Available to all UFCW 401 members, this new and exciting online course explores how we must navigate a rapidly changing landscape for working people.

We have all seen our fair share of challenges through the years. 2020 and 2021, however, seemed to throw an awful lot at us all at once. Anti-worker sentiments of some governments are dismantling protections that took decades to achieve and replacing it with devastating legislation, which seeks to muzzle you from speaking truth to power. They are also attacking your right to all the benefits of collective action and strength that come with belonging to a vibrant and robust union. 

And then there are the enormous challenges we continue to face as we navigate the devastating effects of COVID-19 on the membership. Our fellow UFCW 401 members have rarely seen such challenging times.

These realities, and more, have inspired us to team up with the Alberta Federation of Labour to develop a course that will assist us in attracting and nurturing active, engaged leaders like yourself. Representation and Leadership in Hard Times is our first crack at developing concrete strategies and a shared vision for turning passion into action.

The Steward Certification Program is to recognize active stewards in Your Union!

We will have a certification dinner one night for all stewards who qualify for the certification program. Once you have submitted your application to the Education Department they will be in contact to go through the details further with you.

Please note you will have to have been a Shop Steward for 2 consecutive years to be considered, as well as have met the criteria for the activism credits.

Below you can find the link to the application and form letter to complete the application process.

If you have any questions with regard to the application please feel free to contact Kevin Braun; toll free 1-800-252-7975 or 780-452-0362

Stewards Certification Application

Steward Certification Program Volunteer Letter

The reality is that in today’s economy we often bear a large burden when trying to make ends meet for ourselves and families, and the cycle of debt can be paralyzing for those affected.

This course provides money skills training and encourages participants to be proactive, rather than reactive, in tackling issues related to their personal finances. We will learn skills and be given the tools that will enable us to gain control over our financial futures.

There are many examples of violence – domestic violence, reduced tolerance of others, and violence in the workplace by customers, clients and co-workers. Unfortunately, for far too long this problem has been accepted as “part of the job.” This course will help you to recognize bullying in the workplace and the impact it has on workers. The course will equip you with effective methods of dealing with the behaviour and the consequences to the victims.




Changing your workplace, Changing your world

You’re part of a union, now what?

It’s not a trivial question. It can be challenging to wrap your head around a union the size of UFCW Local 401.

In what political work does the union engage? How does the union advance the rights of women and young workers? And what about engagement in the community?

This course will introduce you to Alberta’s largest private-sector union and discuss how the involvement of members is a vital part of UFCW Local 401’s success.

This course will look at the legal requirements for an employer and/or a union regarding accommodating a worker in the workplace based on the protected grounds of the Human Rights Act. Though accommodations typically revolve around medical issues, they can also encompass familial status issues as well and those topics will be covered in this course. The duty to accommodate applies equally to employers and trade unions in the province of Alberta. We will look at the specific obligations of employers, unions and workers.

Accurate note taking is an essential requirement for Shop Stewards. Appropriate note taking can be accomplished through effective listening skills, which we will discuss in this course. There are many different types of notes that are required. We will look at all the different styles that will be needed in the workplace.

You cannot do one single thing in this country without feeling the effects of government. Operating in Canada cannot be done without the hand of government intervening. We will review how government was created, what the constitution has given us and how we link these factors to responsible government. This course will also introduce participants to the election process and how to get involved in campaigns around election time.

This public speaking is designed to provide training and practical experience in all facets of verbal communication, including speech preparation and delivery, impromptu talks, introduction techniques, controlling nervousness and effective participation in meetings. As tomorrow’s leaders, it is important that we develop our ability to listen, think and speak clearly. This is an excellent course for anyone active in the union, in the community or in a leadership position.

Learn the principles of trade unionism and union thinking.  Learn how to represent yourself and your co-workers with management. We will deal with the grievance procedure (interviews, investigations, note taking, and an introduction to contract language).  We will also deal with the aspect of facing management and issues with bullying and violence in the workplace.

We will also deal with union myths, common likes and dislikes of the union along with the roles and responsibilities of being a Steward with UFCW Local 401. We will also deal with organizing, collective bargaining, and some basic health and safety training.

If you are interested in becoming a Shop Steward please contact your Union Representative.

The fast paced retail environment comes with its own unique challenges in many areas, not least of which with occupational health and safety.  Every worker deserves to come home safe and healthy at the end of their work day.  This course is specifically designed for our retail workers.  They will learn how to identify health and safety problems at work; become familiar with health and safety law, including the right to refuse unsafe work.

Working with employee weekly schedules can be tricky, particularly at Superstores and Liquorstores.  There are many provisions in the Union Contract pertaining to scheduling and it can seem a little daunting to members who try to make sure the employer isn’t making mistakes with these schedules or using it as a weapon against workers.  This course is designed to assist Shop Stewards and activists in navigating the various rules surrounding their own and their co-workers’ schedules.  Once an employee has completed this course they will be in a position to be the eyes and the ears in their store on all matters relating to schedules and distributed hours.

Future Courses