Vacation Request Language

A reminder Brothers & Sisters;

NEW language in the collective agreement states that annual vacation requests with eligibility based on seniority, must be submitted by March 15th, 2015. Approvals will be posted by the company no later than April 1st, 2015.

Vacation requests submitted after March 15th, 2015 will be approved on a first come first serve basis with a response to be provided by the company within two weeks of the request.

If you are having any trouble with your vacation request. Contact a shop steward.

In Solidarity!

Solidarity Forever Brothers & Sisters in Calgary LU 6673

The issues we have been facing for some time now have been challenging for all our members to say the least, the adversities we have faced and continue to face makes me reflect on the lessons I learned when I played hockey as a youth. I recall it like it was yesterday when our team would be winning games and everything was going great, our morale was high, solidarity among my team mates was strong and everything seemed to work in our favor, life was good when we were winning. But when things didn’t go our way and nothing seemed to go right and everything seemed hopeless, the coach would always say to us in the locker room, “ We need to get back to the basics, keep it simple and don’t get to fancy, work together and do your job!”

This advice is a good one and is still used today, when the opposing team throws everything they have at you and tries to shake you off your game mentally and physically it can affect your team’s morale, solidarity and ultimately affect your performance. No question it’s easy to be part of a winning team when everything is going great, but during times when the chips are down and you’re losing. Well this is the time when the true character of any team and as a person is put to the test.

During those times is when we need to make choices, we can kneel and bow our heads as individuals and accept defeat, or we can stand up and fight back together as Steelworkers by continuing to apply relentless offense to anything that may jeopardize our way of life and our objective of Good Jobs, Strong Union. All the while never forgetting to defend and protect the goals we have already achieved.

I ask for all our members to look at ourselves and see that we are all brothers and sisters of our great union the United Steelworkers. Even though we all come from different walks of life and different parts of the globe, we all have one universal thing in common. We all as people aspire for a healthy and prosperous future for ourselves, our children and for our families. We come to work today to financially support our way of life and to secure our future, but let us never forget. We have the privilege as a union of being able to leave behind a bright future and legacy for the next generation of Steelworkers and their families that will follow behind us, and I believe that’s worth preserving and fighting for.

We have a great membership at USW Local 6673, we are battle hardened and strong. Let’s get back to basics and do what we do best by producing the best pipe and tubing in the world.

Solidarity Forever

Bryan Ross
United Steelworkers
Local 6673

Health Spending Account Deadline

As you may or may not be aware the original bargained monies of $375 for the new Health spending account expire on December 31, 2013. The Company released the following memo today explaining the HSA and outlining the plan.

Employees who are actively at work and eligible for benefits on March 31, 2012, would have received $375 in their Health Spending Account.  Under Income Tax guidelines Health Spending credits must be used on eligible expenses by the end of the following year in which they are granted.  This means that the initial $375 must be used prior to December 31, 2013.  If it is not used any outstanding amount will be forfeited from your account.  Attached is a copy of the original memo introducing the program.

 Eligible expenses are defined under the Income Tax Act and can be utilized for yourself and your eligible dependents. These are reviewed by CRA on a regular basis and are subject to change.  Attached is a summary from the CRA website showing what currently eligible expenses are.  You can also visit the website at and type in eligible Health Spending expenses to get the list. 

 You may claim through the Health Spending Account by completing a medical claim form or submitting a claim online. Please review the user guide to web claims that is attached, you will need to contact Standard Life to set up a user name and password, if this is your first time submitting online.  

If you have questions on your Health Spending Account balance you will need to contact Standard Life.  The number is 1-800-499-4415.  You will need to know your certificate number (Evraz ID# with 3 zeros at the end) and your policy number (15037).

As well please read these documents.

Eligible HSA ExpensesUser Guide Web claim

VIP Room – Claims Submissions Direct Deposit and Health Wellness

Standard Life Medical Claim FormStandard Life Medical Claim Form

Job Evaluation Pilot Project

The job evaluation committee has met 3 times and has evalutated  eight of the jobs off the list agreed to at bargaining. The system we are now using is one that the union committee came up with and has simplified the process of evaluating a job.

We have went from using 12 factors to 6 and are not constrained by the rules of Cooperative Wage Study. The committe is working well and actually accomplishing a lot which didn’t really happen that much when Cws was used.

Of the jobs evaluated 5 received increases.  Caster Helper increased from JC 10 to JC 12, Strand Operator increased  from JC 22 to JC 24, Ladle Controller increased from JC 16 to JC 18,  Oiler/Greaser increased from JC 8 to JC 11 and EAF Helper increased from JC 8 to JC 10.

Going forward the Company seems to like the system we came up with and I believe we will evaluate all the jobs we have with the new system so we will be back to having all jobs that we lost through bargaining over the years.

Reported by Steve Machuk

Ratification Meeting and Voting Reminder

The Bargaining Committee would like to thank everyone for the great turnout yesterday at the Special Meeting held at the Eagles Club. It was  great to see our solidarity at work!

Everyone should make every effort to cast their ballot tomorrow at lobby/security area of the change room building (Hilton). The voting stations will be open form 5 am to 8 pm.

For those members who were unable to attend the Special Meeting on December 7 there will be a paper copy of the overview of the tentative agreement available at the security desk today and tomorrow during the vote.

Tentative Agreement

The Joint Bargaining Committee (5890 & 6673) and Evraz have reached a tentative agreement.

There will be a information meeting for ratification held on December 7, 2011 at the Eagles Club (1600 Halifax Street) at 7:30 am and 7:30 pm

Tentatively the ratification vote will be held at the plant Security Lobby on Friday December 9, 2011 from 5:00 am to 8:00 pm. This date will be confirmed on Monday December 5, 2011.


Bargaining Update

The Joint 5890/6673 and Union Bargaining Committee have agreed to meet with the Company again in an attempt to negotiate an agreement that can be ratified by our local. As of today the Union and Evraz  are looking for dates that work for both parties. As soon as these dates are finalized they will be posted here. These dates will be soon (within 14 days). In the meantime the Union has agreed not to hold any Special Meetings.

Bargaining Update

Since our last bargaining update, your Bargaining Committee has completed 6 more days of bargaining. We have concentrated on all of the monetary issues.

There was a point during these six days where we were hopeful that a new collective agreement could be reached with fair wages and pension increases.

With the Employers latest Wage and Pension proposal we now know reaching a Collective Agreement today is impossible.

They have over the Term of our agreement; offered 4.25% in wages.

They have over the Term of our agreement; offered a Pension increase of $1 dollar.

The only benefit increase they have offered is to maintain our Weekly Indemnity payment to 70% of Job Class 4 effective August 1, 2011.

They have restored our C.O.L.A CLAUSE. SORT OF! They will pay C.O.L.A as they have in the past but they refuse to roll the COLA into the Collective Bargaining Agreement at the end of its term.

They have refused to provide our retires one half of a cent per hour, to fund the SOAR Chapter

We have tried to reach an agreement that we as your Bargaining Committee could recommend for acceptance. We are not close enough to consider that kind of recommendation.

We are in the process of looking at our options we will be in touch very soon.

In Solidarity

Your Bargaining committee


Bargaining Update


The Joint Bargaining Committees (6673 and 5890) have completed five more days of negotiations with Evraz since the Special Meetings held on October 20. All Non-Monetary issues have been resolved except for two subjects. One joint Article (12.17 transfer to a supervisory position) which address’s time lines and rules for step up or temporary supervisors and Appendix E which address’s Lines of Progression and jobs subject to bumping.


Both parties have agreed to meet again on November 9th and 10th and again the week of November 14 for further negotiations. Both parties have agreed that the intent of the next round of negotiations is to achieve an agreement that 5890 and 6673 members can ratify. We anticipate this process to be complete by November 18. The Bargaining Committee’s have made it clear to Evraz that if we can’t achieve an agreement by November 18 then both locals will be returning to their members and considering their options that were discussed on October 20.



Bargaining Update

The joint 5890 and 6673 Bargaining Committee just completed 3 more days of negotiations with Evraz. There was some progress made in Non-Monetary issues.

During these three days the Bargaining Committee has been working towards a solution and agreement with Evraz on Articles  5.02, 12.17, 14.14 and 14.15. There are still several other important outstanding Non-monetary issues that need to be negotiated to an agreement. All outstanding Office and Technical issues ( Articles 12.02 (a)(ii), 12.09, 12.10 (l) and Appendix A)  have tentative agreements.

Both parties have agreed to meet again next week on November 1st, 2nd and 3rd to continue negotiations.

Special Meeting

The Bargaining Committee would like to thank everyone who attended the Special Meetings on Thursday. It was an uplifting experience to see everyone in our Union come together and support themselves and their Bargaining Committee with the goal of achieving a a fair and equitable contract that ensures all of us and our  families futures.


Bargaining/Mediation Update


As was reported on September 28 mediation between locals 5890/6673 and Evraz was scheduled for October 13. Since that time both parties have been in contact with a mediator assigned by the Alberta labour board.

The mediator has heard both parties and has been approved by the Alberta Labour Relations board to issue a report that both sides are too far apart for the mediation process to produce a settlement.

Special Meeting

Since Mediation is now complete there will be a Special Meeting on October 20 at 7:30 AM, 1:30 PM and 7:30 PM to be held at the Hungarian Club (Mcara and Park Ave). The Bargaining Committee will present a report of both Non-monetary and Monetary issues on the Bargaining Table.

(Please note regular monthly business will be conducted at the 1:30 PM meeting)

Bargaining Dates

The Bargaining Committees for both 6673 and 5890 have proposedthe following dates to Evraz to resume bargaining:

 October 26, 27, 28 and November 1, 2, 3, 9, 10

(As of today these are tentative dates)

Bargaining Update

Your Bargaining Committee and Evraz met again today and yesterday and attempted to settle all outstanding local non-monetary issues. We were partly successful and came to agreement on some sections of articles 12 and 13. There are still several  outstanding important non-monetary issues to our local that have been moved to the main table. These issues will be dealt with when main table bargaining begins again after the mediation process for Local 6673 is completed in Alberta.

In the interim the Company and your Bargaining Commitee have agreed to try to resolve the many outstanding grievances that are scheduled for arbitration. The Grievance Committee will be meeting again over the next few weeks to try and get this work done. As well there is an Office and Technical sub-commitee meeting to resolve some issues.

Thank you for your patience. Remember with SOLIDARITY we will get this process done.

Joint Bargaining Committee update (Non-Monetary and Monetary)

Non-Monetary update

As you know we started local bargaining in May. Non- Monetary bargaining is about improving the language in the agreement as it affects all members every day.  Local issues were discussed by both BargainingCommittees (LU 5890 and 6673 in Regina and Calgary). The next step was main table common (common to both locals) non-monetary bargaining. Both locals began this process roughly 6 weeks ago. Non-Monetary bargaining has gone fairly well. Calgary has settled all their local issues and Regina has several issues outstanding with several days scheduled over the next couple of weeks to work on them.

Although the sessions have been fairly successful there are still outstanding common non-monetary issues in both locals.

Monetary Update

Both locals (5890 and 6673) tabled and exchanged a joint Monetary Package on September 13 with theCompany (We gave the Company our proposals and they gave us theirs). Even though we have exchanged the monetary packages, we have a number of non-monetary issues yet to discuss and as we have said they are important issues.

There are issues in Evraz’s monetary proposals that the Union is concerned with. We are having them reviewed by the Union’s research department before we proceed.

Alberta Mediation

In the meantime to conform to Alberta Labour laws we have adjourned monetary bargaining with the Company and are applying for Mediation in Alberta. The mediation process is mandatory and necessary to keep both locals going in the same direction at the same time. This is what SOLIDARITY is about; we are working together for the greater good of both Locals.

Regular Monthly Meetings

Regular monthly General Membership meetings are scheduled for September 19, in Regina, and September 28, in Calgary. These are normal monthly general membership meetings and very little will be said about bargaining at them. Regular business will be conducted.

Once the mediation process is scheduled and your bargaining committees have a full report from the Unions Research Department in our National Office we will schedule a Special Meeting, to provide all of you,with a detailed update on Local bargaining issues, common non-monetary bargaining issues and common monetary bargaining issues. As soon as the meetings are scheduled we will have posters out with plenty of notice with dates, time and place.


We want to take this time to thank, you the members of United Steelworkers Locals 5890 and6673, for your support, patience and understanding. Our success, so far, is because of your support. To the many who have attended recent meetings and those who will attend future meeting, we thank you.



Bargaining Update and Order Picture

The Bargaining Committee just met for two days with the Company on non-monetary issues. There were two articles settled with improvements (Article 6.04 and Article 8.00). The Company and the Union have moved closer on a few other issues.

After the session was completed the Company informed the Executive Commitee of the order picture in coming months. According to the Company by  mid October welding in spiral will be complete which will affect coil prep, the spiral mills, and yard employment levels. Two weeks after welding is complete the finishing lines should be done finishing the order. This is all expected to cause layoffs.

According to the Company the 2′ mill  should go back to full production (4 shifts)  when the steelmill can provide coils.

According to the Company the 24″ mill will be  unaffected.

Steel side employment levels will depend on new orders of steel to replace the spiral orders (eg. service center orders)

According to the Company (today) the level of cutbacks  will be up to 250 people in tubular. The Steel numbers as of today are uncertain.

We want to remind all members to remember that these types of events have happened in the past when orders  are complete and that this is not just happening during or because we are in bargaining.