Brothers and sisters,
Our first days of Federal Conciliation began last week at the offices of the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service (FMCS) at 890 W Pender St in Vancouver. Your Bargaining Committee, led by national president Lee Riggs, met with the company and Conciliation Officer John Rooney on June 13, 14, & 15. The conversations were focused and productive, attributed to the guidance that John has brought to the process. We have had some very frank discussions directed at all of the remaining proposals on the table. Your Committee is working diligently to achieve maximum job security for you and your families. We believe that you deserve respect and commitment for the value you bring to this organization. The company is extremely aware of the seriousness of that statement.
Your employer continued to push their 'Bring Your Own Device' (BYOD) proposal, saying that they wanted to "get out of the cell phone management business". This is an ironic position, for since acquiring Freedom Mobile, they have seemed quite interested in building a profitable cell phone management business. They remind us regularly how much money they're making through Freedom Mobile and the bright future it has. Both committees have come to agree that smart phones are, in fact, tools that are required to do our jobs in the field. The major difference of opinion is that the company thinks you should be responsible for it. We do not. Concerns around security, privacy, and cost were discussed at length. We are having a very difficult time understanding the company's pitch that this is something that will benefit our membership. We wonder, what tool or expense will they suggest we take responsibility for next? The company's other remaining proposal, 'Take Vehicle Home Program' (TVHP), was discussed in detail as well.
Very specific discussions were had about our 'Customer Premise Equipment' (CPE) proposal. There can be no doubt of our resolve as a group to achieve solid language on CPE. Job security is vital to you and your family's future, so we're looking for a commitment from our employer that we'll continue to be the provider of the exceptional service that Shaw customers have depended on for decades. CPE jurisdiction delivers this, and in our minds creates a mutually beneficial system between the union and the company to create an amicably profitable working relationship and sends a message to all of the bargaining unit, loud and clear, that you are valued for the work that you do. Your Unit 60 leadership is committed to negotiate a collective agreement that works for everyone involved, workers and management alike, and believe that this is an integral piece of that puzzle to restoring the good relationship we all enjoyed prior to November 8, 2016.
Other issues in our CBA surrounding benefits, bereavement, and the warehouse were lobbied for as well. We're working hard on drafting language that both parties can stand behind to ensure that you not only enjoy what you do, but most importantly, enjoy who you're working for. We're asking that Shaw works on regaining that trust from you by delivering on some of the important requests that you have made to them during this round of bargaining.
Thank you for your continued support and show of solidarity. Every little bit helps from every corner of our union. Your collective efforts do not go unnoticed and are greatly appreciated at the table.
Unit 60 Bargaining Committee