Author Archive

Steward, Committee, and Delegate Nominations

To all Local 4304 members,

A reminder that nominations for the coming election for Stewards, Committees, and Delegates are STILL OPEN with several positions available to members in both bargaining units.  Members have until the end of the May General Membership Meeting on Wednesday (May 19th) to submit nominations for themselves or other members (the other member must also accept the nomination before nominations close) to run and serve in the various steward, committee, and delegate positions.  Election day for stewards, committees, and delegates is Wednesday, June 16, 2021.

The nomination tracker is located here: https://tiny.cc/2021Local4304Nominations

At the time of writing this, there has yet to be any nominations submitted for the following positions (descriptions of each committee included):

  • Local 4304 Young Workers Committee: The Young Workers Committee sets its own agenda for activism that upholds the integrity of Unifor’s constitution and the union’s progressive policies with the viewpoint of young workers in mind. The Young Workers Committee raises awareness of issues specific to young workers and young people in general with local union leadership and the local union membership, provides outreach to young members in the workplace and connects them with the union, advocates on behalf of young workers in the union and in the community, supports the work of other union committees and their campaign efforts, lending expertise and providing fresh insight into issues through a young worker perspective, and builds links with other progressive-minded and youth groups in the community and across the country, including student groups, youth environmental groups and social service groups. The National Union has defined a ‘young worker’ as someone who is 35 years of age or younger.
  • GRT Fleet Training & Joint Apprenticeship Committees (Fleet only):  The Fleet Training Committee assesses training requirements and makes recommendations for training programs sponsored by the employer and provides constructive feedback on training sponsored by the Employer in order to support the efficient and effective maintenance and repair of the GRT Fleet. The committee will focus on training requirements pertaining to: Electrical systems, suspension systems, HVAC systems, engine and transmission diagnosis, air systems, and brake systems. The committee will contribute to the development of standard operating procedures through a review process as well as make recommendations for training to support the introduction of new technology.  The Joint Apprenticeship Committee will be composed of the same members as the Fleet Training Committee and discusses matters of interest to the parties in relation to apprentices and apprenticeships at GRT.
  • GRT Joint Health & Safety Committee (Fleet positions – 1 from Kitchener, 1 from Cambridge): The purpose of the Joint Health & Safety Committee is to work co-operatively with the employer in identifying and resolving safety and health issues in support of a planned occupational safety and health program and to prevent occupational injuries and diseases in the workplace.
  • GRT New Members Committee (Fleet position): The New Members Committee conducts the Unifor New Member Orientation Program and distributes a new member ‘Welcome Kit’ to all new members in their division with the goal of promoting union membership, participation in union activities and functions, educating members on the role of the union in their workplace, explaining the importance of following and defending their collective agreement and provides information about their many union representatives.
  • GRT Operations Committee (Specialized Dispatch position, and Fleet positions – 1 from Kitchener, 1 from Cambridge): The Operations Committee works to improve working conditions related to placement of bus stops, performance of on-street operations, traffic control signals, pavement markings, street signs, turning movements, vehicle equipment layout and operation, workplace equipment layout and operation, etc. Per the GRT Collective Agreement the committee meets every two months with GRT Planning, Operations and Fleet staff/management to propose and discuss ideas to effect changes.
  • GRT Return to Work Committee (Fleet position): The purpose of the Return To Work Committee is to make recommendations/provide input on modified duties that could be made available to members during the return to work process. The committee will not generally be involved in individual return to work cases
  • GCC Joint Health & Safety Committee: The purpose of the Joint Health & Safety Committee is to work co-operatively with the employer in identifying and resolving safety and health issues in support of a planned occupational safety and health program and to prevent occupational injuries and diseases in the workplace.
  • GCC Return to Work Committee: The purpose of the Return To Work Committee is to make recommendations/provide input on modified duties that could be made available to members during the return to work process. The committee will not generally be involved in individual return to work cases

There are also a number of other potential vacancies as well since not all committees have enough candidates as of yet to fill the number of positions that are available.  All Local 4304 members with any potential interest in serving on a union committee should take a look at the nominations tracker, and the descriptions of the committees, to see if they have an interest in serving on one or more of them.  Also, if you know of another member who you think would be a good candidate for a committee position consider encouraging them to run!

Yours in solidarity,

Warren Schnurr
Recording Secretary
Unifor Local 4304

Posted in: Elections

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New Website Accounts – Update

To all Local 4304 members,

First of all, I would like to thank all members for their patience as the new website accounts have been rolled out.  The process has been a monumental undertaking and has taken MUCH longer than I had anticipated, but the actual process has gone fairly smoothly otherwise.  I must also give a special thanks to Crystal Switzer, Cheryl Rooymans, and Jason Herman from the new Election Committee for contacting hundreds of members this week to get and verify email addresses so we can get every single member registered on the union website once and for all.  I must also give thanks to my wife, Carol, for helping me with entering data for several hundred members on the website and for sending the mailing list confirmation emails which saved many hours of time.

With the exception of six members, everyone who has provided an email address should have now had their new union website account information sent to them.  The remaining six members who provided an email address will need to have their email address reverified since there’s likely a typo somewhere that needs to be corrected.  All remaining members who have not provided an email address will have union website account information sent to their Regional email address (for Local 4304 members at Grand River Transit) over the next 24-48 hours.  Any of those members may contact me at any time to have their regional email address switched to a personal email address if they wish, so if you hear of a member who has not received their account information, it may have been sent to their Regional email address…please have them contact me as soon as possible at webmaster@unifor4304.org.

I would ask that everyone please make an effort to log in to their new website account at some point BEFORE election day (Wednesday, May 19th) to ensure your access is working and to change the temporary password sent to you to something more suitable for you.  If you want to vote online on election day, waiting until then to sort out any website login issues is NOT a good idea, both the Election Committee and I will be extremely busy that day.

Finally, don’t forget that anyone wishing to receive regular email notifications, such as this one, from the union must click the email confirmation link to joining the union mailing list.  If you hear of anyone who has not received this message, or other union emails, please remind them to click the link in that email confirmation message (it may have been delivered to their spam/junk email folder).

Yours in solidarity,

Warren Schnurr
Webmaster
Unifor Local 4304

Posted in: Uncategorised

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We’re Pulling Out The Stops – Let’s ALL Get Online!

To all Local 4304 members,

At this afternoon’s Executive Board Meeting, we discussed the ongoing effort to get as many members as possible onto the union website, not just for the coming election but to ensure every member has an account they can use to access member-only union information as long as they are an active member of Local 4304.  It has been determined that we are going to entirely scrap any necessity for members to register for their own account and simply create an account for every member we can get a valid email address for, this will happen preferably when a member first joins the union.

For all existing members, new accounts will be created using a standardized username format, to do this we need to confirm the email addresses of as many members as possible, preferably all!  An account will be created for every valid email address we receive and a username and temporary ‘randomly generated’ temporary password will be emailed to each of those members.

Next week, on Monday, May 10th and Tuesday, May 11th members of the Election Committee will be reaching out to as many members as possible to ask for a current email address.  It is in your best interest to provide one so we can get your new account set up.  Even if you have previously registered on the website, or have previously had an account created for you by a member of the Executive Board, we will be asking you to confirm your email address to ensure it is current so we can create new accounts with the standardized username format.  When you are contacted please spell out your email address as clearly as possible to avoid any possible typos.

However, you can get ahead of the game, help us save time, and completely avoid any cold call from the Election Committee if you confirm or provide your email address beforehand!  To confirm your email address ahead of time, simply send an email with your name (so I know for sure who is writing) and the email address you want to use for your new union website account to webmaster@unifor4304.orgYou can start doing this immediately!

We are also asking for your assistance in getting the email addresses of other members who are not currently receiving these messages or are not on the Local’s Facebook ‘bulletin board’ or any member you know who may be off on any sort of leave, this message may not reach them otherwise before an attempt is made to contact them next week.  Simply give them a heads-up about being contacted next week, or better yet pass on this message to them so they send in their email address on their own as soon as possible.

Once we have the list of valid emails, new accounts will be activated over the course of the day on Wednesday, May 12th.  This will provide a week to iron out any possible account access issues that crop up before election day on May 19th.

Yours in solidarity,

Warren Schnurr
Webmaster
Unifor Local 4304

 

Posted in: Uncategorised

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uXpress E-Mail Address Correction

To all Local 4304 members,

A quick FYI, that in the previous message sent to all members with the Executive Board candidate list there was a minor typo in the e-mail address to send campaign information to be published in the uXpress newsletter.  The correct email address is uxpress@unifor4304.org.  The deadline for submissions remains this Sunday, April 25, 2021.

My apologies for any confusion this may cause,

Warren Schnurr
Recording Secretary
Unifor Local 4304

Posted in: Elections

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Executive Board Nominations have CLOSED

To all members of Local 4304,

Nominations for the Executive Board for the coming election have now closed.  The best of luck goes out to all the members who have chosen to put their name out there and run for positions on the next Executive Board.  The final list of candidates is as follows:

FOR PRESIDENT – entire Local votes on position

Brendan Burke
Lisa Main
Sue Turner
Heath Abbott

FOR VICE-PRESIDENT – entire Local votes on position

Dwayne Hyde
Donna Keeping
Lema Callender
Trevor Reid

FOR FINANCIAL SECRETARY – entire Local votes on position

Kelly Hearty
Ken Vogelpohl

FOR RECORDING SECRETARY – entire Local votes on position

Karen Koyounian
Angelo Neziri

FOR UNIT CHAIR – GRAND RIVER TRANSIT – only GRT members vote on position

James McAuliffe
Angela Ransome
Lisa Hatherley

FOR UNIT CHAIR – GREAT CANADIAN COACHES – only GCC members vote on position

Wafaa Dineen
Casey Winter

FOR SKILLED TRADES REPRESENTATIVE – only Skilled Trades members vote on position

Vern Sage
Phil Mayberry

FOR TRUSTEES – 3 to be elected, entire Local votes on positions

Kerry Church
Darci Jewell
Tyler Kress
Mark Cosgrove
Lesley Clark

FOR SERGEANT-AT-ARMS – entire Local votes on position

Goran Ristic
Jonathan Warren
Kevin Schingh

In addition, Athol Baker and Donna Reist have been acclaimed to the positions of AWOC Representative and LGBTQ Representative respectively.  They were the only members to run for their positions so elections for those two spots are not required.  Congratulations go out to both Athol and Donna in their new roles on the next Executive Board.

All candidates who are running for Executive Office can have their campaign platforms printed in the coming edition of the uXpress newsletter.  Candidates wishing to be published in the newsletter should send their campaign platform and any other images/graphics to Ken Vogelpohl at uxpress@unifor4034.org by the deadline, this coming Sunday, April 25th, 2021!

Election Day for the next Executive Board is Wednesday, May 19, 2021.

A reminder also that nominations for all steward, delegate, and committee positions in both bargaining units are STILL OPEN until the end of the May General Membership Meeting on Wednesday, May 19th, 2021.  Nominations for stewards, delegates, and committees can be submitted to recordingsecretary@unifor4304.org.  To view the list of nominees and see descriptions of the available positions you can visit the nomination tracker at https://tiny.cc/2021Local4304Nominations.

Yours in solidarity,

Warren Schnurr
Recording Secretary
Unifor Local 4304

Posted in: Elections

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April General Membership Meeting – Wednesday, April 21, 2021

All Local 4304 members,

The next General Membership Meeting is scheduled for this coming Wednesday, April 21, 2021 at 11:00AM and 7:30PM to be held online via Zoom.  A reminder that all members wishing to attend should RSVP to recordingsecretary@unifor4304.org prior to the meeting.  Even if you’re not 100% certain you will be able to attend, but may be able to, you should still consider RSVPing to ensure access to the meeting is provided if you can participate.

The Zoom link to join the meeting is https://zoom.us/j/5680262113.  This link does not change from month to month so save it for future reference and feel free to share it with other Local 4304 members.  All members attending the meeting should join with their first and last names to ensure the Sergeant-At-Arms knows who is being properly admitted.

In addition, nominations for Executive Board positions for the coming general election CLOSE at the end of this meeting!  All nominations for the Executive Board MUST be submitted, AND accepted by the nominated member, before the end of the evening portion of the meeting to be included on the ballot for the Executive Board election on May 19th.  Submit all nominations to recordingsecretary@unifor4304.org.

Yours in solidarity,

Warren Schnurr
Recording Secretary
Unifor Local 4304

Posted in: Elections, Meeting Agenda/Notice, Meeting Notices

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2021 General Election Nominations – UPDATE

To all Local 4304 members,

Once again, a reminder goes out to all members that nominations are OPEN for all Executive Board, Steward and Committee positions for both bargaining units for the coming General Elections. Members may continue to view the nominations for all positions online at: http://tiny.cc/2021Local4304Nominations. This spreadsheet is continually updated as nominations are received and accepted or rejected.

UPDATE: An additional sheet has been added to the nomination tracker called ‘Descriptions’ which is colour-coded to the various nomination sheets and provides useful information on all the various union positions, including descriptions of each position/committee and their duties.  If you have been sitting on the fence about running for a union position, or do not know what some of the committees are or what they’re expected to do, reviewing the description and duties may help you decide what to run for; you may even discover that a passion or hobby you enjoy outside the workplace may be useful on certain committees that you may never have thought of serving on!

Nominations for all Executive Board positions close – NEXT WEEK – at the end of the April General Membership Meeting on Wednesday, April 21, 2021.

Nominations for all Steward and Committee positions close at the end of the May General Membership Meeting on Wednesday, May 19, 2021.

All nominations should continue to be sent to the Recording Secretary at recordingsecretary@unifor4304.org before the close of nominations or may be given orally at the respective General Membership Meeting.  Nominations from members for a member other than themselves must also be accepted by the nominated member to be included on the appropriate ballot.

I would also like to request AGAIN that all members make every effort to share this information among the rest of the membership.  If you are inclined also please post this message in the workplace locations where you are working from or forward this to members who may not yet have registered on the Local 4304 website.  Management-imposed pandemic restrictions on entering the workplace have made it difficult to post the required information as widely as possible since we are not permitted to enter the workplace except for our required work shifts; having the assistance of other members to post this in locations they are already working out of would be greatly appreciated!!

Yours in solidarity,

Warren Schnurr
Recording Secretary
Unifor Local 4304

Posted in: Elections

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2021 General Election Nominations

To all Local 4304 members,

Another reminder goes out to all members that nominations are OPEN for all Executive Board, Steward and Committee positions for both bargaining units for the coming General Elections.  Members may also now view the nominations for all positions online at: http://tiny.cc/2021Local4304NominationsThis spreadsheet is continually updated as nominations are received and accepted or rejected.

Nominations for all Executive Board positions close at the end of the April General Membership Meeting on Wednesday, April 21, 2021.

Nominations for all Steward and Committee positions close at the end of the May General Membership Meeting on Wednesday, May 19, 2021.

All nominations should be sent to the Recording Secretary at recordingsecretary@unifor4304.org before the close of nominations or may be given orally at the respective General Membership Meeting.  Nominations from members for a member other than themselves must also be accepted by the nominated member to be included on the appropriate ballot.

I would also like to request that all members make every effort to share this information among the rest of the membership.  If you are inclined also feel free to post this message in the workplace locations where you are working from or forward this to members who may not yet have registered on the Local 4304 website.  Management-imposed pandemic restrictions on entering the workplace have made it difficult to post the required information as widely as possible since we are not permitted to enter the workplace except for our required work shifts; having the assistance of other members to post this in locations they are already working out of would be greatly appreciated!!

Yours in solidarity,

Warren Schnurr
Recording Secretary
Unifor Local 4304

Posted in: Elections

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Website Navigation Menu Display Issues

To all Local 4304 members,

As we approach the Local 4304 General Elections we’re working to ensure all the web-base systems (union website, online voting service, etc.) are working correctly, especially since we are still not certain if GRT management will allow any in-person voting in our workplaces due to the pandemic.  The Simply Voting system and it’s integration with the Unifor Local 4304 Website is working but we have recently discovered a minor issue that is not allowing the main website navigation menu to display correctly on mobile devices, but ONLY if you’re viewing the website in ‘portrait’ mode (if you’re holding your phone vertically).

While I work to try and correct this issue (success is not guaranteed), and get the menu to display correctly on mobile devices, a VERY easy workaround is available to everyone by simply turning your mobile device 90 degrees/sideways to ‘landscape’ mode, this should automatically switch the website display on your device to the same as you see on any desktop computer with the full navigation menu visible.

Yours in solidarity,

Warren Schnurr
Webmaster
Unifor Local 4304

Posted in: Uncategorised

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Union Website Login Issues

To all Local 4304 members,

It has come to my attention that there have been some login issues this week affecting most (or all) registered members.  While investigating this I discovered that the issue also affected the Webmaster account access (although I have an alternative login method available to access the website).  The issue affecting logins has now been resolved and all members should be able to access the members area once again.  If you have any further issues logging in please let me know at webmaster@unifor4304.org.

Yours in solidarity,

Warren Schnurr
Webmaster
Unifor Local 4304

Posted in: Uncategorised

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