Local 1 & 2 (Viterra): Feb. 2 update on 4.5% Increase and Retro Pay

 

Source: GSU bargaining committee update #43 – Feb. 2, 2024

Some members of Local 1 and 2 have been examining their pay stubs and noticing that there are problems with the 4.5% increase they were expecting to receive.

This is happening in various ways.

  • Some members get no increase or retro pay.
  • Some members getting an increase and retro pay on only some of their pay last year.
  • As well as questions about retro pay on overtime and the STIP from last year.
  • And other questions and concerns.

In the union’s Feb. 2, 2024 update to Local 1 and 2 members, GSU general secretary Steve Torgerson says, “I can confirm that the company has advised that they are taking the 4.5% increase, which they say is not based on performance, and using their pay for performance eligibility to decide who gets it. Even though the language in the final offer states, everyone is to get the 4.5% increase if they were an active employee as of December 31, 2023.”

GSU is committed to fighting for its members to receive the entitlements contained in this final offer. In the coming days, GSU and Local 1 and 2 officers will be reviewing all available options.

GSU will be sending Local 1 and 2 members a to complete if they have issues with the 4.5% increase for 2023. 

“Even though some will say this only affects 25% of members in Local 1 and 2, I would disagree. When a company thinks, it can try to withhold a negotiated wage increase it makes me wonder what is the next thing they will try to get away with?” Torgerson says. “This is why this attack on your collective agreement has to be challenged and fought, and I know all members of Local 1 and 2 will stand together through this.”


Members are experiencing problems getting their Retroactive Pay

Tuesday Members’ Memo – Jan. 30, 2024

With the recent vote accepting the company’s final offer at Local 1 and 2, all eyes turned towards finalizing the new collective agreement and when retro pay will be processed and paid to members. With negotiations taking 15 months, the increase of 4.5% effective January 1, 2023 means that a lot of members are looking at substantial retro payments.

All too quickly, Viterra has changed their tune and is now saying that not all employees in the bargaining units will get the 4.5% increase or retro pay for 2023. Members have begun to look at their pay stubs and are not seeing any increase or retroactive payments for the hours of work they put in for 2023.

“I have reached out to Viterra HR to inquire why some members – potentially as many at 80 – did not receive the negotiated increase or any retro for 2023,” said GSU general secretary Steve Torgerson, “I thought it was a simple mistake, but now it appears that Viterra is backing down from their own final offer that members voted on and accepted.”

“It’s a shameful and dirty move if they decide not to follow their own Final Offer.”

GSU and Locals 1 and 2 are waiting for a response from Viterra. If this is not resolved in the manner to which it was negotiated, we will be looking at all options.

 


We’ve confirmed that retro pay will be processed, paid Jan. 31

GSU has confirmed that Viterra will be processing and paying all retroactive payments for 2023 on January 31, 2024. Based on the Company’s Final Offer, all eligible members will receive their 4.5% increases for 2023, retroactive to January 1, 2023. The Final Offer states that eligible members will receive it, and your hire date and what is in your Letter of Offer should determine your eligibility.

Members are asked to do the math and double-check the information and the amount of their pay, and notify their elected delegate or GSU staff representative if there are any questions or problems. Likewise, If you don’t receive any retro pay on January 31, 2024, please reach out to your delegate or staff representative.

GSU is working with Viterra to write the new collective agreements. We expect this should be done within the next few weeks and, when that process is complete, union and company representatives will sign the agreement and that is the date a number of the changes in the agreement will take effect.


Local 1 & 2 (Viterra) members vote to accept Company’s Jan. 4, 2024 offer

Jan. 19, 2024 — On Jan. 19, ballots cast by GSU Local 1 (Operations & Maintenance) and 2 (Viterra Head Office) members over the past two weeks were counted by their elected officers. It was determined that Local 1 and Local 2 members independently voted to accept the company’s January 4, 2024, Final Offer.

Following signatures by union and company officials on the appropriate documentation in the upcoming weeks, this round of bargaining will be concluded. 

Background information is available here


Vote complete, ballots to be counted Jan. 19

Jan. 18, 2024 – 4:00PM — The GSU Local 1 and Local 2 membership vote on the company’s Jan. 4, 2024 *Final Offer* is complete. Throughout the ratification process, members have adhered to work-to-rule guidelines.

Ballots will be counted by elected GSU officers on Jan. 19, 2024 and results will be released to members.

During their Jan. 5 meeting, elected officers from Local 1 and 2 concluded that there was enough difference between the company’s January 4 Final Offer and the company’s previous November 2023 Final Offer that members should have the opportunity to vote on this most recent offer.

Members of Local 1 and 2, if they have not already, are strongly encouraged to subscribe to the bargaining update newsletters using their personal email addresses. This precaution is advised as company addresses may not be accessible in the event of a labour disruption.

 


Local 1 & 2 (Viterra) members to vote on company’s Jan. 4, 2024 Final Offer

JAN. 5, 2024 – 12:45 P.M. – GSU Local 1 and Local 2 will be voting on the company’s Jan. 4, 2024 Final Offer. They will be working to rule during the ratification process.

At their meeting this morning, Local 1 and 2 elected officers decided that the company’s January Final Offer was different enough from the November Final Offer that members should decide on it for themselves. Accordingly, they have decided to take the January Final Offer to members for a vote.

Additional information will be made available to members shortly, so check your email for updates.

 


 

Viterra presents another Final Offer to GSU’s bargaining committees

JAN. 4, 11:00 P.M. – The GSU bargaining committees of Local 1 & 2 (Viterra) met with Viterra representatives on Jan. 3 and 4 with the assistance of the federally-appointed mediator. Late into the evening of Jan. 4, Viterra presented another Final Offer to the bargaining committee.

The company is currently preparing the Final Offer document and it will be presented to the Local 1 Board of Delegates and Local 2 Executive Committee Jan. 5 at 9:30 a.m. Your elected officers will review the offer and decide on next steps regarding ratification and strike action.

Please stay in touch with your elected delegate in the hours to come. They will notify everyone of decisions made at the meeting, and GSU general secretary/bargaining spokesperson Steve Torgerson will send a follow-up email to all members as quickly as possible.

Members of Local 1 and 2, if they have not already, are strongly encouraged to subscribe to the bargaining update newsletters using their personal email addresses. This precaution is advised as company addresses may not be accessible in the event of a labour disruption.

 


 

Local 1 & 2 (Viterra): Notice of strike action served

On Jan. 2, GSU general secretary and chief bargaining spokesperson Steve Torgerson provided Viterra’s Director of Employee and Labour Relations with 72-hours’ notice of intention to initiate strike action as early as Jan. 5 at 2:00 p.m. local time.

“This strike notice underscores the urgency and gravity of the situation,” said Torgerson. “If significant progress is not made during the upcoming negotiations on January 3 and 4, GSU members are prepared to initiate strike action to secure a fair collective agreement.”

Copies of Torgerson’s letters of strike notice are available here:

The bargaining committees of Local 1 & 2 (Viterra) are scheduled to meet Viterra representatives on Jan. 3 and 4 with the assistance of the federally-appointed mediator. While your bargaining committees express cautious optimism and remain committed to securing the best possible collective agreement, it is prudent to stay prepared for any circumstance.

Local 01 - Viterra Ops & Maintenance, Local 02 - Viterra Head Office

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