April 5, 2013

Volume 43, No. 13


Agreement at General Dynamics in London, Ontario

CAW Local 27 members who work at General Dynamics Lands Systems in London, Ontario have voted 86 per cent in favour of a new three-year agreement that includes cost of living increases and bonuses in each year of the deal.
 
The CAW represents approximately 530 workers at the plant who voted on the deal March 26. General Dynamics manufactures armoured vehicles, including the LAV III and Stryker, at the London plant. It employs about 2,300 workers in London.
 
The new agreement includes a $1,500 bonus in the first year and a $1,000 bonus in each of the other remaining years.
 
Other gains include improvements to medical benefits and gains in the pension plan such as an extra $1 in the basic benefit level in years one and three. As well, the new contract includes an increased early retirement incentive.
 
"This agreement was a direct result of the determination of the bargaining committee and the ongoing support the bargaining team received from the membership," said Fergo Berto, CAW national representative.

CAW Reaches Tentative Agreement with Dynamex

The Canadian Auto Workers Union (CAW) has reached and signed a tentative agreement with Dynamex, a division of Montreal-based transportation conglomerate TransForce Inc. (TFI-T).
 
CAW Local 114 represents 240 workers at one of the largest bargaining units at Dynamex covering Vancouver and the surrounding areas. The group includes bike couriers and dependent contractor owner operators, providing same day, dedicated, and cartage courier service.
 
 "The CAW pushed hard for a fair deal for the workers at Dynamex in Vancouver," said CAW National Representative Gavin McGarrigle. "Our members were determined to see real gains in their collective agreement, recognizing the challenges and pressures associated with their work. We believe the union has delivered that for them," he said.
 
The union bargaining committee is unanimously recommending acceptance of the new agreement and ratification meetings are set for this Sunday, April 7.
 
The union had set a strike deadline for 12:01 a.m. on Wednesday, April 3, 2013. The strike deadline has been lifted pending ratification of the tentative agreement. The workers at Dynamex voted 77 per cent in favour of strike action on March 11, 2013 and had been without a new contract for more than a year - April 1, 2012.
 
The CAW represents thousands of courier drivers throughout Canada at Transforce including Loomis Express, ICS Courier and TST Overland divisions and also at DHL.


National Auto Strategy Meeting in Ottawa

CAW National President Ken Lewenza met with Prime Minister Stephen Harper March 5 in Ottawa to discuss issues facing Canada's auto industry. During the meeting Lewenza reaffirmed his support for Ottawa's recent extension of the Automotive Innovation Fund and also urged the Prime Minister to take additional measures to strengthen future investment, production and exports in the sector.
 
Lewenza presented Harper with a copy of the CAW's 50-page policy brief Re-Thinking Canada's Auto Industry, which includes numerous proposals to strengthen the auto industry.
 

Redouble Efforts to End Workplace Fatalities

Letter from CAW National President Ken Lewenza to all Local Unions:
 
Unfortunately, this year has started tragically for us.  On January 29, Brother Raphael Figueros (CAW Local 1859, Johnson Controls) was killed on the job while working on a mould.  On March 15, Brother John Reid (CAW Local 1917, Concast Pipe) was critically injured when a tow motor ran over his legs.  These are devastating events that should never happen in our workplaces.
 
As National President, I am urging local unions to redouble their efforts to prevent workplace fatalities and critical injuries. Five CAW members have died as a result of their work since our last Day of Mourning ceremony was held at CAW Council, in April 2012.
These deaths have occurred in such diverse workplaces as the fisheries and manufacturing facilities. Regardless of the location, the events have devastated families, workplaces and communities.  We all pay for these predictable and preventable deaths and injuries through our health care system, social support systems and our own personal family support systems.
 
I implore everyone to spend time reflecting on how we intensify our efforts to prevent such tragedies from occurring in future. We must continue to advocate for stronger workplace safety education, fully functioning Health & Safety committees and committed enforcement programs in all jurisdictions across Canada. 
 
I encourage you to put this on the agenda of your next executive board and membership meetings.
 
Thank you in advance for your consideration on this critical issue.

Stephen Lewis Foundation HIV/AIDS Solidarity Tour

The Stephen Lewis Foundation is bringing three labour/community and HIV activists from Africa to tour Winnipeg and a series of Ontario cities in May of 2013.
 
The goal is to engage labour locals, raise awareness about the pandemic and build relationships in communities from Winnipeg, to Thunder Bay to Toronto. The Tour will provide a forum for African activists to tell their stories, share expertise and talk about their challenges and triumphs in dealing with the ravages of AIDS in their communities and workplaces.
 
The Stephen Lewis Foundation works with community groups that are turning the tide of HIV/AIDS in Africa by providing care and support to grandmothers, orphaned children, women and people living with or affected by HIV and AIDS. Since 2003, the Foundation has funded more than 700 initiatives, partnering with 300 grassroots organizations in the 15 African countries hardest hit by the pandemic.

The tour gets underway Thursday, May 2 at 7 p.m. at the Ontario Federation of Labour Building, 15 Gervais Drive in Toronto. To find out more about the tour including dates, times and for a location near you please visit www.solidaritytour.ca/


CAW Insurance Contest

CAW is pleased to announce that all active and retired CAW members can benefit from an exclusive CAW Group Automobile and Home Insurance Program brought to you by Breckles Insurance Brokers and Aviva.
 
Plus, you can win a $5,000 travel voucher to go anywhere in the world!
 
To benefit from your CAW group home and auto program, and have a chance to win a $5,000
travel voucher, call today for a comparative quote at 1-877-229-4677.

Our Union. Our Insurance. Our Service Team.

 

CAW Staff Appointment

As a result of CAW National Representative Sukhvinder Johl's retirement, CAW President Ken Lewenza has appointed Barry Lines, Financial Secretary of CAW Local 252, as service representative working out of the CAW's Toronto office, effective Sunday, April 14, 2013.

 

New Humanitarian Award at CAW Local 199

The Niagara Regional Skilled Trades Council awarded CAW Local 199 member and Council President Ed Gould a humanitarian award for his over 20 years of dedication to fighting intolerance and injustice. The NRSTC is also preparing, starting in 2014, to give the "Ed Gould Humanitarian Award" to a member of the NRSTC or their son or daughter who best demonstrates the same traits as Ed has over the years. Along with this award, the recipient will receive $500 to be donated to the charity of their choice. CAW Local 199 is based in St. Catharines, Ontario.

Pictured above is Gary Martin, CAW-GM skilled trades representative and NRSTC vice-president, giving Gould the award. Gould received the award at a surprise 60th birthday party.
 


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