ATU 583 Monthly Insights – July 2021 – Issue #5

Summer Heat and Bus Hatches

A hotly contested item every year around this time is the opening of the roof hatches on buses for air flow on warm days.

Calgary Transit has issued a bulletin allowing for Operators to open the back hatch themselves if needed. The front hatches are meant to be open on warm days when you take over your bus – if this is not the case you are asked to call Control so a Supervisor can come open it for you.

In the event that your bus is too hot – regardless of whether hatches are open or not – you can let Control know you need to pull over if you are no longer safe to drive. Inform them you need to cool down, grab a slurpee, iced cap or some water and drink it in the shade until you have cooled down. When you are safe to resume driving let Control know you can continue. This will not become a discipline issue as long as you inform Control, your passengers and keep safety at the forefront.

You can also ask for a change off for a bus with air conditioning but they are not required to provide you with one and it will be heavily dependent on availability; which is why we have made the above suggestions.

Summer has only just started and high temperatures are a sure thing in the next couple months. Stay safe and if you need to cool down in order to carry on safely – please do. If you have any push back, give us a call at the office.

ATU Local 583 Rally for Respect at Work

On Tuesday June 29, 2021 we held a rally at City Hall. It was one of, if not the hottest day of the year so far and it was still well attended with numbers at around 130 registered attendees plus our unregistered allies. Our cap for allowable persons at the rally to align with COVID restrictions was 150 so we are extremely pleased that we neared capacity on such a scorcher of a day.

A huge thank you goes out to all of our active Political Action Committee members and Stewards who were so heavily involved with making this rally happen and getting us to such an integral part in our campaign. For those of you who have been following along – this was the next step in our Are You In campaign. Our efforts are aimed at getting members and their family/friends involved in this coming fall’s municipal elections. With an emphasis on electing candidates that strongly and loudly support public services and the people who provide them. Our committee members were very dedicated in getting signatures from the members, visiting garages and work areas at all different times of day to be sure to get as many people involved as possible. It was a massively successful effort with over 1800 signatures from our members obtained. Those signatures were digitally printed on a banner we unveiled during the rally. It was certainly a big moment for us, after months of hard work to be able to show how many of our members have hopped on board!

A special thank you to Renee and Raj for going the extra mile and playing a massive role in this effort. They did an amazing job leading their teams and helping us get this rally organized.

On the day of we had many special guests, which included Brothers and Sisters: Alex Shevalier of the Calgary and District Labour Council, Gil McGowan of the Alberta Federation of Labour, Brie Nelson of the Calgary Alliance for the Common Good, Darcy Lanovaz, CUPE 38, many leaders of our Civic Labour Coalition and Kelly Davis from ATU Local 569 (our Sister Local in Edmonton). Each of them brought the support of their respective organizations as well as strong advocacy for why voting in this election matters.

Additionally, we invited numerous candidates to our rally so they could talk with our Members and learn about our efforts and the reasons behind them. Nate Pike candidate for Ward 3, DJ Kelly candidate for Ward 4 and Kourtney Branigan candidate for Ward 11 took us up on our offer and we gave them a chance to speak as well.

We livestreamed the entire event on our Facebook page and it has since garnered over 1100 views. That support from those unable to attend is immeasurable so we thank you for watching!

All in all, it was a very hot and very successful rally. We could not be prouder of our Political Action Committee, Stewards and members for showing up. This year’s municipal elections are incredibly integral. We must vote in a City Council and Mayor who believe in the importance of public services.

The Civic Coalition will be putting out a list of vetted and endorsed candidates soon which we will share.

Fall Banquet Update

Our Fall Banquet is currently booked in at the Grey Eagle Resort and Casino for October 2, 2021. We are doing our utmost to nail everything down so we can hold it this year. Our concerns lie with the COVID 19 variants. With the relaxation of all restrictions and the mask bylaw no longer in effect we want to ensure that in the event of an influx of cases and renewed restrictions – that we have enough time to cancel. And, if we are able to hold it, that we are doing everything in our power to ensure everyone’s comfort and safety. Our members’ health is our number one concern.

Of course, we would like nothing better than to gather and celebrate with our retirees. Rest assured that if we are able to hold the banquet, we will get the invitations out in plenty of time for everyone to make their plans.

All newly retired and newly minted 50-year members from 2020 and 2021 will be honoured as VIPs at our next banquet.

We cannot wait to safely see all of you and share a meal together once again.

Coffee with a Candidate

The Calgary Alliance for the Common Good is meeting with as many mayoral candidates as possible before this October’s election. We are closely affiliated with CACG and our EVP Neil McKinnon has been sitting in on most of these mayoral meetings. The purpose of these meetings is to infer which candidates have the best interests of the members at heart and see where each of them stand in terms of their platforms. Organizations affiliated with CACG are then encouraged to do the same with their ward candidates who are running for City Council.

A mayoral debate will be held in conjunction with these efforts put on by the Calgary Alliance on September 30th, 2021 in the evening. The top 4/5 mayoral candidates will be participating. If you would like to listen in or watch this debate you can email Neil at to be added to a distribution list for this event!

Update on the Bike Draws

Last month we discussed putting on a virtual bicycle draw in lieu of our annual Family Picnic. We are extremely pleased to report that our Financial Secretary Treasurer has been moving steadily along in this venture and we now have the bikes in the office (along with safety helmets of course!)

The official rules and entry form can be found at All children 14 and under of members in good standing are eligible!


COPE #397

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