June 17, 2021
Unifor Atlantic Communications Local (Unifor ACL) would like to address the message sent out from Mirko Bibic to all Bell team members on June 15, 2021.
The COVID-19 pandemic sent the world into shutdown and triggered an immediate response to help keep everyone safe and reduce the possibility of the virus spreading. With the immediate response, came unplanned working conditions that were not initially expected to remain for such an extended time.
There is a Labour Relations Advisory (LRA) issued by the company in 2006 to clarify that unionized employees cannot work from home for any reason or for any length of time. As you will read in the link below, it is only in an extreme or unusual circumstances that the Council and the Company may consider permitting working from home. There has been no event that has been as extreme or unusual as the last 15 months:
Recently it has been identified by our National Union in a working from home survey, Unifor ACL bargaining survey and the many issues proposals that were sent in from our membership, that working from home is an attractive alternative for many of our workers. Considerable cost savings is expected to be realized by the company in having such arrangement.
Modifying our Collective Agreement in a manner that allows for a working from home program proposed by the company will require focused discussion to ensure that our members are contractually and financially protected.
Open discussion with Bell about details of a working from home program, with the best interests of our membership in mind, is a very important topic for our bargaining committee.
Cullen Bolger, Jeff Nelson, Lee Pearce, Sandy Brideau,
Susan Rice, Faith Chaisson, Jennifer Pauley, Stéphane Lamoureux,
National Rep Roch Leblanc