Every so often, but not often enough, employers will give employees bonuses to acknowledge business results. In other instances it might be to address exceptional circumstances such as the COVID pandemic. Last week GSU received notice that Nutrien that will be giving employees a one-time award of $3,000 to frontline employees in recognition of the Company’s very good financial results.
Payment of the $3,000 award will be made to all regular employees, including GSU members, provided they were employed as of March 31, 2022 and continue to be employed on December 9, 2022. Unfortunately, the award does not extend to temporary or seasonal employees.
“GSU does not stand in the way of employer generosity or recognition efforts,” says GSU general secretary Hugh Wagner. “We do our best to bargain solid and above-average benefits, wages and working conditions and if an employer wants to go above and beyond GSU has no objection nor restriction.”
GSU had previously urged Nutrien to take steps to recognize the rising cost of living even though the collective agreement is not open for renewal. In replying senior management did not make any specific commitments. Nonetheless, actions speak louder than words.
“A number of GSU’s collective agreements explicitly acknowledge the ability of the employer to implement employee retention and incentive plans,” Wagner said. “However, I’ve seen it happen where an employer will say to GSU members that they would give their employees a bonus, but falsely claim the union won’t allow it.”
“When all is said and done, I believe it is important to give credit where credit is due and in this instance Nutrien management is doing a good thing. Hats off to them,” Wagner said.