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Hardie Workers,
Know The Truth!

Choosing a Union to represent you and your co-workers at your workplace is a legally protected right. It is one of the most important decisions you can make for not just you, but also your family and your co-workers.

Don’t be fooled by false narratives and misleading statements - get the facts before you choose.

MYTH #1:

IBEW pension plans are inferior to the CLAC pension plan.

THIS IS FALSE.

The IBEW’s provincial pension plans are just one of our true successes. Our pension plans have allowed our members to retire with dignity for decades. It’s ironic that CLAC is comparing our pensions to the Teachers Plan and CPP, which are considered by pension experts to be among the best in the world.

Where the current CLAC/Hardie agreement has a contribution rate of $3.71/hour for your retirement, the IBEW agreement has an average contribution rate of $9.00/hour for your retirement. In most cases, the IBEW contribution rate is indexed to our base rate, so every raise we get corresponds to an increase in pension contributions.

Due to the sheer size of our pension plans, the IBEW has access to some of the best financial consultants and investment managers to ensure our members retirement contributions are safe and soundly invested. It's also important to be aware that overtime hours worked under the IBEW collective agreement will be contributed at the applicable overtime multiplier whether its time and one half or double time.

MYTH #2:

If the company goes IBEW, current employees will be “bumped” and replaced with existing IBEW Members.

THIS IS FALSE.

In the last few years, when CLAC members that chose the IBEW for their company – Trade Electric, CEC, DSk, Onyx and Mapleview – not one former CLAC member lost their job because they were denied the opportunity to go to the job site, they previously went to under the CLAC agreement. When workers choose to be represented by the IBEW at their workplace, we not only encourage those workers to remain with their company, but the IBEW also works with the company to continue to grow and succeed. You, the worker, are an integral part of Hardie's success. If you choose the IBEW as your union, we want this to continue.

MYTH #3:

I will be forced into an IBEW Local Union that I may not want to be in.

THIS IS FALSE.

If the employees of Hardie decide to join the IBEW, they will have a choice to join the IBEW Local of their choosing and the IBEW will work with the employee to help find the Local that best suits the employee.

MYTH #4:

IBEW Electricians are always out of work.

THIS IS FALSE.

We have heard from many of you that you enjoy the challenging and diverse work you get as a Hardie employee. This is no different to the hundreds of new members and dozens of new companies we have added over the last two years alone. You are an integral part of Hardie's growing success. If you choose the IBEW as your union, we want this to continue. The IBEW has a long track record of working with our new contractors post-certification to not only see that those companies keep their existing workers, but also grow their companies to expand those opportunities to more of our members. Some great examples of former CLAC companies are Trade Electric, CEC, DSK, Onyx and Mapleview. Layoffs are always a possibility in the construction industry. But this issue has been used as a scare tactic with some success by employers and CLAC to intimidate workers about the IBEW.

The truth is that IBEW electricians are laid off no more often than any other workers in our industry. Over 80% of our over 18,000 members in Ontario work for the same company day in and day out, just like you. Unlike CLAC however, if our members do find themselves out of work, we have a fair and transparent referral system to get them back to work in short order. This system has served our membership well and is a key reason why even members working for places not covered by our Principal Agreement (electrical industry) continue to pay their membership dues.

Being an IBEW electrician, you no longer only rely on one contractor; you have the option of working for literally hundreds of contractors in the area at the same wages and benefits with each one.

If you wish to join the growing number of Hardie workers that have decided to choose the IBEW and are ready to sign a card, please contact:

Joe Brogly

IBEW CCO Membership Development

905-259-7859

joe@ibewcco.org

Be rest assured that all card signers' identities and inquiries are confidential, and your anonymity is guaranteed. If you have further questions...

Ask Us Anything!

Send us anonymous questions and we'll answer them personally within a few hours. Come back to this page to see the posted answer to your question!

Here are some already answered questions:

  • In order for the IBEW to become the bargaining agent for Sheridan electricians, the IBEW must file an application for certification with the Ontario Labour Relations Board.
  • In order to file an application for certification, the IBEW must have the support of no less than 40% of the Sheridan employees engaged in electrical construction work on the day it files an application with the OLRB.
  • If the IBEW has the support of 55% or more of the Sheridan employees engaged in electrical construction work on the day it files an application with the OLRB, the IBEW will be automatically certified as the bargaining agent – if the IBEW has more than 40% support but less than 55% support, the OLRB will conduct a vote which usually takes place within 5 work days of the application being filed – if 50% plus 1 of those casting a ballot vote in favour of being represented by the IBEW, then the IBEW will be certified as the bargaining agent;
  • There are other possible process outcomes which depend on a number of factors including the timing of any application and the nature and extent of any intermingling between Sheridan and Hardie. If you are interested in these other possible process outcomes, contact an IBEW representative who will be pleased to discuss the matter further.

The IBEW doesn’t “absorb” companies. The union representation for the workers and the collective agreement they work under changes. The company retains the right to manage – send workers where needed, assign tasks, to hire, layoff etc.

The company, not the union decides which workers have company trucks. This does not change with the IBEW. If the company values their employees and it continues to be beneficial to both parties, why would that change?

IBEW contractors bid and work for the same customers, clients, and General Contractors that CLAC electrical contractors work for. IBEW Contractors have worked for and will continue to work for Maple Reinders as well as all other General Contractors.

Currently IBEW Local 303 Niagara is very close to full employment and are anticipating being at full employment for the foreseeable future with many larger scale projects expected to begin in the coming months. They are also projecting to need dozens of new members to fill the increase in labour requirements of our Contractors.

The current weekly gross wages on average for an IBEW Journeyperson working 37.5 hours a week is $2,117.25. The current weekly gross wages for a Hardie Electric Journeyperson working 40 hours a week within the GTA and Niagara is $1,902.00 and outside of the GTA and Niagara is $1,822.00. The weekly take home amount is certainly higher under the IBEW Agreement even though you’re working less hours.

To see a complete wage schedule for where you work go to https://www.joinibew.ca/wages/

Union dues paid per month are very comparable between the CLAC and the IBEW. However, IBEW union dues are partially tax deductible and provide additional coverage of a death benefit to your estate and provide an extra monthly pension amount for as long as you live, which is in addition to your Local union pension.

The pension contributions that you have earned are yours whether you remain an IBEW member or not.

The Health and Welfare contributions that you have earned are in your name and provide benefit to you and your family. Should you leave the IBEW, contributions on your behalf will cease and your health and welfare benefits will eventually run out once the accumulated amount can no longer cover the cost to stay in benefit.

This would be another case where the CLAC has not been truthful. The IBEW regularly brings in non-union and CLAC apprentices and they never have to restart their apprenticeship.  If you are a registered apprentice that decides to join the IBEW all your accumulated apprenticeship hours are accredited and transferred over, including all the hours that are worked at Sheridan.

Get the facts. Know the truth.

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