New Kaybob Members Get Ready to Negotiate!

UFCW Local 401 Proudly Welcomes our Newest Members From Kaybob Lodge.

We are thrilled to announce the addition of the hard working employees of CIVEO at Kaybob Lodge to UFCW Local 401.

The recent vote by Kaybob workers to join the ranks of our nearly 30,000 members across Alberta is great news for all who work in the oil and gas industry. Collectively there is strength in these difficult economic times. And now we get down to work!

First, UFCW 401 leadership will need to find the perfect fit for Kaybob employees’ in terms of a full-time Union Representative. Whoever is assigned will be highly skilled in worker advocacy and dealing with management. This will happen as quickly as possible in order to ensure we can begin the negotiations process. Once that is done, and one of our very capable Union Reps has been assigned, things get rolling.

A Union Representative will begin the process of gathering a list of employee proposals that will be taken to their employer by a union negotiating committee comprised of workers from the various departments and their Union Representative and professional negotiators.

Members will be asked to submit their “wish list” for workplace and compensation improvements through both mail-in surveys and also have the option to attend proposal meetings in person if they prefer, which will be arranged in the coming weeks. We always want to make sure that workers have options for their participation in the negotiating process and providing multiple ways to participate is a part of that effort.

Achieving a first union contract, or “Collective Agreement”, is an interesting and challenging task and UFCW Local 401 will be eager to hear from the workers at Kaybob Lodge about what they want to see improved in their workplace. Surveys and proposal meetings will be key to not only developing proposals but also for developing a negotiations strategy based on feedback we receive from Kaybob workers. Mass participation is essential in achieving the best possible contract and we are looking forward to working with the employees to ensure the success of this process.

Workers can expect to be surveyed about their thoughts surrounding workloads, workplace health and safety, work schedules, wages, benefits and a wide array of other topics. And of course there will be plenty of opportunity for them to talk to us about anything we may not have inquired about specifically. The members own this process and we are there to assist and work toward a Union Contract they can be happy with.

Other important considerations for terms in the contract will be things like how to deal with disputes in the workplace. In other words, how complaints or grievances are dealt with. As well, seniority rights for job opportunities and layoff and recall rights are always important in this ever-changing industry.

The union will also begin the process of developing a union negotiating committee comprised of Kaybob employees. The surveys that will be sent to members will canvass people who may be interested in serving on the negotiating committee. Anyone interested can also contact the Union Rep and let them know of their interest.

And finally, there will also be Shop Stewards appointed. Shop Stewards are Kaybob employees who will tend to the day-to-day questions and needs of their fellow Local 401 members. These Stewards will be provided ample paid training and support and be in a position to assist the Union Rep in ensuring workplace concerns are addressed in a timely fashion. Shop Stewards are the employees’ first line of defense when it comes to issues that arise at work. However, when it comes to more challenging or complex issues, the Union Representative is always there to provide guidance and assistance to Stewards and their co-workers.

Ultimately, unions provide workers with a healthy equalizer in the employer/employee relationship and workers who join together to bargain collectively inevitably have more success in achieving a fair and equitable workplace environment. It’s not a “silver bullet”, but it does provide a mechanism for resolving complaints and takes away the arbitrary decision making process from the employer, and that is always a good thing. We always seek to come to an amicable resolution with employers, but when a little more pressure is needed, there is a support system in place within a unionized workplace.

Kaybob employees can expect to be contacted in the coming weeks by their new union in order to get their input for negotiations. Please standby for more information on this.

In the meantime, Kaybob employees can reach out to Saba Mossagizi at 780-920-3773 or should they have any questions.

Welcome Kaybob employees! We are proud to represent you!