|Thornton Yard to see new Transload Centre: New jobs for Local 4001
|While meeting with the CAW to discuss its business plans on the construction of a new Intermodal and Transload facility in Prince George in conjunction with
the completion and start-up of the first phase of the Port of Prince Rupert expansion project, CN also advised Council 4000 Regional Representative Barry
Kennedy of upcoming changes to its Transload operations in the BC Lower Mainland. These changes will see a new Transload Distribution Centre built at the
Company’s Thornton Yard in Surrey, B.C. CN will create three new positions to staff the new Surrey facility.
CN currently operates a Transload facility in North Vancouver, which they assumed control when they purchased the operations of BC Rail in 2004. There were
9 employees staffed at the facility, former Teamsters Local 31 members who became members of CAW National Council 4000 and Local 4001 following the
merger. Since then, CN has created an additional five positions, which handle transload operations of various commodities, largely steel and forest products.
Based on China’s increasing demand of steel, the North Vancouver Transload Distribution Centre, located off the shore of Burrard Inlet on West 1st Street in
North Vancouver, will see a significant increase in the amount of steel being shipped from this facility.
To handle the increased steel shipments, CN will divert a large portion of the forest products currently being handled in North Vancouver to a new Transload
Distribution Centre that is in the process of being built at CN’s Thornton Yard in Surrey. The new facility is being built near the Thornton Shop complex. The
North Vancouver complex will still handle a smaller and strategic portion of forest products.
CN will create three new positions to staff the new Transload Distribution Centre at Surrey – one position of Lead Hand Operations and two positions of
The North Van operations will not incur any job loss as a result of these changes. The large increase of steel shipments that will be handled at North
Vancouver will offset the majority of forest products that will now be handled in Surrey. The 14 jobs at North Vancouver will be maintained, with the potential of
additional jobs being created in the future based on supply and demand.
The new Surrey operation is also being designed to have the ability to expand in the near future, something the Company advised during our meeting that they
see happening. This will ultimately lead to new additional jobs being created in the future.
As was the case of the 23 new positions being established in Prince George later this year to staff the new Intermodal/Transload Terminal, the Union verified
the proper process in filling these three new jobs at Thornton Yard. Pursuant the Council 4000 collective agreements (Agreement 5.1 and Agreement 5.1
Supplemental), these new positions will be governed by the Supplemental Agreement on the basis they work within the confines of Intermodal/Cargo-Flo
operations and therefore will first be advertised to CAW Intermodal members on the Mountain Region (Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver). Whatever positions
remain unfilled, the Company will then post those positions on a Regional Bulletin to CAW Agreement 5.1 Mountain Region members who hold Reciprocal
Seniority rights to access Intermodal/Cargo-Flo work. The awarding of positions will be done on the basis of seniority and qualifications, and, failing such, on a
suitability and adaptability basis. Pursuant collective agreement provisions, members whose job bids are denied, for whatever reasons, may appeal such
Following this process, any remaining vacant positions, and any subsequent vacancies on existing positions which is created by members bidding and being
awarded these new Transload positions at Surrey, will be filled by new employees hired externally by CN. These new employees will become CAW Local 4001
Mountain Region members.
Training will commence on these new positions in September, and the Company hopes to have operations up and running in Surrey in early October 2007.
CAW Local 4001's CN membership expanding
Since the beginning of 2005 and leading up to this October 2007, CAW Local 4001 will have seen approximately 145 new jobs created (including the 35 new
members who joined us with their jobs from BC Rail in 2005, and, the recent CNTL Owner Operator hires in Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver). This does
not include the approximate 35 new employees that CN has hired for employment in various Mountain Region functions such as Crew Management in
Edmonton; Transportation Reporting Services at Edmonton and Vancouver; Intermodal at Calgary, Edmonton and Vancouver; Locomotive Reliability Centre in
Edmonton and Savage Alberta Railway (SAR) at Grande Cache and Grande Prairie, Alberta. Further hiring is expected at CN and SAR this year. CN is
conducting job fairs at various Mountain Region locations, including Grande Cache, Grande Prairie and Prince George.
We will have more to come on this topic on www.cawcouncil4000.com in the coming weeks.
We are hopeful that we will also see new Mechanics hired in the near future as part of CN’s commitment (Attachment ‘C’) in the recent Memorandum of
Settlement for Agreement 5.1 and the Supplemental Agreement ratified by the membership this past January.
Clarification on Reciprocal Seniority Rights
Reciprocal seniority rights are based on the various dates that the Agreement 5.1 Supplemental Agreement came into existence on each region.
During the 2000/2001 round of collective bargaining between the CAW and CN, the parties negotiated an extension of reciprocal seniority rights by one year
upon each anniversary of the original effective date as outlined in Appendix 2 of the Supplemental Agreement. What this means is, for the Mountain Region,
anyone governed under Collective Agreement 5.1 who has a seniority date of November 20, 2000 or earlier, has reciprocal rights to positions that were
advertised to Intermodal employees that no one bid.
In the event Agreement 5.1 members bid and are awarded a new position within the Intermodal/Cargo-Flo function (the new Prince George Intermodal
Terminal as an example), such members establish and move their Agreement 5.1 seniority over to the Supplemental (Intermodal) Agreement.
From that date forward, they maintain their Agreement 5.1 seniority date; however, their Agreement 5.1 seniority does not extend to positions bulletined under
Agreement 5.1 UNLESS they cannot hold a position within the Supplemental Agreement, or, in cases where permanent Agreement 5.1 jobs remain unfilled
after having been bulletined and which sees the need for the Company to hire new employees to fill them.
If you require any clarification on this mater, please contact your appropriate Local Chairperson (Alberta / BC) or Regional Representative Barry Kennedy.
Related: June 28 - New Prince George Intermodal-Transload Terminal sees new jobs coming for CAW Local 4001