June 9, 2020

Calendar highlights and upcoming events:

GSU office and administration update
GSU’s offices resumed in-office operations on June 8 in accordance with public health guidelines. Members can continue to call and email GSU staff or book an appointment if an in-person meeting is preferred.

GSU has managed to effectively continue union business and representation while adapting to pandemic reality. As the re-opening phases roll out we are examining additional ways to connect with GSU members while access restrictions to workplaces remain in effect. Please send us any ideas that you might have for new ways to connect.

GSU 2020 scholarship program application extended deadline - Sept. 1
Learn more and download the application forms  here .
Local 15 (Nutrien) members to vote on company's so-called final offer
GSU’s Local 15 bargaining committee met with Nutrien representatives on June 2 and June 5.

At the bargaining meeting on June 5, Nutrien presented a so-called final offer. Details of the offer and a vote on same will be communicated to Local 15 members in the next number of days.
Black Lives Matter and Anti-Racism
The continuing waves of protests and rallies that erupted in the aftermath of the Minneapolis police killing of George Floyd have revealed stark realities of systemic racism in our societies as well as our collective failure to confront and address the scourge of racism. The large and diverse turnouts at the protests and rallies are cause for hope.
In the spirit of what is hopefully a new march toward racial justice and true equality, we offer the following inspirational words from Doctor Martin Luther King.
“The time is always right to do what is right.”
“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”
Personal Family Leave – Locals 1 (Viterra Operations and Maintenance) and 2 (Viterra Office)
In the May 26 Tuesday Members' Memo general secretary Hugh Wagner reported on discussions between Viterra and GSU about the allocation of time to GSU members who use the personal family leave provision (Article 13.9 of the collective agreements ). Specifically, if a member claiming the leave works a modified shift (e.g. 13.3 hours per shift), are they to be paid equivalent time for each day of paid personal family leave (maximum three paid days)?
After receiving comments from Local 1 and 2 members, Wagner followed up with Viterra HR and advises that members claiming paid personal family leave, as provided in GSU’s collective agreements with the employer, will be paid for the number of hours they would have worked if not absent on leave.
“It is important to bear in mind that this provision of the collective agreements with Viterra draws on employees’ accumulated sick leave and it covers the wages lost by the employee just as if they were absent from work on sick leave,” Wagner said. “I appreciate the input received from members on this subject. It helped clarify and resolve the discussion with management.”
Is it COVID, allergies or a cold?
Allergy season is in full swing, and if you suffer from asthma or allergies, you know that having symptoms that can mirror COVID-19 makes being in the vicinity of strangers uncomfortable for everyone.

Check out the attached video with some helpful hints to help control your allergies.

Information on the differences between allergies and COVID-10 is available here: