FortisBC-Re-Integration and Return to Work Telework for FortisBC Members
September 17, 2021
To: All MoveUP Members at FortisBC
Since our last communication, where we identified the company and your union were in discussions regarding the re-integration and return to work, we have been able to negotiate an extension to the telework agreement that was set to expire on September 18, 2021.
It is important to note, that even though we have been able to negotiate an extension to December 31, 2021, the company has identified that some classifications will be required to return to their work locations 100% of the time, and other classifications will have two options that will be put in place.
We have received numerous emails and comments from the membership on wanting the union to advocate for them to stay home considering the ongoing climb in COVID-19 numbers and the uncertainty of the Delta variant. We hear and understand the concerns and we empathize with all of your sentiments, and we have tirelessly advocated on your behalf with the company to have the membership to remain at home, unfortunately, the company has different plans.
The membership’s concerns, comments and hesitation to return is not lost on your union, but the overall direction and control of where members work lies with the company, as they own the right to direct members to report to work, not the union. We have and will continue to advocate on behalf of the membership to remain at home, however, our challenge is that we have no legal ability to direct our members to stay home, and that you are to defy the direction to report to work.
To highlight the important aspect of the reporting to work that is seen in the Memorandum of Agreement, it is as follows:
1.The company will require certain classifications and workgroups to return to their permanent headquarters 100% of the time, as per pre-COVID-19. For remaining classifications and/or workgroups, as determined by the company, employees currently teleworking, in accordance with the Telework MOA, will return to their permanent headquarters in the following manner:
Employees will start with one alternating week onsite as determined by the company with the expectation to increase to a full return to the employees assigned headquarters and/or work location.
Employees will work three days in one week as determined by the company, then two days the following week as determined by the company with the expectation to increase to a full return to the employees assigned headquarters and/or work location.
This means that the company will be identifying which classifications it wants to return to work 100% of the time, which from what we know as relayed by some of members, has already been communicated to certain classifications. If the company determines that your classification is not required in the office 100% of the time, then they will be implementing either option 1 or option 2.
This agreement will be revisited prior to the expire date of December 31, 2021. You can see the MOA in its entirety here.
Cindy A. Lee