Highlights of 2021 for UCTE Members
The National Office team first would like to take the time to wish all members a Happy New Year. Over the past two years, times have changed. We have adapted to new work environments. Many of our members have made their mark. The UCTE team would like to take the time to highlight some members’ milestones over the past few years.
Canadian Coast Guard — CCG
CCG members started the year off strong with Ship’s Crew Negotiations. We had a few historic moments. For the first time, a woman was made Master Mariner of the Great Lakes Fleet. We went back in time somewhat when we told the story of the grey area, that is, Machias Seal Island. And we ended the year on a positive note by bringing you Dumping Day.
Airports and Firefighters
The year started with a bang for our members at airports. We took the time to send a letter to the new Minister of Transport, the Honorable Omar Alghabra. A month later, we highlighted grievances won, filed due to punctuation, at arbitration level in favour of the members. Subsequently, a tentative agreement was reached for the Charlottetown YYG Airport, and the collective agreement was signed for the Firefighters at the Quebec City Airport. On March 15, 2021, UCTE presented its document, Safety Management Systems in Transportation: What’s Wrong, which outlined our members’ concerns with the implementation of Safety Management Systems (SMS) in all modes of transportation. An important moment in UCTE’s history was highlighted for women’s leadership in airports in Canada. And we went back in time to tell you the story of our first airport firefighters’ strike in the early 1970s, when Union of Canadian Transportation Employees’ members took job action:
- Part 1: 1974 – A real firefighters’ strike or … just a study session?
- Part 2: 1974 – The strike expands … or was it another study session?
- Part 3: 1974 – All labour disputes must come to an end … just like the firefighters’ study session.
Parks Canada has had a very eventful year. Our members started the year with a new collective agreement. The agreement in place was set to expire on August 4, 2021. This caused the PSAC negotiating team to prepare once again for negotiations. That is why there was a call for bargaining demands and the Parks Canada Agency National Virtual Bargaining Conference. Last November, the elected Parks Canada bargaining team established priorities for negotiations.
Our members at Transport Canada have had an emotional year. First, last April, we learned that TC was taking the next step in its contractual drift and contracting out the work of our Union’s administrative staff. This contracting out process may also put TI group members at risk. Discussions subsequently took place. Transport Canada agreed to send a communiqué to the membership to clarify the process of requesting and reviewing a payroll reconciliation report for our TI members. At that time, a communiqué was drafted regarding the information needed to make a hardship claim and provided instructions on how to apply for other recovery options.
For our Treasury Board members, this year was filled with negotiations in the PA, EB, SV and TC groups. We also shared several communications regarding Phoenix and issues encountered over the past year. Several articles were published on the website regarding vaccination and human rights. UCTE also took the time to post important information on its website regarding the Leave 699 policy grievance. Several of our members have made their mark by securing a place on the new Treasury Board negotiating teams.
Finally, our members played an important role in 2021. They experienced all kinds of emotions, both positive and negative. We must not forget our members at Nav Canada, Natural Resources, Pilotage Authorities, the Canada Space Agency, and at the ports. UCTE is working on several articles to be published throughout 2022. Thank you for your participation and for being part of this great family. Happy New Year to all!