ATU Local 583 – Monthly Insights – January 2023, Issue #22

Happy New Year!

We hope you all had a safe and happy end to 2022 and are looking forward to 2023.

We have a lot we want to accomplish and are excited to continue the work we are able to do for the Membership.

Negotiations Update

We have several dates scheduled with the City for bargaining in the new year.

Currently, information remains similar to what we have previously reported; however, we wanted to help clear up a few things we have been answering quite often on our Telegram group:

1. This will be addressing a rumor going around that the Officers of Local 583 have signed a contract without Membership approval. This is false. The Negotiations Committee is made up of the four Full-time Officers, the two Chief Stewards and can also include reps from areas such as Community Shuttle/Accessible Transit. There is no circumstance where the Negotiating Committee would sign off on a contract without the approval of the Membership.

This approval would come in the form of a vote that had 50% plus 1, in agreement with the memorandum. When we do reach a memorandum, we will post a location and time as to where that vote will take place. ALL Members will have the opportunity to review the memorandum at a special called meeting in advance of voting, as well. We will give plenty of notice so you can attend, should you wish to. These meetings will take place at 10 AM and again at 7:30 PM much like our Regular Membership Meetings that occur monthly.

This is a prime example of something we talked about in our November 2022 Monthly Insights article on the Rumor Mill. We thank the Members who reached out to discuss this (categorically false) rumor with us. Rumors such as this, if left unaddressed, can spread quickly and snowball, so we appreciate the opportunity to give the Members accurate information.

2. Our main concern in bargaining is getting the best deal possible for the Membership. This means that negotiations will take as long as they take. The City would have been happy to sign a contract a year ago, six months ago, three months ago and so on. Any memorandum we could have reached at that time would not have been in the best interest of the Membership.

3. We are aware that several other Unions have signed agreements that have included back pay. We have said it previously and will repeat it now, we do not intend to bring back a memorandum that doesn’t include back pay for our Members.

4. There is a misconception that we are currently “without a contract”. While it’s true that we do not have a revised 2023 contract in place, our previous CBA is bridged, meaning everything in the “current” or “2018-2021” agreement remains the same until we sign a new one. In fact, although not in the CBA, things like the vacation match remain protected until we negotiate something different

The collective bargaining process is very specific to each Local. We have many things in common, but we also have many issues specific to our Local’s work areas. Although we are focused on getting it done, the negotiations process will take as long as it takes, to get the best contract possible. We are not interested in bringing back the cutbacks proposed by The City and we certainly don’t want to leave anything on the table that could benefit our Members.
Our goal is to bargain until such time as we can reach a strong memorandum that we can recommend acceptance on. We appreciate your patience and will update you regularly as we work towards that goal.

If you are interested in joining the aforementioned Official ATU 583 Telegram group, please text Harry Lew at 403 404 4564 with your full name and payroll number (or that you are retired) and he will add you.

Monthly Recap with ATU Local 583

During our 2023-2025 term, the Officers of ATU Local 583 would like to continue to build on the mandate of last term to expand on communications between the Local and the Membership. We intend to do so by hosting monthly “recap” video sessions with the Officers of the Local.

We did this during the height of the pandemic when we were unable to meet in person and posted the videos to our website and Facebook page for Members to view at their leisure. This is the same style and format we will be using this term.

After the Regular Membership Meeting takes place (second Tuesday of each month unless otherwise specified) the Officers will choose a date to “go live” and update Members on the current happenings at Local 583.

These videos will be viewable on our website and Facebook indefinitely much like our newsletters are. Members will be able to send in questions as well, for a Q&A segment.

As we iron out the details, we will post more information.

ATU 583 Insurance Letters

We have recently completed a project to send everyone who has life insurance through ATU Local 583 a letter detailing the information of their policy.

These letters contain your policy number, your ID number, your beneficiary and the amount of your policy.

If you have any questions, concerns, or you did not receive a letter but believe you have a policy, please call Nancy Savage from Prizm Financial, the Agent of Record for ATU Local 583, at 403-802-2458 (direct line) or you can email

CT Hiring & What This Means

Calgary Transit has announced that they intend on hiring 400 employees in the short term and an additional 400 over the remainder of the year.

We hope they are very successful in what sounds like an extremely ambitious target.

Attrition has had a devastating effect on the service levels and of course, the only people that feel that more than the riding public is our members. We now have a transit friendly City Council that has made some real commitments to funding improved service.

Our Members have been going above and beyond for over two years now. Many are exhausted and the system is not sustainable with these tight schedules and long days. The addition of 400 employees would go a long way in easing that burden.

Women’s Uniform Issues

One of the topics discussed at our monthly ATU/Transit Service Delivery meeting was the general fit and quality of women’s uniform items.

We have had numerous reports from Members about the low quality and ill-fit of the uniforms for women, and in discussion with the City, the following is being actioned: Mike Mahar has activated the clothing committee to meet with Vik regarding clothing.

Additionally, we have confirmed that all Members can have small alterations made to their uniforms for better fit/repair rather than waiting for a requisition form. Members can contact Vik Kulkarni or Salim Punjani to get approved paperwork.

Steward Interviews and Appointments

Anyone who has put their name forward to become a Steward for Local 583 prior to our January 5th Executive Board meeting has been sent a letter either appointing them to the position of Job Steward or inviting them to a short interview with the Executive Board.

If you put in a request after January 5th, 2023 that request will go to our February 9th, 2023 meeting for review.

We thank everyone who has expressed interest in representing Members and working with the Executive Board, as well as for your patience while we endeavour to go through everyone’s requests in as timely a manner as we can.

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