Price Manufacturing

Good day

Our Local has taken a step into a new sector for our membership, with the signing of a new contractor Price Manufacturing in Calgary Alberta.
In early 2015 Business Agent Pat Tilley and I met with Todd Price the owner of Price Manufacturing. Mr. Price is a Union Mechanical Insulator by trade, who started his company to provide high quality fittings, removable covers, and other metal products for the Mechanical Insulation trade.

After significant consultation between Mr. Price, Pat Tilley and then Derek Stock as Southern Business Agent, and myself it was finally decided that although this shop produces similar products to what is produced onsite, the nature of the business, the equipment used in fabrication, and the exacting reproduction of each fitting made it impossible to unionize this business under the Provincial Construction Collective Agreement. So, in March 2020 Local 110 completed bargaining on an independent Shop Collective Agreement and on June 29, 2020 it was signed along with a voluntary recognition for Price Manufacturing.

This is a fabrication facility that has had up to six employees at one time working on direct fabrication. Currently, they brought with them two employees that were already working for the company, these individuals will be indentured shortly into the Alberta apprenticeship program, and they hired one of our Calgary Red Seal Journeyman Members to be a working Foreman. With demand for the products increasing both in Canada and the USA, the company will be looking for more of Members to fill in their manpower needs. However, there will be a learning curve for even the most experienced of our Journeyman that take the call.

In close I would like to say welcome and congratulations to our two new members and thank Price Manufacturing for partnering with Local 110 into the future.

In solidarity

Kevin Lecht                                                                          

Business Manager

Hall Reopening Update

Good day Union Family

As I announced before we were scheduled to reopen the Union office on July 6, 2020. Unfortunately, due to an infestation in the outside walls from goffers the reopen date has been pushed back to July 13, 2020. This is to allow the exterminators time to do their work.

When you come to the office you will notice that there have been a few changes. There have been plexiglass barriers installed at the service windows. Members will still be filling out the COVID screening form and having their temperature taken on arrival. There will be a limit of four individuals in the upstairs at one time, and we will be utilizing the small meeting room in the front area when meeting with members instead of taking them into our individual offices.

Cleaning of the common areas has increased. The office will be open from 8:30 am to 4:00 pm and closed 12:00 pm to 1:00 pm to allow the staff time to clean the common areas and touch points.

Although, restrictions are being lifted and Local 110 is reopening our doors, COVID is still a major health concern. The last thing we want is to have members becoming ill due to being at the hall, especially since the nature of our trade has left a number of members with lung and breathing issues. So, we ask that if you feel ill, or can complete your business over the phone, email, or through the website please consider not coming to the office.

Unfortunately, I have a few days booked off to take my sons camping, so I will not be in until later that week.

In solidarity

Kevin Lecht                                                                          

Business Manager

Cessco Lockout of Boilermakers 146

Good day Union Family

The Boilermakers Lodge 146 has been in Collective Bargaining for a new shop agreement with Cessco for an extended period of time, and now the company has locked out the employees, all members of Boilermakers Lodge 146.

Currently, I do not know the issues that have led to the Lockout, nor do they matter. A Lockout, the same as a Strike, is a breakdown of the Collective Bargaining process. It results in uncertainty for the workers, the union, the company and clients, and in the end no matter the outcome it will damage relationships. Local 110 strongly advocates for an orderly Collective Bargaining process and to that end we hope for a speedy resolution to this Lockout.

To this end, Local 110 will provide signage to any member that wishes to attend the picket line in solidarity to end this Lockout. Additionally, some of the officers and myself will be attending the picket line, at 7310-99 street, on Thursday July 2, 2020 over our lunch break, to show support for the bargaining process. Hopefully, some of our members will join us, I will bring extra signs.

There are some who feel this is not Local 110’s issue. True, Cessco is not a signatory contractor to Local 110, and they have used nonunion companies for their mechanical insulation needs for almost a decade. Also, Boilermakers Lodge 146 is not affiliated with the Building Trades of Alberta and they were resistant to helping with our organizing efforts against the companies that were doing insulation at these shops. However, these are issues that can be worked on in the future, for now the focus needs to be on putting as much pressure as possible on both groups to get back to the table and bargain fairly.

In solidarity

Kevin Lecht                                                                          

Business Manager

Canada Day July 1st

 

Good day Union Family

Just a quick reminder that Wednesday this week is July 1st, Canada Day and our offices in both Calgary and Edmonton will be closed, and the Staff and Officers will have the day off.

The Business Agents and I can still be contacted by Email or on our cell phone in the case of emergencies.

In solidarity

Kevin Lecht  

Business Manager

Hazardous Material Handler Helpers and Mechanics List

Good day Union Family
With the current work situation there has been interest from some of our Mechanical Insulation Members, to work under the Demolition Agreement as Hazardous Material Handlers.

As reported before, this work is completed at significantly lower rates of pay and benefits, than the rates paid to Mechanical Insulators. As such at the last Local 110 Executive Board Meeting on June 18, 2020, the Board made the motion and it passed unanimously, to have a separate unemployed list for Hazardous Material Handlers. When a Mechanical Insulation Member, takes a call as a Hazardous Material Handler, their name will remain on the Insulator Unemployed list and it will rise in the usual way. The hope is this will open opportunities for more of our current members without limiting the possibilities for future work as an Insulator.

The only requirements to sign this list is you must have a valid Alberta Asbestos Removal Ticket and a valid Pulmonary Function test. To be listed as a Mechanic, you must be assessed based on experience doing Hazardous Removal by a signatory contractor working under this agreement.

For any member that are interested in placing their name on the Hazardous Material Handler list please call the Edmonton Union Hall at (780) 426-2874.

In solidarity

Kevin Lecht

Business Manager 

Member Eamon Farrelly Passed Away

Local 110 is sad to announce that Member Eamon Farrelly passed away June 21st, 2020. Brother Eamon has been a Local 110 member since November 1977.

A private service will be held. In lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Brother Eamon  may be made to the Canadian Cancer Society.

Local 110 Officers, Staff and Members extend their deepest condolences to all of Brother Eamon’s Family and Friends.

Kevin Lecht

Business Manager

Re Opening of Local 110 office

Good day Union Family

The last number of weeks the Local 110 office in Calgary and Edmonton have been closed, except for those individuals that make an appointment with restrictions in place. This has included completing the COVID 19 screening paperwork and having your temperature taken with a thermal camera.

As the Province of Alberta moves forward in their reopening, we are looking forward to reopening our offices as well. Currently, we are planning to reopen the offices on Monday July 6th. However, some of the PPE that has been ordered, to ensure the health and safety of our staff, is not yet installed. If the contractor cannot complete the work before July 6th, the opening date will have to be pushed back to accommodate the work.

The next step would be to restart monthly General Membership Meetings. Of-course we will be following Government restrictions at that time. However, current direction from the International office all meetings have been put on hold until further notice. Once we receive the go head Local 110 will commence with monthly meetings again, but there has been no word on when that will be. The Local has had Socially Distanced and Zoom Executive board meetings to conduct business as this situation continues.

In the end the Health and Safety of our Staff, Members, and Officers is the first priority and we will follow the regulations and error on the side of cautions until this pandemic is over.

In solidarity

Kevin Lecht                                                                          

Business Manager

Hazardous Material Handler Helpers and Mechanics

Good day Union Family

Recently you have been seeing calls on our dispatch page for Hazardous Material Handler Helpers and Mechanics. This designation was originally Asbestos Remover in the International Constitution and Bylaws but was changed at the same time as Asbestos Workers was changed to Allied Workers, due to the inability for some members with this designation to find health insurance in the United States. In most cases these workers are not Insulators, they are Asbestos Abatement Members and under the International Constitution and Bylaws they have a different designation, membership card, and per capita tax.

A number of years ago Local 110 started up Local 110A for these workers. The focus of 110A was Commercial Asbestos removal, unfortunately this did not live up to the expectation and 110A became a shell with no membership. In early 2019 one of our Signatory Contractors (AlumaSafway) came to us about the possibility of doing a two year long Asbestos Abatement project for a Client in Central Alberta. This is a full demolition of the plant and could lead to more work as there is a total of five plants slated for demolition in the next few years.

It was clear from the start for a Unionized Contractor to compete in this market they could not pay Insulator wages. The market for Asbestos Abatement Workers in Alberta sits between eighteen dollars per hour on the low side and twenty-five dollars per hour on the high side. After months of consultation and meetings the final rate for a Hazardous Material Mechanic is twenty-eight dollars per hour on the cheque with a total package of thirty-three seventy-five, and a Hazardous Material Helper is twenty-one fifty on the cheque with a total package of twenty-six sixty. Also, in the agreement if Insulators are utilized as Foreman or General Foreman, they will be paid at Insulator rates. Any Insulators working rope access will be paid the insulator rate with a five dollar per hour rope uplift.

In the end the agreement was signed April 2020 for a term of three years for all demolition work for this client. Since, Asbestos Removal is not part of registration bargaining, each project, contractor, or client will have separate agreements that may have variations to the terms and conditions. These agreements are specific to decommissioning and demolition of plants that require Asbestos Abatement. This is not for ongoing maintenance projects that require Asbestos Abatement. These agreements help to secure new work without taking away from our current Mechanical Insulator Agreement terms and conditions.

This is a market that the Union has allowed to be taken over by alternative workforces and this is a small step towards building a workforce and pushing back. It was not the intention that our current Insulator members would be manning these projects, but with all the issues currently it is an option for work if a Member chooses.

In solidarity

Kevin Lecht                                                                          

Business Manager

Foreman Name Hire Process

Good day Union Family

As we all know there are only a few issues that are more polarizing in this Local than name hires and more specifically Foreman name hires.

Currently, under the Provincial Construction Collective Agreement there is the ability for a contractor to hire by name any person who will be engaged as a Foreman. There is no maximum number of Foreman a contractor can have on a project, and there is no specified length of time a member has to be a Foreman after a name hire. The only stipulation on the crew size is, there will be one Foreman for the first three Employees and can supervise up to fifteen, and one Forman for every fifteen employees thereafter.  This was put into place to stop companies from having jobs with no Foreman or having massive crews with only one member being a Foreman. However, we know times have changed, in most cases a large crew for a Foreman would be ten people.

The Local is well aware that we have contractors that abuse the Foreman name hire process. As a Union we follow up on the Foreman name hires to ensure that they are paid Foreman rate and not put down to Journeyman once they complete orientation. In most cases the contractors make sure it is not obvious that they never intended to have the member as a Foreman, but when they do grievances are filed and are usually resolved by the member being made a Foreman. This has also been a huge issue at bargaining for the next Provincial Construction Collective Agreement.

No matter what side of the conversation you fall on everyone understands what some contractors are doing isn’t “right”, but it is not a violation of the Collective Agreement. So, in the end the people that have the power to stop the contractors that are abusing the Foreman name hire is our members. If our members don’t accept Foreman name hires when they know it is questionable that they will be Foreman. If members stop calling soliciting name hires. Then the contractors will be forced to change their process.

In solidarity

Kevin Lecht                                                                          

Business Manager

NABTU Trades Women Build Nations Conference

Good day Union Family

I know a number of our members look forward to the yearly NABTU Trades Women Build Nations Conference. This year the conference was scheduled October 2-5 in Washington DC. Unfortunately, I have just received official notice through our International Office from NABTU that the 2020 Conference has been canceled.

When I receive more information, it will be made available.

In solidarity

Kevin Lecht                                                                          

Business Manager

International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers, Local 110