October 23, 2018 

Anything can happen, but here's what we have on our calendars for Oct. 22 to 26:
  • Annual general membership meetings are being scheduled. Talk to your co-workers about your preferred date for a meeting, talk to your GSU staff rep, and watch your email for your meeting notice 
  • The Tuesday Members' Memo is emailed to GSU members weekly on Tuesdays. If you know a co-worker who doesn't receive the TMM and would like to, have them call GSU toll-free at 1.866.522.6686 or send an email to gsu@gsu.ca 
  • general secretary Hugh Wagner and the Local 8 (advance) bargaining committee met their management counterparts on Monday in Regina  
  • Hugh Wagner has a meeting with employers on Tuesday
  • staff representative Steve Torgerson has a grievance meeting scheduled for Wednesday
  • GSU Members, officers and staff will be attending the Saskatchewan Federation of Labour convention being held Oct. 24-27 in Regina
  • staff Representative Dale Markling will be temporarily absent from work - likely until December. Dale underwent successful hip replacement surgery and is in post-operation recovery. Members who would normally contact Dale at the Saskatoon office for assistance can call the GSU office in Regina toll free at 1.866.522.6686 or send an email to gsu@gsu.ca.

Annual General Membership meetings this week:

Sub-Local 15.8 (Nutrien - Grenfell)
Tuesday, Oct. 23 - station visits 
GSU staff: Steve Torgerson


Joint Executive Council Meeting
Regina, SK ~ October 25, 2018 

The autumn semi-annual meeting of GSU's Joint Executive Council will be held in Regina on October 25. JEC representatives will receive an update on administration, finances, and current business of the union.

Saskatchewan Federation of Labour Convention 
Regina, SK ~ October 24 to 27

SFL president Larry Hubich will be retiring after 16 years at the helm of the labour movement in Saskatchewan. The convention will elect Brother Hubich's successor and GSU delegates will be there to participate in this historic event.

GSU's calendar of events is regularly updated and available on GSU's web page: gsu.ca

What could be better than great autumn weather and being in the stands this Saturday to watch the Riders take on the BC Lions? Free tickets to the game.

Two lucky GSU members will each win two tickets to the Riders' Oct. 27 home game. To enter our contest, send us your answer the following question:

What is your favourite song to sing along with when you are in the car alone? (Optional: Would you belt that song out with just as much enthusiasm in a carload of people, or are you more of a solo act?)

Send your answer to us by email at gsu@gsu.ca by noon on Thursday, Oct. 25 and you will be entered in our draw.

Good luck!

Bargaining set to begin in four GSU locals

Locals 1 and 2 - Viterra
Members of GSU's Local 1 and 2 bargaining committee met Viterra management on October 16 in a preliminary meeting to the commencement of agreement renewal bargaining. The purpose of the meeting was to receive and review Viterra's proposals to change the company's salary plan. Details will be released after consultations with management.

Local 8 - Advance 
GSU Local 8 began agreement renewal bargaining with Advance Tank Production Ltd./Advance Tank Centres Ltd. on October 22. Local 8's bargaining proposals will be published after the first bargaining meeting with the employer's representatives.

Local 14 - Richardson
Agreement renewal bargaining on behalf of GSU Local 14 with Richardson International Limited is set to begin November 1 and 2. Locals 14's bargaining proposals will be published after the first bargaining meeting with the employer's representatives.  Local 14's bargaining committee is Dennis Piasta (Kindersley), Dylan Pilon (Assiniboia), Justin Shauf (Langenburg) and general secretary Hugh Wagner.

Since 1936, we have bargained hundreds of workplace contracts and agreements. 

We are proud of what we have accomplished and we continue to work hard to improve workplace conditions for our members through effective collective bargaining with employers.

You can help ensure your collective agreement reflects your needs. 
  • Enforce your rights 
    If you are entitled to a benefit or condition of your agreement, make sure to use it. Don't hesitate to contact your GSU staff rep if you need clarification or assistance.
  • Be involved in bargaining
    Participate in developing bargaining proposals to be taken to the bargaining table with your employer. Attend bargaining meetings, vote on settlements, and support your bargaining committee as they work toward changes to secure and strengthen your collective agreement.
  • Make sure we have your current contact information
    We do our best to keep GSU members apprised of bargaining progress through out web page, the Tuesday Members' Memo and email updates. Be sure to update us with any changes to your email address. 

Learn more about the bargaining process and how it works

The Manitoba Government and General Employees' Union has done a great job of explaining bargaining in their Bargaining for Beginners web page and accompanying  infographic. You can check those out here

Knowing your rights will make your workplace safer

Knowing your rights at work are vital to ensuring everyone makes it home healthy and safe each day. Everyone has three basic rights under The Saskatchewan Employment Act and Federal Occupational Health and Safety.
  • The right to know the hazards at work and how to control them;
  • The right to participate in finding and controlling workplace hazards; and
  • The right to refuse work that you believe is unusually dangerous.

Right to Know

You have the right to get information about hazards in the workplace. If your employer doesn't tell you, ask. Ensure you know where the potential hazards are at your workplace.

Hazards are anything that has the potential to cause an injury or illness.

Right to Participate

Become involved in health and safety at work. Every Saskatchewan workplace with 10 or more workers MUST have a worker/management occupational health committee (OHC). High-hazard workplaces with five to nine workers must have an occupational health and safety representative (OHS representative).

Right to Refuse

You have the right to refuse to do any specific job or task which you have reasonable grounds to believe is unusually dangerous. The danger may be to you or to any other person. 

To read more about your three basic rights follow this link for the  Saskatchewan Employment Act

To read more about your three basic rights follow this link for Federal Occupational Health and Safety

Steps for Refusing Unusually Dangerous Work

If your supervisor/employer asks you to perform a specific job or task that you have grounds to believe is unusually dangerous, follow these steps:
  1. Tell your employer/supervisor that you are refusing work because of a health or safety concern.
  2. Do not leave the worksite without your employer's permission.
  3. Contact your occupational health committee (OHC) or OHS representative if you cannot resolve the concern with the employer/supervisor.
  4. Your OHC will investigate the refusal, meet and vote to determine if you have reasonable grounds to refuse the work. (The vote must be unanimous for or against the refusal.)
  5. If the concern cannot be resolved within your workplace, contact an occupational health officer at the Occupational Health and Safety Division.
  6. The officer will investigate the refusal and rule on the matter.
Your place of employment may have its own procedures for refusing unusually dangerous work.  Ask your supervisor, occupational health committee, occupational health and safety representative, and/or union steward for information.

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This email and any attachment(s) are confidential and may be privileged. If you are not the intended recipient please notify GSU, delete this email and do not copy, use or disclose it.