Teamsters 362 Introduces New Leadership

Just as we come into the end of the summer, Teamsters Local 362 has sworn in new officers. Although it will be sad to see some of our amazing leadership retire, we won't forget how much they have contributed to the local. As they move on and we introduce who will be filling the positions, we thought we would take a look at the new leadership.

New Positions

At the last Executive Board meeting, Rick Eichel swore in the following officers to their new positions effective September 1, 2017.

Al Porter – Secretary-Treasurer & Principal Officer

Al Porter has taken the position of Secretary-Treasurer and Principal Officer after serving previously as President. He said he is relying on all of the valuable lessons he has learned during his long career with Teamsters 362 to help him as he takes on this role.

“There are a lot of younger people coming into new positions in the union and you want to get it right for them,” he said of the new role.

He said he looks forward to ramping up the organizing for 362 and to keep doing his best to represent the members of Teamsters 362.

Wayne Garner – President

Wayne Garner was previously in the position of Vice-President and said it was ‘an honour’ to be sworn in by Rick Eichel alongside his colleagues.

Wayne said he wants to focus on improving communication with the membership and helping them feel a sense of ownership and pride in the union. He also hopes to continue advocating and creating awareness about important social issues.

“I'm looking forward to the challenge and will approach my role inspired by the past leadership of our great Local Union,” he said.

Jordan Madarash – Vice-President

Jordan Madarash has moved from the role of Business Agent to Vice-President and described the transition as a huge honour. He said he is looking forward to the challenges and his main goal is to be there for the membership and represent them.

“I think of some of the previous names of those that held this position prior and I truly feel inspired,” said Jordan. “To have been included in the history of this great Local, I will do everything in my power to not disappoint the current leaders.”

He said he would love to see the local grow in volume and solidarity,  and now is the time to make the local even better and stronger.

Harbans Minhaus – Trustee

Harbans has been with the Teamsters since 2004 and will be taking over Robert Morris’ place on the Executive Board. He said he is very proud to be a member of the Trustees and he is excited to learn more about the roles in a union.

“It is a big responsibility,” said the Shop Steward. “I want to see the progress of the union and the members to be protected properly and fairly.”

Retiring

We also said goodbye to two important members of the Teamsters 362 family – Rick Eichel and Robert Morris.

Rick Eichel – retiring from position of Secretary-Treasurer & Principal Officer

Rick Eichel will be retiring from his position of Secretary-Treasurer and Principal Officer and moving on to take a position with Teamsters Canada. He will be the Director of the Parcel Division, communicating to the local unions and chairing the negotiations in this area.

Rick was hired in 1989 as a Business Agent with Teamsters Local 362 and served as President from 1991 to 2008 before moving onto Secretary Treasurer.

A lot has changed in the local over those years.

He recalled that when he first started, the local did not own any buildings and now they have three office buildings across the province and a condo for accommodation. He is also proud to say that the Local is at a point where it is financially stable, which means they are able to tackle any battle and negotiate better contracts for the members.

He said he is also extremely proud of the day-to-day representation the local is able to provide to its members, not to mention the amazing benefit plans and health and welfare plans that have both grown over the years.

As for a final message to the union members he has led for so many years, Rick stressed the importance of participation and attending meetings.

“A union is like a gym in that you only get out of it what you are prepared to put in,” he said. “You need to know what your union stands for and stand behind it.”

He pointed out that his career would not have been possible without former Secretary Treasurer Roy Finley, who left him a union that he said was in great shape.

With a little more time for himself, Rick said he is excited to get to take a vacation from time to time and to get out and ride his motorcycle a bit more. He stressed above all else however, that he will always be there for local 362.

Robert Morris – retiring from position of Trustee

Robert has been working in the armoured car industry for many years and has been a proud Trustee with Teamsters 362 during that time. He said that he is happy to let younger people take part in being on the Executive Board as he moves on.

“The industry has grown so much in terms of wage parity and benefits with 362,” he said. “We’ve worked towards better collective agreements. Because of the union, people in the armoured car industry overall have a better standard of living.”

He said in retirement he is looking forward to spending time with his six grandkids and travelling with his wife.


Teamsters 362 Highlights Aug 28

Each week Teamsters Local 362 will update our members on what is happening within the local and what our business agents are doing outside of their daily responsibilities. Make sure you check in to see what is happening in the union.

CURRENT BARGAINING

Business Agent Lukas Eichel-Fominov and Richard Brown are voting the MOA of Agreement this week for ASIG Calgary at the Acclaim Hotel.

Business Agent Ken Jarvis has an offer this week to take a ratification vote for the Anixter group. Sept. 9 is the day of the vote.

IMPORTANT NEWS

Members of the 362 Leadership team were in Montreal this week for the 50th Annual Canadian Employee Benefits Conference.

Business Agent Ryan Adams was at the Canadian Freightways in Edmonton on Friday to walk through the facility to address some safety concerns recently brought to his attention.

Business Agent Jordan Madarash had a labour management meeting with Garda PBS Edmonton and the Shop Stewards.

Business Agent Lukas Eichel- Fominov and Richard Brown volunteered with the Kenworth at the Millarville Fair. Lukas also had  meeting with two Shop Stewards that work in the non-passenger screening of vehicles to discuss issues they are having. He also had a meeting with two new Stewards that were elected last week all happening with Garda World Pre-board Screening. The new Stewards are Lukhwinder Mann, John Worden
and Samantha Robb.

This week Business Agent Shaun Quaghebeur had membership meetings at Lafarge Fort Saskatchewan, Lafarge Nisku, Lafarge PetroWay, Lafarge Stadium and Lafarge Winterburn to discuss plant allocation and opt in and out.

UPCOMING EVENTS

The 12 Stop Ride For Recovery has announced a date for its ninth year, and Teamsters 362 is proud to take part in it. The fundraiser is a 'scavenger hunt style' motorcycle ride to increase awareness of addiction helps us raise funds for the Fresh Start Recovery Centre. This year it will take place on Aug. 26. Come and meet some of the staff and executive from Teamsters 362 who will be taking part in the ride.


It's Time to Update Occupational Health and Safety in Alberta

In 2017, no one should have to feel worried about their safety at work, but the reality is that many do. Every year there are headlines across Alberta about workers seriously injured or killed on the job.

In August alone three employees were injured in an explosion at a car wash in Red Deer and a Cremona man was killed on the job.

We have one of the highest per capita number of workplace fatalities in Canada, with 144 workplace fatality claims just last year. Albertan’s know we can do better and now the government has a chance to make that happen.

Labour Minister Christina Gray announced last week that the NDP government will launch a review of the Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Act that has not been revamped since 1976.

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This seems to follow a disturbing pattern in Alberta of not updating labour legislation. Until this year, labour laws had not been updated in the province for nearly three decades.

Needless to say a lot has changed since the 70s – technology, politicians, culture and society. These changes have all effected the workplace today and the hazards associated with it.

The OHS is legislation in the province that establishes minimum standards for safe and healthy practices in Alberta workplaces through inspection, investigations and prosecutions.

The government pointed out three key areas that they plan to make changes to – clarifying responsibility in legislation, improving worker engagement in workplace health and safety and improving coordination and use of tools available for prevention.

The good news is that public has been invited to participate by completing an online survey or writing the government to suggest how OHS could improve.

Labour unions have fought for health and safety in workplaces since their beginning and many of the laws we have today are because of unions.

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Researchers have found in both North America and internationally, that where there is a union present, workplaces injury rates are lower than non union. In Canada a study found that unionized construction sites were 30 per cent less likely to suffer critical injuries.

One way is through leadership. Union shop stewards are able to ensure the safety of everyone in the workplace and are available if employees feel that they need to report any health or safety violations.

Unions also provide safety training courses that can range from Transportation of Dangerous Goods First Aid Construction Safety Training System (C.S.T.S.), to forklift training, to mental health anti-stigma training.

Make sure that you take the time to give your opinion on how you think the government can improve worker safety in our province at the following link https://www.alberta.ca/ohs-system-review.aspx.

 


Teamsters 362 Highlights Aug 19

Each week Teamsters Local 362 will update our members on what is happening within the local and what our business agents are doing outside of their daily responsibilities. Make sure you check in to see what is happening in the union.

CURRENT BARGAINING

Business Agent Jordan Madarash and Lukas Eichel-Fominov had bargaining with ASIG in Edmonton and Calgary this week.

IMPORTANT NEWS

Business Agent Shaun Quaghebeur had a conference call with Lafarge Edmonton about plant allocation for the membership, and the ability to “opt in and opt out” of work at other plants in the Edmonton area. Shaun also pick up the signed CBA for Waste Connections (formerly Progressive Waste) and forwarded the signed copies to the Calgary office to produce booklets for the membership.

Shaun also met with Lafarge Edmonton management to discuss plans on meeting with the membership next week to discuss plant allocation.

Business Agent Ken Jarvis was able to get some members paid for work that the company contracted out without asking employees if they would like to perform that work.

This week at Garda YYC we voted in three new Stewards – John Worden, Samantha Robb and Lukhwinder Mann.

Teamsters Local 362 has sworn in new officers. At the Executive Board Meeting Rick Eichel swore in the following officers to their new positions effective September 1, 2017:

Al Porter was sworn in as Secretary-Treasurer & Principal Officer.

Wayne Garner was sworn in as President.

Rick Eichel swore in Jordan Madarash, Local 362 Business Agent to the position of Vice President, to fill the position left vacant by Wayne Garner’s appointment to President.

Rick Eichel swore in Harbans Minhaus, Shop Steward – Garda World, to the position of Trustee, to fill the position left vacant by Robert Morris’ retirement.

On August 1st 2017 Rick accepted an appointment to Teamsters Canada as a National Representative and National Director of the Parcel Division.

UPCOMING EVENTS

The 12 Stop Ride For Recovery has announced a date for its ninth year, and Teamsters 362 is proud to take part in it. The fundraiser is a 'scavenger hunt style' motorcycle ride to increase awareness of addiction helps us raise funds for the Fresh Start Recovery Centre. This year it will take place on Aug. 26. Come and meet some of the staff and executive from Teamsters 362 who will be taking part in the ride.


Who Will Benefit Most From A Minimum Wage Increase?

Raising the minimum wage in Canada is a polarizing issue to say the least.

Business owners are worried about the cost, with CEO’s speaking out against the raise. The latest being Eric R. La Fleche of Metro Inc and Loblaws' CEO Galen Weston.

According to the Huffington Post, Weston ‘complained to investors about the irritating cost of paying its workers a living wage’  However, Loblaws doubled its profits last year.

But others feel that it is time for those working in low wage jobs to be making more, with several provinces committed to raising the minimum wage.

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Chances are you know at least one person who is working a part-time or low wage job or you yourself have. The research shows that the majority of those who work in those jobs are workers of colour or women.

According to the Canadian Women’s Foundation almost 70 per cent of part-time workers are women and 60 per cent of minimum-wage earners are female. They also found that most women facing poverty in Canada are working, but ‘can’t earn enough to lift themselves out of poverty because they are clustered in these low-paid and precarious jobs.’

Workers of colour earn 81 cents for every dollar and there is an even wider gap for workers of colour that are women, Indigenous or have accessibility issues.

Labour laws and raising the minimum wage are both ways to address this issue and another tool is unionization.

Unions have lead the way when it comes to fair wages and good jobs for all Canadians including women and workers of colour.

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In Alberta alone, union women earn $7.76/hour more than non-union workers and Indigenous union workers earned $8.47/hour more than non-union.

Besides fair wages, union workers also have safer workplaces, health benefits and fair scheduling – all things lacking in many low-wage and precarious positions.

While raising the minimum wage is important, unionization has become an important part of helping workers across Canada.


Gender Inequality in the Tech World

It’s nothing new to see Google grabbing headlines. It would actually be weird to not hear about the latest tech update from the mega company.

But this week the tech giant is making headlines for a not so great reason – anti-diversity.

A senior software engineer sent out a memo titled ‘Google’s Ideological Echo Chamber.’ In it he argued that ‘that the gender gaps at Google are the result of biological differences between men and women, and that the company shouldn’t offer programs that help under-represented groups.’ He also argued that politically conservative employees are discriminated against and there is little protection for that group.

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This isn’t the first incident of anti-diversity at Google. Earlier this year the US Department of Labor said that the company had been systematically underpaying female employees.

It is a problem that spreads across a lot tech companies and across borders.

According to an article by CBC news women make up less than a third of the workforce at many tech companies. Tech companies say this is a ‘pipeline problem’ and that there aren’t enough women and minorities with the right qualifications.

One way to fight discrimination in the workplace is unionizing, something more tech company employees are pushing for. It has been argued in the past that tech companies are often seen as great places to work without a union, but in the past year more and more stories of discrimination have come to the surface.

Last year shuttle drivers and warehouse workers voted to unionize with Teamsters. Amazon employees in Seattle were laid off just as their organizing was starting to gain momentum.

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Unions have played a major role for  women’s rights in the workplace, including the Teamsters with contracts that have lead the way when it comes to gender equality. According to the Canadian Labour Congress, union members earn on average $5.28 per hour more than workers without a union and women earn $7.10 per hour more on average with a union.

A collective agreement can ensure that all workers are treated equally and have rights to protect them in the workplace, something it seems more tech companies need.

 


Teamsters 362 Highlights Aug 12

Each week Teamsters Local 362 will update our members on what is happening within the local and what our business agents are doing outside of their daily responsibilities. Make sure you check in to see what is happening in the union.

IMPORTANT NEWS

Business Agent Jordan Madarash will be holding a Garda Pre-Board Screening Edmonton Labour Management Meeting this week and will also be attending the National Health and Safety Policy Committee meeting for Garda Pre-Board Screeners.

Vice-President Wayne Garner had grievance meetings at Garda CIT in Calgary.

Business Agent Shaun Quaghebeur will be at a proposal meeting for PeBen Nisku. Last week he completed the proposal meeting in Grand Prairie and Lafarge Grand Prairie Bargaining and will have a document to vote the week after next.

Shaun Quaghebeur will also have Lafarge Edmonton and area bargaining.

Vice-President Wayne Garner travelled to Edmonton this week to get the tractor trailer unit ready for the volunteer work that him and his son do at at the Ride to Conquer Cancer this weekend. They will transport RTCC participants bicycles from Edmonton and Red Deer to Canada Olympic park in the evening and return them to Red Deer and Edmonton Sunday afternoon.

UPCOMING EVENTS

The Enbridge Ride to Conquer Cancer will be taking place in Alberta on Aug 12 - 13 and Teamsters 362 will be taking part. Proceeds will be benefiting the Alberta Cancer Foundation. Find out more information about how you can take part http://ab17.conquercancer.ca/.

The 12 Stop Ride For Recovery has announced a date for its ninth year, and Teamsters 362 is proud to take part in it. The fundraiser is a 'scavenger hunt style' motorcycle ride to increase awareness of addiction helps us raise funds for the Fresh Start Recovery Centre. This year it will take place on Aug. 26. Come and meet some of the staff and executive from Teamsters 362 who will be taking part in the ride.


Inequality An Issue In Canada's Major Cities

Inequality in Canada continues to rise across the country, but a recent study has shown that this problem is mainly in our biggest cities.

The Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA Canada) released a report on inequality and found that our major cities have had most of the income inequality since the early 80s.

Those cities are Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver and Calgary.

While Calgary has a lot to be proud of as a city over the past few decades, income equality is not one of them. Calgary's inequality has grown four times faster than the national average, followed by Toronto and Vancouver.

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Alberta as a province has the highest rate of inequality across Canada.

So why does this matter?

Because 80 per cent of Canadians live in cities, and 40 per cent of them live in the four cities mentioned above.

Francis Fong, chief economist for CPA Canada said that the replacement of 'middle-skilled jobs' may have contributed to the rise in cities in particular. He added that cities aren’t equipped with the proper means to fight the problem because those resources and funding are usually found at the federal and provincial levels.

Studies have shown that countries with a high level of income inequality are unhappy, with people reporting lower life satisfaction and ‘more negative daily emotional experiences.’

One answer to this is union membership.

According to a recent article in the New York Times, researchers used data from five different years between 1980 and the mid-2000′s to study the effect of union membership on life satisfaction.

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They found that overall union members are ‘more satisfied with their lives than those who are not members and that the substantive effect of union membership on life satisfaction is large and rivals other common predictors of quality of life.’

Unions built the middle class and guarantee their members good wages, collective bargains and health care benefits.

With the shrinking middle class and the steady rise of inequality, it is clear that unions are needed more now than ever in Canada.


Working in Extreme Heat

This summer in Alberta can be described with one word – hot. In July there seems to be a heat warning every other day and a day below 25 degrees is rare.

Patios are packed, local swimming pools are full and Albertan's are taking advantage of the sun.

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But for people who work outside, extra precautions need to be taken.

According to Metro News, Alberta does not have any ‘hard and fast regulations about how hot is too hot for work.’

In the Occupational Health and Safety Act and the Occupational Health and Safety Code in Alberta there are no specific requirements related to working in the heat or cold. The Act requires employers to ensure the health and safety of workers and the Code requires employers to ‘assess and control hazards workers may be exposed to at the work site.’

OHS in Alberta recommends being aware of the signs of heat stress and stroke so it can be treated right away.

Being a union member means that you have people looking out for you in the workplace, ensuring that you are not forced to work in unsafe working conditions such as extreme heat. If you are ever feeling as though a workplace is unsafe, you can notify a shop steward or a business agent.

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Early warning signs of heat stress and stroke

  • headache
  • confusion
  • dizziness and fatigue
  • dehydration
  • heavy sweating
  • muscle cramps
  • changes to breathing and pulse rate

How to avoid overheating

  • drink lots of water
  • take breaks
  • wear protective equipment designed to reduce heat stress
  • minimize physical activity in hot environments
  • know the signs of heat stress

Teamsters 362 Highlights August 4

Each week Teamsters Local 362 will update our members on what is happening within the local and what our business agents are doing outside of their daily responsibilities. Make sure you check in to see what is happening in the union.

CURRENT BARGAINING
Business Agent Shaun Quaghebeur will be traveling to Grande Prairie for a proposal meeting with members of Peben and is bargaining for Lafarge in Grande Prairie as well.

Business Agent Ryan Adams is bargaining with Rebel‎ Transport this week.

IMPORTANT NEWS
This week we we are counted the ballots for the proposed dispatch rule changes for the Motion picture division.

Business Agents Lukas Eichel-Fominov and David Frost are facilitating Steward training for six Stewards from Garda World Pre-board.

Business Agents Lukas Eichel-Fominov and Jordan Madarash have grievance meetings for Garda Pre Board in Calgary and Edmonton.  They also provided a Shopsteward training course for our Stewards from Garda at YYC.

Business Agent Ryan Adams is working with Grimshaw Trucking amending the Linehaul dispatch rules.

UPCOMING EVENTS

The Enbridge Ride to Conquer Cancer will be taking place in Alberta on Aug 12 - 13 and Teamsters 362 will be taking part. Proceeds will be benefiting the Alberta Cancer Foundation. Find out more information about how you can take part http://ab17.conquercancer.ca/.

The 12 Stop Ride For Recovery has announced a date for its ninth year, and Teamsters 362 is proud to take part in it. The fundraiser is a 'scavenger hunt style' motorcycle ride to increase awareness of addiction helps us raise funds for the Fresh Start Recovery Centre. This year it will take place on Aug. 26. Come and meet some of the staff and executive from Teamsters 362 who will be taking part in the ride.