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Dean Review Consultation Questions

Written submission to Dean review

Submission number: DR-95B

Name of organisation making submission: DR-95B International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron Workers, Local 786

Dear Mr. Dean:

I am writing in my capacity as the business manager of the International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron Workers, Local 786 to provide our submissions to the Dean Review. Local 786 is a trade union within the meaning of ss. 1(1) and 126 of the Act and has a total membership of 624 people comprised of 146 apprentices and 478 journeymen. Amongst our journeymen members, a significant number have Certifications of Qualification, Red Seal designations and other interprovincial approvals.

In the interests of brevity, our submissions focus on four key points in relation to the questions posed in the Consultation Guide:

  1. The current SoPs are out of date and don’t accurately reflect the scope of practice for each trade. For example, Iron Workers have skill and expertise in performing complex or dangerous rigging– this kind of rigging involving heavy piping materials and equipment is recognized in a trade agreement with the United Association and was recently upheld by the Board in a jurisdictional  dispute decision (TESC Contracting Company, Tab 1). Yet this kind of work Is not expressly referenced in the SoPs for Iron Worker trades.
  2. Local 786 submits that the SoPs would better reflect the actual scope of practice for each trade if it incorporated the Provincial Training and Curriculum standards for each trade. These training standards are indicative of the actual scope of practice of a trade and would provide insight into the actual work and training of respective trades. Further, SoPs should be defined in a manner that allows for flexible interpretation of the scope of practice for the respective trade.

    As such, we believe that the SoPs require review and amendment in order to serve as accurate points of reference for the College’s objects and functions. This should be accomplished through a comprehensive review of all of the SoPs with periodic scheduled review thereafter. We submit that a formal review process should be put in place to allow a Board of Trade or a Divisional Board to trigger a SoP review by reference to an adjudicative panel on request by the moving party together with the proposed changes and the reasons for the proposed changes with full rights of industry participation.

  3. No new trade classification reviews should be conducted until there is a comprehensive review of the SoP for each trade. Further to the submissions made above regarding the issues with the current SoPs, it is our position that it would be inappropriate to engage in trade classification reviews until the SoPs have been reviewed and updated.
  4. The College ought to give significant weight and deference to OLRB decisions. The Board is an expert tribunal  and as such has specialized expertise with respect to the various labour relations issues in the construction industry. Accordingly, the College ought to use OLRB jurisprudence for the purpose of defining the scope of SoPs, trade classification reviews, and enforcement matters. This will ensure that College decisions are consistent with the orders and determinations of the OLRB.
  5. Statutory amendments ought to be made such that where a work elements falls within the scope of a compulsory trade as well as a voluntary trade, the work may be performed by members of the voluntary trade. Local 786 has concerns that under the current classification of trades as compulsory or voluntary, there will be attempts by other trade unions to use/seek compulsory status for work jurisdiction purposes. This is concerning as the rights of our members to earn a living could be interfered with for reasons completely unrelated to the public interest. In our view, this concern would be considerably diminished if the statutory language was amended to expressly permit voluntary trades to perform work elements also falling within compulsory trade. This will deter parties from seeking compulsory status for the sole purpose of claiming an exclusive legal right to perform work that has traditionally been Iron Worker work.

We would be pleased to provide any additional information or documents that you might find of assistance in this review process and look forward to hearing from your office regarding in-person consultations.

Sincerely,

Armand Charbonneau
Business Manager
International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron Workers, Local 786