The people have spoken, and C group is the Winner!

Almost everyone reached C as the group that fit their aspirations of what a Day-Off group should look like.

We had to have an Integration Workshop at the end of the last Workshop to get all parties to reach Concensus, it was essentially representatives from tables which chose D and an equal number of representatives from parties that chose C forming a table of 8, like we did in the Workshops, and they gave their reasons why they picked what they did, and using those? reasons why they? chose what they did they tried to convince the other side to convert to their religion, if you know what I mean, that simplifies it quite a bit but gives the general idea.????? This resulted in the other parties getting to see the issue from the others point of view, which eventually resulted in all parties agreeing that C group was the best considering all the information at their disposal tight now.
So now we look forward to the next step, which is the Mock Sign-up.

Well we finally have a Forum for proper discussions.

If you are interested in taking part in some discussions in the new day-off system, or what ever you like, register on the forum side and start discussing, its a work in progress so please bear with me as I stumble my way through this new adventure:?

I will also try to have a scanner feed up sometime this week or weekend, I think I have the kinks worked out, as soon as I do you’ll be the next to know.:)

Day-Off Selection Workshop Feb 21st

The only downside to the whole day was at the end when we couldn’t reach concensus on which day-off group would move forward, the clear majority chose “C”, with some going for “D” possible reasons were for the more choices it allowed compared to others , more choices was seen on the + side of some tables boards, the allowance of reduced hours for some drivers a big plus for those who liked it as another available choice for them.

The reduced hours have been a very contentious issue as most hear part time and just say no, many people are so against it they won’t listen that many properties use it without problems and that there are people who would actually like doing the job on a part time basis.

Some of these same people who claim reduced work weeks, or part time, are just a foot in the door for the City to run rampant with it, they conveniently seem to forget a lot of the same things were claimed with the introduction of RBO’s, and none of the sky is falling forecasts have come to pass, they co-exist with us quite nicely allowing some people to get charter service that they otherwise would not be able to afford. As always, any efforts to increase the number of reduced hour/part time would have to be negotiated. And for those complaining about long spread times and awkward shifts, reduced hour/part time could help alleviate that to a point. Just as being paid for our spread times would help to reduce them by creating an incentive for the city to reduce them, but we older drivers know how willing the city is to pay us for our spread times, flogging a dead horse comes to mind.

But I digress, so for whatever reason people are choosing “D”,? and this is my own personal opinion, for all intents and purposes? the? “D” side will never get the “C” side to vote for the “D” proposal. So to get this process moving forward we need consensus on ONE day-off scenario and only ONE, so if we can get everyone to agree we can move forward to the next step. As C and D are so similar, it seems a shame to hold up the entire proceedings for such a minor difference.

The Pilot was a success, now the real work begins.

The pilot was run on Wednesday, and I was surprised that all tables reached consensus that one day-off group out of the four available was the best over all choice.

Now if the Workshops on the 21st and the 28th reach the same conclusion, we will for the first time in many decades have a viable and potentially workable alternative to our current Day-Off system, the one that has the much maligned letter groups with 7 day stretches, one weekend off a month with single days off scattered here and there, number groups are worse in my opinion with hidden days off and only one full weekend every 6 weeks. That and the long days with large spreads very nearly pushed us into a strike last contract negotiations, a surprise strike vote that took the negotiating teams by surprise. They didn’t see the wave of discontent being fueled by a? membership that was sick of having no life outside of work, sick of giving up friendships because they took a job that precluded any social life outside of transit. Yes, ruined marriages and lost friendships, severed social connections with church and school and virtually any social activity that requires you to be off on the weekends or to be somewhere by early evening during the week, family life suffered with divorce rates higher than any other occupation, the main complaint echoed over and over was the antiquated day-off system conjured up from the turn of the century when workers were treated like property instead of people. IIRC we are the only property in Canada, possibly North America to still have seven day stretches, thats how far behind we are, were catching up in other areas but we could remain behind in this if we don’t accept a change in day-off systems. As mentioned many other issues that were raised have been addressed, but this was the big one and we now have a chance to fix it.

So please remember that this will be our one and only kick at the cat on this matter, over a million dollars has been spent on bringing to fruition the promise of a chance to change our day-off system. We now have the chance to achieve change here and we need to grab it and run with it, some may not notice any improvements or changes to their personal situation, particularly? if they have some level of seniority, and if that is the case please consider the people behind you in seniority, we have a chance to make the job better for many other people , never before have we had this chance so lets make the most of it and make it count, if not for us then for them.

I will post as many documents as I can get and convert them to pdf so they will be available to all, so whether you attended the Workshops or not you will be informed, as we will all be voting on this and I would like everyone to vote without fear or worry that the selected day-off scenario will effect them in a negative manner.

The selection process has been designed to be as transparent and bias free as possible, so that whatever is chosen is chosen for the right reasons, no pushing or bullying, no coercion or fabrication or manipulation of the information. Just the facts and the honest desire to help provide the tools to make an informed decision.

Thank you for reading this and see you on Sunday.

Bob Sawatsky #207