B15 Letter of Understanding

Brothers and Sisters,

After many discussions with the company regarding the B15 [hollywood ] Shift, the Union and Company have come to a resolution.

The Union and company recognize the B15 as a preferable shift. 

The schedule rotates completely in a three week cycle and as such it is agreed that for the B15 and only the B15 schedule, Article 8.09/2/(iii) shall be substituted with the following

In determining the number of hours worked in any 21 day period (B15 only), all regularly scheduled straight time hours plus regularly scheduled hours worked on a Stat holiday will be included. The first eight hours over 120 in the 21-day period will be paid at 1.5 times the employee’s base hourly rate and all additional hours over 128 in the 21-day period will be paid at two times the employee’s base hourly rate.

Either party may withdraw from this agreement by giving 21 days written notice.

Steel 2 Crew Thursday day shift

Brother’s and Sister’s from the Steel Division,

There appears to be some confusion on the companies schedules regarding the Thursday day shift. The Company and Union agreed that the Thursday day shift would be scheduled as a 12 hour shift but the last 4 hours would be the dead shift that the company didn’t intend to work but if they did the company agreed to post as the C.B.A states under article 8.09,

Any employee willing to work on their designated dead shift
will place their name on a list provided for such purpose on
a month to month basis. The month notice never happened. The local would like to remind it’s members of Article 9.01 which states,

The Company shall give notice of overtime as far in advance
as is practical. All overtime work shall be voluntary.

Governments Could Stop Layoffs at Evraz Steel

REGINA, Saskatchewan & VANCOUVER, British Columbia & TORONTO–(BUSINESS WIRE)– National and Western Canada leaders of the United Steelworkers union (USW) say news of pending layoffs at Evraz Steel in Regina is the result of the federal government’s failure to commit to use Canadian products in Canadian infrastructure projects.

“It should not happen that one Canadian company can decide not to use Canadian steel products in its infrastructure projects,” said USW National Director Ken Neumann. “Our government has failed to protect Canadian jobs and does not even have a Canadian-made procurement strategy for public infrastructure projects, let alone private projects that impact our economic future.”

Steelworkers’ jobs at the Regina pipe mill are in jeopardy after it was learned that an order to make 48-inch pipe for energy infrastructure company TC Energy in Northern Alberta has been given to an offshore company.

July C.O.L.A Adjustment

The CPI figure for July was released on August 19, 2020. Per the Collective Agreement, the following calculation will apply:


July 2020 141.4
April 2020 138.7
Difference 2.7
Divide difference by .063 = $0.42


Effective with the first pay period after the release, COLA will be $1.33 per straight-time hour worked, as it was previously $.91

Evraz Business Outlook

Brothers and Sisters,

Earlier this week members of your Executive met with Company Executives to discuss the Evraz Business Outlook for 2021. As mentioned in previous posts, the future doesn’t look promising. Here is a breakdown of how things look for the next few months and into 2021.

STEEL DIVISION– Plan is to stay around the same crewing level as current and up to 3 crews in the Melt Shop around October

TUBULAR DIVISION

24″ mill has a small order that will take that mill into roughly the 3rd week in Sept. After that the order book is empty.

2″ mill will go back up to 1 crew around the time the 24″ runs out and that crewing level is expected to stay the same until June 2021.

Spiral Mill has the TMX order that is expected to weld out late November to early December.

We were very optimistic that another NGTL order was going to take us into the first few months of 2021. Unfortunately Evraz was not awarded that order and currently has no work on the books for 2021. At this time we are unsure which company was awarded that job but regardless if it was a U.S company or Over-Seas company it’s very concerning that a Canadian Infrastructure project will not be using Canadian Material made by Canadian Workers.

What does this mean for our Tubular Members? Well, we have been told that the company intends on keeping roughly 15 members for the 2″ mill. The company’s words were “deep cuts” and we could see that to be over 500 members laid off in December.

This is a very tough and trying time and the company is actively looking for more work but the fact is there is limited projects in Canada and the projects into the U.S, we can’t compete with thanks to the U.S President. We must remain focused on our work and the safety of one and other.

In Solidarity

Q2 profit sharing

Brothers and Sisters,

2nd Quarter Results


Our financial performance for the second quarter of 2020 resulted in profit sharing payment for employees under the Quarterly Bonus Plan. The payout will be $1.21 per eligible hour bonus payment for qualifying employees deposited into your bank account by August 21, 2020.

Our Q2 results benefited from favorable foreign exchange rates related to company financial transactions during the quarter

Safety Boot Reimbursement

Please see below regarding reimbursement of safety boots.

As per Article 14.03, the Company will subsidize the cost of safety boots to a maximum of 75%.
Previously, at the time of purchase, employees were required to pay 25% of the cost of boots when purchasing from Work Authority and Mark’s Work Warehouse with these companies direct billing EVRAZ Regina for the remaining 75%.
Effective immediately, EVRAZ Regina no longer has an account with Mark’s Work Warehouse.
• Employees purchasing boots from Work Authority will continue to pay 25% of the cost of boots at the time of sale, with Work Authority direct billing the Company for the remaining 75%.
• Employees purchasing boots from any other supplier will be required to pay 100% of the cost of boots at the time of sale and submit their receipt to HRCanada.Support@evrazna.com for a 75% reimbursement.

Railway Medical Report

For Steel Yard members,

We received communication from the company regarding the Government of Sask guidelines that require any employee working in  the railway safety position  to meet certain minimum standards of medical fitness (mental and physical). In this context, the Company will sponsor medical examination using company doctor, Dr. Radford, on the company time and the company expense. There will be approximately 40 Steel employees  who will be required to go through this railway medical examinations between now and September 20, 2020. Those employees who want to go through their family physician have this option available to them at their own expense and time.

The Union has requested a meeting to discuss this and the company should not have started moving forward with this without discussion with the Union. We have asked them to cease until we can have a meeting which we hope is within the next week. Our position is simple, you have every right to go to your own physician and the company should be paying for the medical needed. Not in essence forcing you to go see the company contracted physician.

These Government regulations appear to have been in place for some time now so to the company, what was/is the hurry now? Why not do what is right and discuss with the Union prior as we are the sole agent for our members?

It is your right to see your physician at anytime!!

In Solidarity.

GROUP GRIEVANCE FOR JUNE 25 2020

Steel Division:
Anyone who had their shift canceled on June 25 and was asked to report anyway please contact the Union to be added to a group grievance regarding your pay.

As well anyone who had their shift canceled on June 25 but wasn’t paid for the day please contact the Union to be added to a group grievance.

Grievance Meeting Report

Yesterday your grievance committee met with representatives from the company at the 3rd step grievance meeting and responses from the company went as expected. They weren’t moving on anything. Not only were they not prepared to move on anything there was a number of grievances that upper management hadn’t even looked at until that meeting. They also refused to discuss any grievances on early shift relief, cell phones and the call in procedure. The Union has a grievance in on the call in procedure and has been moved to arbitration.

When discussing the shift relief in general, Brad Forster seems to be under some impression that he can remove the Letter of Agreement in the collective agreement. Well Mr. Forster, that is not how agreed to articles such as this are dealt with. If you want it gone, it goes through bargaining. The company also has some new interpretations of language in the collective agreement such as rate retention. For Mr. Forster to tell your President he hopes that bargaining goes smooth, they sure are doing everything in their power for the opposite.

After the grievance meeting was completed Mr. Forster gave a business update. As we all should be aware, things at this time don’t look promising. With that said, for weeks now managers in the steel division have been spreading the rumor that their will be lay-offs even down to 1 crew. A member of the shift committee confronted Mr. Forster on these rumors being spread and he said they were untrue. Well yesterday they were informed there will be upcoming lay-offs in the Steel Division starting in the middle of August down to 2 crews. The company is looking at a new shift to run on 2 crews that would incorporate running a dead shift. This would be a shift with built in overtime on it which seems odd as that was his reasoning for not running the B15 schedule. Puts into question the real reason why he wouldn’t run the B15?

Pat Eisler

Brother’s and Sister’s,

It is with great sadness that I inform you of the passing of our Brother Pat Eisler. Pat was a member of USW 5890 since December 5th, 1989. He had just recently retired 2 weeks ago and was 59 years old.

Pat will be missed by all and our condolences go out to his family.

Rest easy brother.

Upcoming Steel Layoffs

With the upcoming layoffs to take affect at the END OF SHIFT ON JUNE 25TH, if anyone in the Steel Division has been told they are to not report to any shifts prior to their last normally scheduled shift, please contact a shop steward or executive member. We have heard some areas are being told the 25th will be used as part of article 12.13[ 3 day clause]. Under the Sask Employment Act during the notice period, the employee’s pay rate and normal hours of work cannot be cut.

In Solidarity.

Canada Life – Health and Dental Coverage Update

This is the latest information provided to the Union from the Company regarding the issues people are having with their health benefit coverage

As you are aware, an issue was recently brought to our attention that a number of our Active employees were experiencing an unexpected system error with Canada Life (formerly Great-West Life), resulting in their Health and Dental coverage to show as “Terminated” effective June 12, 2020.   As we worked through the cause of the error, it appears it was connected to a number of data transfer files sent shortly after the March 2020 cyber-attack, and unfortunately the impact of the error only came to light this past week. We apologize for any inconveniences this may have caused any of our employees and their families.

We can confirm the following:

  1. Canada Life has corrected employee benefit coverage records in their system to reinstating coverage for all employees affected by the error, while ensuring no break in benefit coverage.
  2. For employees who experienced troubles over the past few days at their Pharmacy, Dental office or other practitioners, and may have had an expense declined in error:
    1. For the employees who  paid for the expense, the receipts can now be re-submitted (via a paper claim submission or by using Canada Life on-line Group-Net App) for adjudication and reimbursement consideration.
    1. For employees whose practitioners held the receipt, they can now resubmit via any direct claims interfaces the practitioners may use in their offices, for adjudication and reimbursement consideration.

We understand the frustration caused by this issue and apologize for any inconvenience experienced by our employees.  The patience and understanding you and our employees have displayed while we worked with the insurer to resolve this issue is truly appreciated. 

We have included the same people who were notified in the original email sent last week, however please feel free to share the information in this email.  For employees who reached out to us, we have replied to them.  If you feel additional communication is appropriate,  we would appreciate suggestions as to methods of communication.

Should there be any outstanding questions or concerns regarding benefit coverage, please contact us at Benefits.pension@evrazna.com

Thank you,

Benefits Department, Canadian Operations

Call in Procedure

Brother’s and Sister’s

In recent weeks the company has been disciplining members for not following the call in procedure, specifically not calling in 2 hours before their shift starts. The Union has a grievance in on the policy being reasonable and are waiting for the date from the arbitrator. There used to be an understanding with this company that calling in 2 hours before your day shift was unreasonable. The new direction it appears, is that the company figures they should have 16 hours of your day and that is reasonable to them. They also figure if you can’t call in 2 hours before that you should still show up for your shift sick. This thought process makes us question how seriously the company takes everyone’s safety especially in the midst of a Pandemic.

The 2 hours notice was to give the company notice to find coverage for absenteeism. We guess now they expect our members to show up sick, infect others and then go home with zero notice? This is the route the HR department is going. Leaving front line managers with no coverage to run a shift, and for what? Do they believe this is building any sort of morale or is this simply HR trying to exert authority over our members? Actions like this make us wonder where the HUMAN factor is in Human Resources??

Canada Life – Health and Dental Coverage

If anyone has had problems with their Health and Dental coverage please see the below communication we received yesterday from the company’s benefits department.

We have heard from a couple of employees about an issue with their health and dental coverage at Canada Life having a benefit end date.  These employees were informed by Canada Life the last day of their EVRAZ health and dental coverage is June 11th.  We are working with Canada Life to determine the cause of the incorrect end dates in their system, and to identify all employees affected by this error so Canada Life’s system can be corrected and all inappropriate termination dates are removed from their system.

Should you have an employee contact you about their Canada Life health and dental coverage being terminated, please let them know we are aware of the issue, the termination of coverage on June 11th is an error, are working to correct the error as quickly as possible, and we apologize for any inconvenience this error might create for them.  Should the employee require additional information or have any questions, please have them leave a message on the Benefit Department’s toll free phone number 1-844-924-7636 or email benefits.pension@evrazna.com. We apologize for any inconvenience the coverage end date error may cause you or our employees.  Coverage for active employees, or those who have been laid off and should have continued coverage beyond June 11th, will be corrected as soon as possible

C.O.L.A Update

The CPI figure for April was released on May 20, 2020. Per the Collective Agreement, the following calculation will apply:

                         April 2020                              138.7

                        January 2020                         140.6

                        Difference                               (-1.9)

                        Divide difference by .063 =   ($0.30)

Effective with the first pay period after the release, COLA will be $.91 per straight-time hour worked, as it was previously $1.21.

CITTnewsRelease: TRIBUNAL INITIATES REVIEW—HOT-ROLLED CARBON STEEL PLATE

Ottawa, Ontario, June 1, 2020—Following a request by the Minister of Finance dated April 30, 2020, the Canadian International Trade Tribunal today initiated a review of its finding of May 20, 2014, in Inquiry No. NQ-2013-005, that the dumping of certain hot-rolled carbon steel plate originating in or exported from the Federative Republic of Brazil, the Kingdom of Denmark, the Republic of Indonesia, the Italian Republic, Japan and the Republic of Korea was threatening to cause injury to the domestic industry.

The Minister also requested that the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) review its decisions taken under subsection 41(1) of Special Import Measures Act in respect of individual exporters with de minimis margins of dumping, i.e. steel plate exported by Hyundai Steel Company. The outcome of the CBSA’s review may require that the Tribunal review its threat of injury finding. The CBSA’s notice regarding the initiation of its review can be found at cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/sima-lmsi/i-e/ad1402-1404/ad1402-1404-nr-eng.html.

On October 14, 2020, the Tribunal will make a decision, including reaffirming its threat of injury finding or replacing it with a negative finding.

The Tribunal is an independent quasi-judicial body that reports to Parliament through the Minister of Finance. It hears cases on dumped and subsidized imports, safeguard complaints, complaints about federal government procurement and appeals of customs and excise tax rulings. When requested by the federal government, the Tribunal also provides advice on other economic, trade and tariff matters.

Steel Dumping Investigations Must Proceed Without Delay: Steelworkers

OTTAWA – The United Steelworkers union (USW) will take an active role in investigations being launched by Canadian authorities into illegal dumping of foreign steel into Canada by several countries.

“Our union will continue to aggressively defend the jobs of steelworkers across Canada who for too long have been harmed by steel imports dumped into our country and sold at unprofitable, below-market prices,” said USW National Director Ken Neumann.

“Over the last two years, after our union won the right to participate in such trade cases, the majority of rulings have gone in our favour, helping to push back against illegal dumping of foreign steel and aluminum products,” Neumann added.

The Canadian International Trade Tribunal (CITT) is launching a preliminary inquiry into the potential damage to Canadian workers and producers of alleged dumping of hot-rolled heavy steel plate and high-strength low-alloy steel plate from Taiwan, Germany, South Korea, Malaysia and Turkey. If the CITT’s inquiry confirms steel dumping by the identified foreign producers, it can impose duties for an initial period of five years.

The CITT decided to launch an inquiry as the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) simultaneously investigates the alleged dumping by the five countries. The investigation followed a dumping complaint by Algoma Steel of Sault Ste. Marie, Ont., where workers are represented by the USW.

“Our members know better than anyone the damage that unfair and predatory trade practices have caused for working families and communities in our country,” said Marty Warren, Ontario Director of the USW, which represents workers at Algoma.

“Too many jobs have been lost due to foreign steel dumping. As we struggle to recover from the economic impact of the pandemic, we will fight back against further threats to our domestic steel industry,” Warren said.

Local union leaders representing Algoma Steel employees are expected to present evidence during the CITT inquiry. Algoma already has announced layoffs due to the market impacts related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Workers and their families are already suffering during this crisis. We can’t allow illegal dumping to threaten more jobs in our community,” said Mike Da Prat, President of USW Local 2251, representing production and maintenance workers at Algoma.

“It will be a disaster for Steelworkers in Sault St. Marie and for workers across Canada if, in addition to the pandemic, our steel industry also is hit with a surge of dumped foreign imports,” said Rebecca McCracken, President of USW Local 2724, representing office, technical and professional staff at Algoma.

Given that Canada may be increasingly targeted by foreign dumping due to contracting global demand, it is critical that the CBSA investigation and the CITT inquiry proceed without delay, Neumann said.

“We know that foreign producers and importers are looking at the Canadian steel market as a destination for dumped steel products like heavy plate,” Neumann said.

“The Government of Canada must ensure that the CBSA continues to do prompt investigations during the pandemic and the CITT must continue to meet its statutory deadlines so that that the Canadian market is protected from unfairly traded goods.”

USW International President Thomas M. Conway said Steelworkers in Canada and the U.S. are leading the battle for fair trade and to preserve manufacturing and middle-class jobs in both countries.

“This fight is fundamental to our economies and to our way of life. Canadian and American Steelworkers can compete with anyone in the world if we’re on a fair playing field. So we are demanding that our governments sanction the bad actors and defend our workers and our domestic industries to ensure they remain on a long-term, sustainable course,” Conway said.