There appears to be some uncertainty about the rights that apply after the collective agreements have expired. This bulletin is to clarify the situation.
The expiry date of the RSMC collective agreement is December 31, 2017.
The expiry date of the urban operations collective agreement is January 31, 2018.
The rights set out in both these collective agreements continue to apply. You can see for yourself by reading clause 34.03 of the RSMC collective agreement or 43.03 of the urban collective agreement. The Canada Labour Code provides that collective agreements continue to apply until the Union obtains the right to strike, and the employer, the right to lockout. We are not anywhere near this stage.
We are all still entitled to the same working conditions, wages and benefits as last year. Any violation of these provisions by management is just as much a violation as it would have been before the expiry date. If you know of a violation, please bring it to the attention of a shop steward or your local so that we can determine how best to act on it.
There will be a lot more rumours in the weeks and months to come. Beware! Don’t give in to the temptation to spread false rumours, especially if they are spread by the employer. Contact your union steward or a member of your Local Executive Committee to obtain accurate information. We will continue to provide information as quickly as we can. We gain bargaining strength from our confidence that the membership is united and informed.
Negotiation meetings will now intensify. We will make every effort to obtain a collective agreement that brings together the RSMC and urban units and improves the working conditions of all workers.