President's Message - March 18th, 2020

Members and Retirees of Local 5328

Some updates for you. 

 At 4:00 pm today the company called a meeting with myself, Mike Hnatjuk, Andrew Chetwynd and Greg Chaison. The meeting had all management as well as Charles Frechette and Luc Trempe on conference call. 

 Again, the union and H/S committees voiced your concerns! The company responded with,  “the fact that we supply many customers that are the supply chain to the big three automakers”, that are now shutting down across North America due to Covid-19, “we must continue to produce and supply”. 

 The company again stated, business as usual and the big three information had not been present at their production meetings earlier in the day. Basically, it’s one day at a time. They stressed on protecting their workers and asking all to be part of the process. 

 I asked the company if they had any plan in place in case customer orders ceased or we had a contamination? They are not prepared at all!! 

 So after some heated discussions, the company was willing to do everything it takes to keep workers safe, at work! Except to allow the requests made with LOA’s, vacation, etc. 

 They have put together a template of an action plan that they asked the group to finalize and execute.  If that’s all we have, then let’s go with it and protect our members. We stressed that from this point on, H/S must be fully involved and communicated to. Senior management didn’t expect anything less. I demanded answers to my inquiries and they said they will answer but are awaiting direction from the Federal and provincial governments. In essence, as far as shutdown or time off,  they will do what is imposed by law and nothing more. 

 The plan: 

 There will be a communication board by punch clock area specifically for  Covid-19 with practices and contact numbers and any pertinent information. 

 -The company will start a split lunch and break times with no more that 3 or 4 people in a lunchroom at a time. 

-a monitoring system is being investigated where as a qualified person to screen workers coming in. Taking temperature and questions. 

-cleaning and sanitizer products will be available and used to sanitize tools, railings, handles, etc. 

-all workers will be given time at the beginning and end of their shift to clean their work area and wipe down tools. 

-Janitorial services will double up every week day, once in the morning and once in the evening,Monday to Friday.   Weekends  will be added. 

-Most shadow training will cease as to creat social distancing.

-Shower and clean up time will now be scheduled and once completed, each group will go to a designated area to wait till the hour to swipe out. This will be after the night shift, start of day shift as that is the most populated time of day. 

 Here is the schedule: 

 -6:15- Furnace and  oil temper. One person must stay back at each job until a relief is in. Once finished shower or clean up, The group is to wait in the resource room at a safe distance, about two meters away from one another. If this space is to small, there will be an alternate area. 

 -6:30- Wire draw, stabilizer and test. Once finished shower or clean up, The group is to wait in the Cafeteria at a safe distance, about two meters away from one another. 

 -6:45- Cleaning line operators, drivers and bundlers. Once finished shower or clean up, it should be 7:00 am and time to swipe out. 

 Some of the JHSC committee will be assisting this process as it’s what we have for now. Until our government forces otherwise, we all do our part we can decrease chances of any spread. 

 I anticipate the Federal and Provincial  governments will announce some changes tomorrow, as they have been doing daily. 

 There was a change today with the Federal government and I have attached that to this email. 

 Again, we will not give up on doing everything in our power and putting pressure on the company to make sure you are safe in the workplace. 

 In solidarity, 

Anthony Ciaramella 
USW Local 5328