Depot AV Blackout Grievance
March 23, 2017
TO: All CMBC Depot Coordinators and Workleaders
Recently we have received several questions about the status of the depot annual vacation blackouts. We became aware of these blackouts when the employer issued the first version of the vacation sign-up late last year. We met with the employer to raise our concerns, and the employer agreed to remove some of the blackout periods from the sign-up. However, as you know, there were still blackout periods over and above those which were traditionally in place for operator sign-ups.
It is our view that there is no essential departmental requirement which requires the additional blackout periods. Furthermore, the practice of blacking out vacation in outlying depots in response to vacation periods being selected by Workleaders at Vancouver Transit Centre violates the collective agreement and is akin to a consolidated sign-up, which the union has consistently rejected for years. Your union therefore initiated a grievance at Stage 2 and subsequently met with the employer for a Stage 2 grievance hearing. The employer denied the grievance shortly thereafter. In response, we advanced the grievance to arbitration.
The grievance is now scheduled to be heard on Tuesday, June 13 and Friday, June 16, 2017, by Arbitrator Robert B. Blasina. We have also engaged the assistance of our arbitration specialist, Brian Nelson, to assist with this case going forward. We recognize the time-sensitivity of this grievance, and therefore will attempt to move the arbitration forward sooner in the event that earlier dates become available to us.
If you have questions or concerns related to this grievance please feel free to contact us to discuss.
Stephen Von Sychowski, Union Representative
Alicia Gallo, Vice-President Combined Units