Updates

Appeal of the dismissal of Conductor C. Hoyt

For the reasons set out above, I find that the Company did not discharge its burden of proving that the Grievor was impaired while on duty or subject to duty, or otherwise violated Rule G, the Policy or Procedure, nor that the June 10, 2019 incident was caused, in whole or in part, by his alleged impairment. In the absence of impairment, there is no cause for discipline. In the circumstances, I find that the Grievor’s dismissal due to his drug consumption and test result of June 2019 was not warranted.

I order that the Grievor be reinstated without loss of service and that he be made whole for all compensation and benefits lost. 

Appeal of the company's layoff of Hamilton based employees

Article 5.7 of the ESR Agreement states that, for the purposes of employees’ annual vacation (referred to in Article 5.7 as “AV”), Hamilton will be treated as an independent terminal. Contrary to the Company’s submission, Article 5.7 does not state that Hamilton will be treated as an independent terminal “only” for employees’ annual vacation purposes. Therefore, Article 5.7 is not inconsistent with the finding that Article 5.8 also creates a special regime for the staffing of assignments.

For these reasons, the grievance is allowed. I order that the Grievors be compensated for all lost wages for the layoff period at issue and that they be made whole, notably regarding pension, vacation, benefits, earned days off and vacation, without loss of seniority.

Negotiations Bulletin 4

We continue to ensure your demands are heard regardless of the Company’s position on each particular subject. Unfortunately, given the number of issues outstanding, we will be requesting that the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Services (FMCS) provide their assistance in the current process. This is to inform you that we will serve notice of dispute to the Minister of Labour with respect to our current round of collective bargaining with CP Rail.

Appeal of the dismissal of Locomotive Engineer M. Warner

In the circumstances, I find that the Grievor’s dismissal was not warranted. I order that the Grievor be reinstated without loss of service and that he be made whole for all compensation and benefits lost. I remain seized with respect to the implementation of this decision.

Appeal of the dismissal of Conductor D. Gaymer 

The nature of the grievor’s actions, combined with his heavy discipline record, warrants severe discipline. However, I am satisfied that the mitigating factors in this case justify a substitution of penalty, short of dismissal. Therefore, I direct that the grievor be reinstated in his employment, without compensation or benefits, without loss of seniority, with all time lost to serve as a suspension for a “major offence”, as defined under the Company’s Employee Discipline & Accountability Process. The grievor shall stand at Step 3 of the Company’s Progressive Discipline Steps.

Supplemental – AV & GH 

As noted before we had to go back to Arbitrator Kaplan for a supplementary hearing on AV-GH (March 21, 2021 Award attached) which we have received his decision today. We were further successful in the ongoing years after 2017/2018 for any grievances filed as well as the original award where the company was limiting when those affected could take their 2 days.

"The Company is directed to allow employees to use their remedial vacation days in conjunction with their scheduled vacation, in the summer months and December. Lost prime time should be replaced by prime time, if the affected employee wishes. Any other outcome would not be a real remedy."

LETHBRIDGE NON-COMPLIANT LOCOMOTIVE 

This was an Award achieved regarding numerous grievances advanced regarding the Company continuously utilizing foreign railway locomotives in the lead position and that do not comply with Collective Agreement provisions / past jurisprudence as well as Canadian Regulations. Specifically, the issue and grievances in connection with foreign locomotives was directed toward locomotives unequipped with proper fridges, hot plates, and vinyl seats. The Award in itself is self-explanatory, and clearly, Arbitrator Kaplan agreed with the Union position in this matter. Our focus now must be to ensure our Membership immediately notify the Company when we receive a train/assignment with a non-compliant locomotive leading to ensure it is swapped properly and to ensure that subsequent crews do not have to work under substandard conditions.  

SUSPENSION OF CONDUCTOR TRAINING 

This issue revolved around the Company arbitrarily choosing to suspend a number of Conductor Training classes that were already in session in both the East and the West in the fall off 2019 and without any prior notice (10-days) being given to the employees as per the CCBA. To be clear, the Company did not lay these employees off. The involved Conductor Trainees were merely informed that their training was temporarily suspended. All of the employees were subsequently returned to complete their training at the beginning of October, 2019 and approximately 10 days later. The employees that chose to return to service following the 10-day hiatus and completed their training as originally scheduled were addressed in a number of grievances from multiple TCRC Divisions nationwide. Arbitrator Kaplan ruled that the Company is not at liberty to merely suspend a Conductor Training Program at whim and following his review. Each Member involved in this dispute will now receive their compensation as if they were continually employed with the Company for all time held out. This award represents approximately $150,000 to our Members. Should any issues arise in the future regarding our Members training being improperly suspended and/or not receiving requisite 10-day-notice for lay-off; the appropriate Local Chairman should be immediately advised.

2021 TCRC West Bursary Program 

Both General Committees of Adjustment - CP Lines West have established a Bursary Program. A maximum of twenty $500 bursaries will be distributed to assist students who are a spouse, child, stepchild, grandchild or step-grandchild of any active Teamsters Canada Rail Conference Member of either Western General Committee.

Cancellation of scheduled vacation days in January 2018 

“The December General Holiday dates extended the vacation to January and the vacation was further extended by the January General Holiday dates. There Is no other interpretation.  Management knew all of this and agreed to this in advance; why else would it otherwise have started calling the cohort on the evening of January 2nd asking them to sign on for duty?”  The Arbitrator agreed with our position and awarded “the remedy for each affected employee is $175 per day lost and each affected employee shall receive an additional day of vacation, or if two days were lost, two additional days of vacation, on a mutually agreed day, or dates, as the case may be.” 

Live lift work just past the international border in Portal

The Company’s initiative to remove containers, that had been flagged by customs, directly off a train just over the border at Portal North, Dakota. The operation of the “Live Lift” results in, on many occasions, the head end of the train going outside the terminal switching limits. In an effort to resolve the issue, Arbitrator Kaplan mediated the issue resulting in the appendix to the award.    As such, the outstanding grievances, and claims held in abeyance, will be paid at 75 miles and on a go forward basis the crews will be 50 miles to perform the “Live Lift”.   

Outpost at Spence

For years there has been a local rule governing the assignments and clarifying the entitlements of payments for crews to work at the Spence outpost. The agreement has been tested on several occasions including the forcing of employees to Spence in CROA 4294.   Regardless, it was a local rule and the Company cancelled it in accordance with the terms of the agreement and the Arbitrator found such. Of significance to the matter is the Arbitrator recognizing and confirming the applicability of the two letters within the CBA regarding Outposts. The affected employees will receive all compensation associated with deadheading and those letters. 

Appeal of the dismissal of Marc Lebeuf

It is my view that the termination penalty imposed on the grievor, an 11-year employee, for the GOI breaches for this incident, is excessive. The grievor’s termination shall be substituted with a 30-day suspension. He shall be reinstated to his former position and otherwise made whole.

Appeal of the dismissal of Locomotive Engineer Mark Smith

The grievance is upheld. The grievor shall be reinstated to service without loss of seniority and shall otherwise be made whole. I shall retain jurisdiction should any issues arise in the implementation of this award.

Appeal of the dismissal of Conductor T. Jeglum

The arbitrator further agrees in these circumstances with the comments of the Arbitrator in CROA 4418 “…that the imposition of a serious sanction, short of termination, will have the desired rehabilitative impact on this grievor”. Accordingly, after considering all the facts, the Arbitrator directs that the Company reinstate the grievor forthwith without loss of seniority, but without compensation for any wages or benefits lost.

Kaplan Supplemental to Award 1B Initial Terminal

On October 16, 2020, a number of matters proceeded to a hearing and awards were issued on October 19, 2020. An interpretation dispute subsequently arose in respect of one of the awards, and the parties asked that it be determined by written submissions.

In brief, one of the particular matters that first went to hearing was whether the Company can require a Conductor Only freight crew to make a set off from their train prior to departing from the initial terminal. The answer to that question, as set out in the award, was yes, but subject to the Letter re: Conductor Only Final Terminal dated August 31, 1992.  

Kaplan Awards Final Terminal

In brief, all four grievances submitted to arbitration allege a violation of Conductor Only Provisions at the Final Terminal. Both parties filled detailed written briefs and reply briefs. The cases proceeded to a hearing by Zoom on November 11, 2020.

Conductor Only Initial Terminal Disputes

Sisters and Brothers, This is in regard to the second to final remaining dispute (Conductor Only Initial Terminal Violations) from our last bargaining sessions with CP and agreed by the parties to be heard by Arbitrator William Kaplan in the closed period. We have one last issue to be heard by Mr. Kaplan on November 11, 2020, that being Final Terminal Switching Violations. These proceedings have been delayed significantly due to the Covid-19 pandemic, and are being heard electronically as opposed to in-person hearings due to our inability to meet face to face.

Appeal of the dismissal of Conductor D. MacDonald

“The arbitrator heard the grievance on the merits on October 10, 2019. In his decision dated October 23, 2019, the arbitrator determined that residual traces of marijuana in the grievor’s urine as a result of recreational off-duty marijuana use did not “establish impairment”, did not violate the Drug Policy, and did not establish just cause to terminate his employment. The arbitrator ordered CP to reinstate the grievor as an employee “

Judicial Review Decision:

“The arbitrator’s analysis, based on the facts before him, shows a line of analysis leading from the evidence to the conclusion. His reliance on arbitral case law was reasonable. The Union relies on eight CROA decisions, from 2008 to 2019, which all state that a failed urinalysis test is not by itself sufficient proof of impairment. Oral fluid testing, on the other hand, can reliably show impairment. In basing his decision on the CROA case law, on the facts found by the arbitrator, the arbitrator’s analysis was reasonable.”

Brother Bill Pitts Retires!

His union involvement began at the division level where he took on the role of Vice Local Chairman, he went on to become the CTY Local Chairman and Vice General Chairman CTY West. His extensive union resume also includes Recording Secretary for the National Office, the CTY West Locomotive Cab Committee and the CTY West Bunkhouse Committee. His hard work for the union is both recognized and greatly appreciated! His leadership and friendship will be missed by all of us who were fortunate enough to have worked with him.  

$500 BURSARY

Both General Committees of Adjustment – CP Lines West have established a bursary program. 

Additional Member Benefits at No Cost!

Through a partnership with American Income Life Insurance Company, additional benefits are being provided to all members of Teamsters Canada Rail Conference - CP.

Appeal of the 45-day suspension and subsequent Dismissal of Conductor Todd Lavigne of Coquitlam, BC.

Under the circumstances, I find that the appropriate discipline for this incident should be a further period of suspension. The dismissal penalty shall be removed from the grievor’s record and substituted with a suspension of 45 days. The grievor shall be reinstated into his employment and made whole without loss of seniority. The Suspension grievance succeeds. The 30-day suspension is set aside. The Dismissal grievance also succeeds to the extent that a 45-day suspension is substituted for the grievor’s dismissal.

ALetter from CP EVP Regarding Canada’s COVID-19 self-isolation

CP interpreted this exemption to apply to workers critical to the operation of the railway, not just to those crew members who cross the Canada-U.S. border as part of their duties. We were supported in this position in discussions with government officials. We see, however, that Brigitte Diogo of Transport Canada has since advised you that the exemption should not apply to a worker returning from a vacation or a personal trip to the U.S. Thank you for sharing that communication with us.

Appeal of the dismissal of Conductor A. Blossom

In general, the Grievor's record of thirty-three years of service reflects long periods of service without discipline. The majority of discipline assessments is generally for operational infractions and the twenty and thirty days of suspension are now pending before the arbitrator. The termination of the Grievor’s employment was excessive and unwarranted.

Violation of the Golden Zone Agreement

Accordingly, the appropriate resolution of this matter is to direct that:
a) the parties be given a period of 60 days from the date hereof to negotiate the appropriate changes to the Golden Zone Agreement - pursuant to Article 35 (1) - taking into consideration the WPP; the provisions of Article 25.05 and the parties’ past practice.
b) failing agreement thereon, the matter is to be returned to me for determination; 

Company Failed to provide Accommodation to Conductor M. Straka

I agree with counsel for the Union that it was not sufficient for the Company to determine whether there were vacant positions into which the grievor could be placed. The duty of accommodation goes further, requiring the employer to consider whether various job functions can be bundled together to create a sufficiently productive accommodated position. Additionally, the obligation of scrutiny on the part of the employer, and for that matter on the part of the Union, extends beyond the bargaining unit and can encompass managerial responsibilities or work in relation to another bargaining unit, subject only to the limitation of undue hardship.

Teamsters Call for Independent Police Investigation into Field Derailment

Montréal, January 27, 2020 – Following allegations of a cover-up by the Canadian Pacific Police Service (CPPS) in relation to the Field derailment, the Teamsters are calling for an independent RCMP investigation into the deadly rail disaster. The union is also reiterating its call for the federal government to abolish corporate police forces. 

Best Wishes for a Happy and Safe Holiday

The TCRC Executive would like to wish our members and their families our very best wishes for a happy and safe holiday.

Brother Kirk McLean GoFundMe

As everyone is aware brother Kirk Mclean tragically passed away on December 2nd while on duty. TCRC Division 320 has setup a GoFundMe to collect funds for Mrs. McLean and the McLean family to help ease their financial burden during this extremely difficult time.

Appeal of the dismissal of Conductor N. Eisner

Having traces of marijuana in the body may raise a question of whether there is impairment, but that bit of evidence by itself is not enough to establish impairment, whereas the negative breath alcohol and oral fluid tests strongly indicate that there was not. There is no suggestion whatever that the grievor’s conduct, movements or verbal behaviour were indicative of impairment.

 Appeal of the dismissal of Conductor S. Velanoff

Having traces of marijuana in the body may raise a question of whether there is impairment, but that bit of evidence by itself is not enough to establish impairment, whereas the negative breath alcohol and oral fluid tests strongly indicate that there was not. There is no suggestion whatever that the grievor’s conduct, movements or verbal behaviour were indicative of impairment.

Employees Entitlement When Held Out or Suspended

This case concerns the entitlement of employees who are held out of service or suspended for greater than thirty days. The parties filed detailed briefs and the matter proceeded to a hearing in Toronto. 

Action Required for Benefits Provider Change

Effective January 1st, 2020, Sun Life will be your new benefits provider for Health, Dental, Life Insurance, and Optional Life benefits. Morneau Shepell will be your new Weekly Indemnity Benefit (WIB) provider. AIG will continue to be the provider for Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD&D). The benefits will remain the same.

Brother Ryan Campbell

On the morning of September 20, 2019, CP Rail Conductor Trainee Ryan Campbell, age 42, who is currently working out of Brandon, MB, was struck by a train travelling 25 MPH while detraining from a locomotive to perform switching in Estevan, SK.  Ryan has sustained serious injuries and will be unable to work for an extended period of time.  He is currently hospitalized with a broken pelvis, broken hip and broken ribs.  A Go Fund Me was set up to provide support for his family. Please join us in donating what you can.      

Grievance Management Tracking System

The GMS is not a joint union-management program; it is not the property equally of the company and the union, as is the collective agreement. Thus, the company’s letter of April5, 2019 improperly limits the rights of the union and of employees to file grievances and constitutes, I find, a violation of the collective agreement.

Kaplan award - Turned enroute back to the AFHT

The Company introduced evidence of earlier iterations of the language in question, but respectfully those earlier iterations, dating back decades, are not helpful as these provisions have been changed in more than one respect, and they simply do not meet the basic test for relying on bargaining history or otherwise as an aide to interpretation. One is left with the collective agreement language, and it is clear and compelling: the company can, in certain circumstances change the class, of service and if does so, it can return the crew to their Home Terminal or, if turned, pay them the 100 miles. Accordingly, and for the foregoing reasons, the crew is each entitled to compensation for 100 miles.

Buffalo ESR Supplemental Award

I agree with the Union that employees who are required to operate their trains beyond Lambton, in breach of the limits found in the Buffalo/Toronto ESR, must be compensated for the additional work being required by the Company. To require employees to provide such additional work without compensation would be absurd (requiring additional work without additional compensation) and would do nothing to ensure compliance by the Company in the future.

In Memory of Brother Ken Sikorski

After a long battle with cancer, Ken found peace surrounded by his loved ones on Tuesday, March 26, 2019 at the age of 59 years. Ken worked for CP from 1987 to 2016 and couldn't wait to retire.