Bargaining Update and Survey Results Spring 2018

Dear WTEG & WPEG Members

The Company and the combined bargaining teams of WTEG and WPEG negotiated March 20-22, April 18 and May 29-31. The last two sessions concentrated on monetary issues.

Your Bargaining Team has bargained hard on the issues that you the members have indicated as important, but has reached the point of impasse. In order to continue to try to reach an agreement at the table, all three parties are requesting the help of a conciliator[1]. A Conciliator is appointed by the Canadian Industrial Relations Board (CIRB) and is mandated to push the parties (a little bit) to reach a deal. The possible outcomes of conciliation are as follows:

a) A tentative deal is reached between the Company and WTEG & WPEG

b) A decision to continue to negotiate

c) No tentative deal, continued impasse and possible workplace action or lock-out

The conciliation is likely to take place in early fall.

Union and the Company also signed Maintenance of Service Agreement (MSA) that outlines those members who would have to remain on active duty should a strike be called by the union. 

At this time, we will be asking for your support to secure fair Collective Agreements for both WTEG and WPEG. We have some activities planned for next few weeks and will keep you posted. If you have any questions, concerns or suggestions please feel free to contact any member of the bargaining team.  

Below is the summary of supplemental bargaining survey results.  Thank you for the strong response.

Hours of Work:

We had been presented with options for increasing the hours of work from 37.5 to 40: 5x8 or 4x10.  The majority of the members (87%) were willing to shift to 5x8s.  Note that those 2.5 hours will be paid at the regular hourly pay rate; 6 2/3% pay increase due to the change from 37.5 to 40 hours.  The membership also provided many comments on the hardship 4x10s would present to their personal lives (such as no access to child care or eldercare, the inability to participate in community of family events, and safety issue in longer days and travelling).  The company is insisting on moving to 4x10s site wide.   The timeline for this shift in hours was not made clear at this time.

Only around ¼ of members would want to have evening shifts.  The Company has indicated evening shifts would be required, but potentially not until 2019 fall.  This is still to be confirmed.

Unpaid Lunch Breaks for WTEG:

For WTEG members, the survey asked are you willing to exchange two paid 15 minutes coffee break for 30 minutes paid lunch (reduced from a 45 minute unpaid lunch).  Almost half of WTEG members were, but the Company is only offering paid lunches on evening shifts.  Not for day shifts of any length.

Start time:

The majority of members are willing to start work at 0700 or 0730; the company has previously negotiated 0600 starts for 4x10 shifts with other unions on site.  They indicated they would approach other unions on the matter when we pointed out issues with child care and the safety of such an early start in winter.  Only 11% of WPEG and WTEG members would want a 0600 start.

Training and C & PD:

Over 84% of members indicated training is important to them; your bargaining team has spent many hours working to develop and present a fairer system.  Improvements in language for an improved system have been made but remain on the table at the time.

Performance appraisal:

70% of you felt the performance appraisal system is unfair, despite much discussion no change in the appraisal system was achieved. Merit increases are expected to remain same.

Economic increase:

Nearly 65% felt they weren’t being adequately financially compensated for their work.  At this time the Company is only willing to provide a 1.5% scale increase in each of two years, 2017 and 2018.  This is below the increase in the cost of living which is over 2%.  We have proposed a five year Collective Agreement with an economic re-opener in 2019, which takes the wishes of the majority of members for either a three or five year agreement into consideration.

While over 70% of members were aware of the Incentive/Retention plan, only 20% felt they would receive anything from it annually, and only 11% felt they would receive a retention bonus at the end of the project. This insecurity around the Plans means only 17% felt they would stay longer to receive its benefits,

In solidarity, your Bargaining Teams

Jason Martino

Email :

Kamil Malek

Email :

Ron Fitzmaurice

Email :

Brent Pemberton

Email :

Bruce Martini

Email :


[1] For more information regarding conciliation please see