January 24, 2003


I am writing to all the Shop Stewards in all the Locations in the Scarborough Local. You have taken on an enormous task in this coming year; you will be faced with the day-to-day task of resolving employee problems and or filing grievances on their behalf. In addition this is a year where the Collective Agreement expires, and you may have to deal with a Strike, employees without income, organizing and maintaining a Picket Line at your work Location, and a new collective agreement with new rules.

Shop Stewards should also remember that they are not elected to represent the opinions of members in their station, but to enforce the Collective Agreement, and the positions of the Union. Sometimes this is contrary to the opinions of the members who elect them. The duties of a Shop Steward outlined in the Local Bylaws is attached below.

Enforcing Health & Safety and Work Rules are always a problem, only the subject changes. Once you resolve one broken case, there will be another problem just around the corner.  

Temporary Employees and their problems require a lot of time and effort as the employer will use and abuse whenever they can, and not pay them properly on top of that. There are a lot of temporary employees who have become part time and full time recently and their rights are substantively different, ensuring they know their new rights and access to benefits is an ongoing battle. The recent increases in relief should reduce the number of temporary workers needed on many days.

The Local office is always available to assist you with grievance information, Pay Problems, Health & Safety and Injuries at work (WSIB). There is a Local website with some helpful information at: www.scarboroughcupw.org. Grievances are heard every Wednesday Morning at 280 Progress Ave with the Zone Managers. There is a monthly Steward Meeting in the evening where recent arbitration decisions are discussed and supplied and station problems are addressed. There is also a Monthly Union Management Meeting on the Second Wednesday of each month were unresolved issues are discussed.

I encourage all new Shop Stewards to attend the Spring Educational put on by the Regional Office and take the Basic or Advanced Shop Steward course if you have not taken it in the past. 

I trust that you will find this year of change a challenge and there will be some satisfaction in helping you brothers and sisters.

In Solidarity

Mike Duquette
Scarborough Local


The Local Shop Steward shall:

a)         Be the link between the Executive Committee and the members of his/her work shift;

b)         Promotes the polices of the Union and enforces the National Constitution and decisions of the members taken at National Convention, through a referendum or at a General Membership meeting;

c)         Ensures a strong Union presence on his/her work shift;

d)         Enforces the Collective Agreement;

e)         Regularly informs the members of the decision of a General Membership meeting, the activities of the Union, the Union publications and any other item of interest for the Union and well-being of the membership;

f)         Promotes the objectives of the Union and those of the Labour movements in general;

g)         As advisor for the workers, defends the interests of the members he/she represents, in all cases;

h)         Keeps the Local President advised at all times on all problems, complaints and grievances among the membership;