ATU Local 583 – Monthly Insights – March 2024, Issue #34

Thank Your Transit Worker Day – March 18th

Each year Calgary Transit celebrates Thank Your Driver Day in March. The intent being to bring awareness to the often-difficult job of a Calgary Transit Operator as they work to keep our city moving.

This year, ATU 583 celebrated Thank Your Transit Worker Day (March 18th). We recognize that our hardworking Operators are just one part of a fully functioning system of workers who get Calgarians where they need to be. Many of our Members work behind the scenes and they are worthy of recognition also. Maintenance and Office Members may not always be in public facing positions like our Operators are, but their job can also be challenging and requires just as much care and attention. We are deeply proud of each and every one of our Members and wanted the opportunity to celebrate all of you!

Officers, E-board Members, Stewards and more volunteers were out over the course of several days to distribute giveaway items that included a card sleeve for your phone. The perfect place to put your cards for easy access! It was great to have a chance to see so many Members and to chat and catch up.

We also hosted a series of contests which included the chance to win one of five fully paid book offs, $200 gift cards for the Keg and $100 gift cards for Boston Pizza.

All winners can be found at

There is also a $10 Tim Horton’s gift card for everyone who entered (and was eligible). We are in the process of getting those delivered and anticipate everyone should have theirs by the first week of April, we apologize for the time it has taken to distribute them, we have had to check all entries to ensure they were valid and as you can imagine that has taken a good chunk of time to do. Keep an eye on your email!

Congratulations to all of the winners and a huge thank you once again to all of you that entered.

Backpay Deductions and Union Dues

As you have all no doubt already noticed, there were considerable deductions taken off your recent backpay cheque. Those deductions, such as IT, CPP and EI are required by law to be taken at the source (payroll) Other required deductions include LAPP pension and MEBAC benefit contributions. Similarly, the Employer is required to take Union Dues.

With the exception of union dues, which is the only one we can control to some degree, those monies have all been withheld.

As a small token of appreciate for the memberships support and patience as we negotiated the 2021-2023 Collective Agreement, the Executive Board made a recommendation to wave the dues owed on those backpay earnings.

We are pleased to advise you that the membership overwhelmingly supported this recommendation at the February Regular Membership Meeting.

Thank you to the Board and the Membership for recognizing this well-deserved break.

ATU International Scholarship Winner

We are extremely pleased to announce that one of the winners of the $8000.00 scholarships given away each year by the ATU International is the daughter of one of our very own Member’s.

A big congratulations to Eva Xing Xia, daughter of ATU 583 Member Jack Shaohui Xia!

We are wishing Eva all the best with her education and the future!

We post scholarship opportunities on our website so keep an eye out.

Lost Property and Bee Clean

We have received several complaints from Members who have left items on the bus they were operating or in common workplace spaces and had them turn up in the trash.

As per Article 120.01 All lost articles found in Calgary Transit vehicles, structures or on Calgary Transit property shall be turned in to Calgary Transit Dispatch Offices.

A similar requirement will be in the City contract with Bee Clean.
If you have had an item thrown away or otherwise improperly handled, please note the date, time, location and where you believe the item had been left and email We can look into it from there. Our Member’s property should not be thrown away.

Upcoming Events

We have solidified some dates for ATU Local 583 events taking place later this year. Mark your calendars because we are looking forward to seeing you if you’re able to attend!

Pancake Breakfast:
July 9th at the ATU 583 Office. This event is open to ALL Members in good standing and is free of charge. We will have times listed in a future newsletter. This event will also include door prizes!

Family Picnic: July 21st at Bowness Park. This event is open to ALL Members in good standing and their immediate family. This event is free of charge. We will have times listed in a future newsletter. This event also includes our annual bicycle draw for Member’s children aged 14 and under as well as prizes for oldest Member and youngest Member’s child in attendance!

Retiree’s Banquet – October 5th at Grey Eagle Resort and Casino. This event is open to all retired Members in good standing. Active Members can join a waitlist for tickets that will be open at a later date. We will have times listed in a future newsletter. This event includes draw prizes for retired Members!

As always there will be information put out via our social media, Telegram group and Union posting boards in the workplaces well in advance of these events so you are able to make plans to attend if you would like to.

We hope to see as many of you as possible at as many of these events as possible, it is always wonderful to spend time together outside of work and we enjoy the conversations and amicability such events allow for.


And the final thing we would like to touch on is municipal politics. Not from a public policy perspective but from the perspective of an employer/employee relationship.

As most of you will be aware, we are in the middle of attempting to negotiate a collective agreement with the City for 2024 and beyond.

In November, after much discussion and in-depth review, City Council set the budget for 2025 by a 9-6 vote. This included the property tax rate, which fully funds the wages of City of Calgary employees.

So, not willing to accept the democratic outcome of that vote, Councillor Wong, co-sponsored by councillors Sonya Sharp, Andre Chabot, Dan McLean, Sean Chu and Jennifer Wyness, (that’s 6) introduced a motion to provide a property tax rebate. This included finding 23 million in savings from the Labour relations portfolio.

The single purpose for this caveat was to strip 23 million from what would be the only source of any negotiated wage increases.

How’s that for Bargaining in Good Faith?

However, we will have a very nice hockey arena.

Speaking of negotiations, we have 7 upcoming bargaining dates in April, with the City of Calgary and we will update the Membership as much as possible along the way. Please keep an eye on our Facebook as most of the updates of this nature come in the form of a Facebook Live Monthly Update. You do not need a Facebook account to watch the live but you will need to be logged into participate (comment etc.).

COPE 397 /jw

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