January 26, 2021

Calendar highlights and upcoming events:
GSU Convention - Regina, SK - March 18 & 19

All available in-person credentials have now been assigned to delegates. If you received a registration notice and are interested in attending the convention online, take a moment to complete your registration form and send it back to GSU in order to secure your spot.

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Local 1 (Viterra) delegates, Local 2 (Viterra Office) executive members meet, approve salary schedule changes, and elect officers
GSU Local 1 (Viterra Operations/Maintenance) delegates and the Local 2 (Viterra head office) executive committee members have agreed to a proposal from Viterra management to make modest increases to most of the minimums and maximums of the salary structures in the collective agreements covering country operations and maintenance and Regina head office employees.
The increases to the minimum salaries in the Local 1 collective agreement range from 1.17% to 2.46% while the increases to maximums range from zero to 2.51%. In the Local 2 collective agreement, increases to the minimum rates of pay range from 1.06% to 2.16% and increases to the maximum rates of pay range from zero to 2.16%. The changes, effective Jan. 1, 2021, were proposed by Viterra following a market survey conducted by their HR department.
“GSU is not about to say no to improvements to rates of pay no matter how modest, but at the same time we urged Viterra to give every employee a wage increase of at least 2.0% effective January 1,“ said GSU general secretary Hugh Wagner. “It was pointed out to management that the current so-called pay for performance system is grossly unfair and undervalues employees.”
“While making arguments for better pay in this situation, we are also aware that the collective agreement is not open for bargaining until the autumn of 2022,” Wagner said. “An examination of rates of pay shows there is a lot of work to do at the bargaining table and it will take a very strong push by GSU members to get rid of or reform the current pay system at the next round of bargaining.”
When the Local 1 delegates met on Jan.20 to discuss Viterra’s proposals, they also elected Jim Brown (Balgonie) and Gaylyn Kennedy (North Battleford) to be Local 1’s president and vice-president. Glenn Outram (Moose Jaw), Matt Denomie (Kindersley), and David Barrett (Gull Lake) were elected to the Local 1 executive committee.
GSU Local 2's executive committee is comprised of Sheila Tran, Howard Wilson and Kaylee Kruger. They met and approved the changes to the salary ranges on Jan. 22.

If you have questions, contact your GSU staff representative.

Is there something you would like to see GSU doing differently? Submit your recommendation as a resolution to the GSU convention

GSU's biennial convention is where important policies, plans, and changes are discussed, debated and implemented. If you have a suggestion or see something you would like implemented or done differently within GSU, let us know. Contact your GSU staff rep and they can assist you in preparing a resolution to submit to convention.

You don't need to attend convention in order to submit a resolution.

Send your resolutions to us at gsu@gsu.ca.

Bitterly cold weather created unanticipated furnace issues for a GSU member.
GSU staff rep Donna Driediger assisted a member who thought they were required to take a vacation day or use banked time off to deal with their furnace when it stopped working overnight. The already stressful situation was made worse when the member realized they had nothing left in their vacation bank and no banked time.
Donna directed the member to Article 13.9 of the Local 1 (Viterra) collective agreement which gives members access to personal family leave to attend to emergent situations requiring their immediate attention. This time is charged to the employee's sick bank and allows them to prepare a plan or tend to the situation.
The member was obviously relieved to hear that when their furnace died, they were not also going to be out a day's wages.

“Personal family leave can cover issues that are health related, family related, or anything of an urgent nature that you have to deal with,” Donna advises. “In this case it was a broken furnace. Another example could be learning you had a serious health issue and wanting to attend a session with a nurse practitioner to learn more or receive instructions.”
If you have questions about personal family leave or what may qualify, contact your GSU staff rep. 

Contacting GSU doesn't mean you are obligated to file a grievance. We will work with you to answer your questions, recommend what course of action is best to follow, and find the solutions that work best for you.

These services are provided to you as part of your union dues. There is no additional charge for assisting you.

Jan. 28 is Bell's LET'S TALK day
"According to the Mental Health Commission, on any given week more than 500,000 Canadians are unable to go to work due to mental health problems."
~ Bell Let's Talk web page

A sign of good mental health is having the willingness and ability to think about and deal with everyday
challenges. When you consider that statement and how it applies to you, how do you feel you are doing?

COVID-19 continues to put additional strain on everybody as we try to negotiate the many changes that have been forced upon us by the pandemic. If you are struggling with your metal health, help is available. Reach out to a support person, contact your GSU staff rep, and visit Bell's LET'S TALK website to access helpful resources and learn more: