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Stewards Training. Making a Difference in Your Workplace. Welcome Aboard & Introduction. WELCOME! OPCMIA Vision & Goals of the Steward Program. Goals-Objectives-Expectations. Goals Objectives Expectations Course Critique. Goals – Objectives – Expectations.

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Stewards training
Stewards Training

Making a Difference in Your Workplace

Welcome aboard introduction
Welcome Aboard & Introduction


OPCMIA Vision & Goals of the Steward Program

Goals objectives expectations

  • Goals

  • Objectives

  • Expectations

  • Course Critique

Goals objectives expectations1
Goals – Objectives – Expectations

  • Better understanding of Steward’s duties and


  • Increase knowledge of our Local’s hierarchy

    and their duties

  • Better understanding of our CBA

    and Benefit packages

Goals objectives expectations2
Goals – Objectives – Expectations

  • Better understanding of the OPCMIA Code of Conduct

  • Learn about Our Rich History

  • How to handle Grievance/Discipline cases

Goals objectives expectations3
Goals – Objectives – Expectations

  • What Strike sanctions/Dual Gates mean to you

  • It’s not just a Men’s-only club!

  • Traditions & Reputations

  • Apprenticeship Issues

Union structure
Union Structure

  • Membership

    • YOU are the ultimate authority and responsible for the health and survival of our Local.

    • YOU maintain our Local’s Constitution by your VOTE!

    • YOU set policy by your VOTE!

Union structure1
Union Structure

  • How?

    • By electing competent individuals to office.

    • By maintaining oversight on Local expenditures.

    • By supporting Local’s goals/objectives.

    • By training apprentices our craft – the right way.

    • By keeping your own skills/certifications current


Union structure2
Union Structure

  • Elected Positions

    • Business Manager/Financial Secretary

    • President

    • Vice President

    • Recording Secretary

    • Sergeant-At-Arms (2)

    • Labor Trustees (2)

    • Local Executive Board (11)

Union structure3
Union Structure

Business Manager/Financial Secretary

  • Duties

    • Supervise and direct all Business Agents.

    • Keep a correct account of the financial standing of all members.

    • Receive and account for all money received or disbursed by the local union.

    • Pay International Working Dues.

    • Submit annual Department of Labor reports.

Union structure4
Union Structure

Business Agents

  • Duties

    • Positions are appointed by the Business Manager

    • Reports to the Business Manager

    • Protects our trade jurisdiction

    • Compels employers to observe and respect the Collective Bargaining Agreement

    • Adjust all grievances

    • Promotes and foster employment for members

    • Serves as delegates

Union structure5
Union Structure


  • Duties

    • Presides at all meetings of this Local

    • Shall be a delegate for union business

    • Shall serve as a Labor Trustee

    • Shall serve on the Executive Board

Union structure6
Union Structure

Vice President

  • Duties

    • Shall in the absence of the President perform all duties pertaining to the office of President and shall be a delegate for union business.

Union structure7
Union Structure

Recording Secretary

  • Duties

    • Keeps a correct record of each meeting’s proceedings.

    • Attest with the President all orders on the Financial Secretary and record the same in the local’s book of records together with the minutes of the meeting.

Union structure8
Union Structure


  • Duties

    • Ensures only Members-In-Good-Standing are permitted to attend meetings.

    • Maintains order and discipline during monthly Union meetings.

Union structure9
Union Structure

Labor Trustee

  • Fiduciary Duties – Someone who is entrusted with the management of property with the power to act on behalf of and for the benefit of another.


  • Act as Fiduciaries in operating and maintaining a viable Health & Welfare, Pension, and Training Trust Funds.

Union structure10
Union Structure

Executive Board

  • Meet monthly and take whatever action is necessary to comply with directives of the International Association.

  • Act as trial committee to hear all disputes, charges and grievances referred to them.

  • Act as Membership Committee.

Union structure11
Union Structure

Executive Board

  • Act as Rules Committee acting on all proposed changes/additions to local Constitution, By-Laws and Standing Rules.

  • Be responsible for monitoring the financial soundness of the Local

  • Policy reviewers/makers.

Union structure12
Union Structure

Volunteer Committees

  • Election

  • Negotiations

  • Rules

  • Membership

  • Political Action

  • Health & Welfare Coalition

  • Apprentice/Journey Worker Training

Union structure13
Union Structure


  • How is policy set?

  • Who can attend Local meetings?

  • How do you get on a Board?

  • How do you get on a Committee?

  • Why is it important for members to

    attend Board meetings?

Code of conduct1

  • Introduction/Purpose

    • Stimulate our members pride in

      craftsmanship & customer


Code of conduct2

  • Introduction/Purpose

    • Stimulate our members pride in

      craftsmanship & customer


    • Foster membership pride.

Code of conduct3

  • Introduction/Purpose

    • Stimulate our members pride in

      craftsmanship & customer


    • Foster membership pride.

    • Full support of the Local at all levels.

Code of conduct4

  • Introduction/Purpose

    • Stimulate our members pride in

      craftsmanship & customer


    • Foster membership pride.

    • Full support of the Local at all levels.

    • Three-strike policy.

Code of conduct5

  • Responsibilities under the Code

    • Both Union and Contractor have


Code of conduct6

  • Local Union Responsibilities

    • BM/BA’s shall communicate the

      Code and ensure members:

      • Apply knowledge, skills, and experience diligently on the job

      • Upgrade skills on regular basis

      • Share knowledge of the trade

      • Arrive on-time fit for work

Code of conduct7

  • Contractor’s Responsibilities

    • Address ineffective superintendents,

      general foremen & foremen

    • Proper job layout to minimize downtime

    • Ensure proper storage of tools

    • Man the job site properly

    • Provide leadership/training skills for

      jobsite leaders

Code of conduct8

  • Contractor’s Responsibilities

    • Ensure sufficient quantities of tools &

      materials on site

    • Take responsibility for mistakes created

      by management

    • Eliminate unsafe working conditions

    • Report Code of Conduct violations to


Code of conduct9

  • Dispute Resolution Mechanism

    • Both parties have obligations

      respecting the resolution of disputes

      • If unable to resolve the problem

        pursue remedy under the

        collective bargaining agreement

Opcmia history1
OPCMIA History

  • OPCMIA members are the proud carriers of a tradition that predates the Pharaohs pyramids. As early as man was building shelter for himself, there was plastering – first with mud or clay and later with a lime mixture much like that used today.

Opcmia history2
OPCMIA History

  • As society grew, bridges, canals, dams, reservoirs, roads and many other engineering feats would be impossible without the skills of OPCMIA cement masons. Together with plasterers and other tradesmen, they have played a key role in shaping the world that surrounds us.

Opcmia history3
OPCMIA History

  • In 1501, England’s Henry VII granted the plasterers a charter to organize a guild with the central purpose of maintaining quality standards for craftsmanship and materials. They could inspect and levy fines for unsatisfactory work.

Opcmia history4
OPCMIA History

  • The craftsmanship standards of the European artisans were brought to America by immigrant plasterers of the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries before the United States was founded.

Opcmia history5
OPCMIA History

  • As their numbers increased in the New World, the plasterers began to organize into groups. These groups were generally organized by nationality. For example, New York had a local union for English plasterers, one for Irish plasterers, and one for Italian plasterers.

Opcmia history6
OPCMIA History

  • As the 1800’s opened, the main function of American locals was to ensure quality of craftsmanship. Each local sought to guarantee that the plasterers in its jurisdiction were properly trained and standards of the craft were upheld.

Opcmia history7
OPCMIA History

  • Thanks to the inventions of the steamboat and train, America was becoming more mobile as it moved in a westerly direction. This mobility caused problems in scope and jurisdiction.

Opcmia history8
OPCMIA History

  • For example, it was common for a plasterer who belonged to one local to accept work in another area. This usually resulted in the worker being required to pay dues to two locals–his home union and the local which had jurisdiction over his temporary workplace.

Opcmia history9
OPCMIA History

  • Another example, apprentices would run away from their programs before completion and would present themselves to employers or other locals as full-fledged journeymen.

Opcmia history10
OPCMIA History

  • While there was a great deal of cooperation among locals, all too often such deceits were effective, thereby undermining the quality of the craft and weakening the locals.

Opcmia history11
OPCMIA History

  • Fire destroyed most records of the union’s early history, it is believed that the problems faced by the locals brought them together just before the Civil War in a group known as the National Plasterer’s Union. Before the group could prove itself, it was overwhelmed by the war.

Opcmia history12
OPCMIA History

  • In 1864, the organization was revitalized with a purpose to establish a traveling card system, and to institute apprentice training and regulations on a standard basis.

Opcmia history13
OPCMIA History

  • They also were to acquaint local unions with the names of unworthy members who had to be disciplined or otherwise penalized as well as the names of incompetent applicants for membership.

Opcmia history14
OPCMIA History

  • In early 1882, the Cincinnati local went on strike for higher wages and achieved its demands. During the 16-week walkout, Cincinnati requested financial aid from other plasterers’ locals. Various local leaders responded generously to the request.

Opcmia history15
OPCMIA History

  • In the process of uniting behind their brothers in Cincinnati, discussions of reviving their national group led to a meeting in St. Louis in September 1882. This meeting led to the rebirth of the national organization named Operative Plasterers National Union.

Opcmia history16
OPCMIA History

  • Nearly a year later, the union’s second annual convention led to the concept of the 8-hour workday, and encouraged local unions to do everything in their power to “honorably avoid” unnecessary strikes.

Opcmia history17
OPCMIA History

  • At the 1887 convention, the constitution was amended to include Canadian affiliation and the name was officially changed to Operative Plasterers’ International Union (OPIU). By 1898, the 8-hour day was established and recognition of the Saturday as half-holiday.

Opcmia history18
OPCMIA History

  • In 1908 the OPIU affiliated with the American Federation of Labor as part of the newly formed Building Trades Department.

Opcmia history19
OPCMIA History

  • In 1914, due to the growing numbers of cement workers, our name was officially changed to Operative Plasterers’ and Cement Finishers’ International Association.

Opcmia history20
OPCMIA History

  • In 1915, an agreement was reached with the United Brotherhood of Cement Workers which allowed Finishers of that union to be admitted to the OPCFIA.

Opcmia history21
OPCMIA History

  • The Great Depression of the 1930’s dealt a severe blow to all construction trades as unemployment soared. With an ever increasing federal government role in members’ affairs, the union opened a Washington office in the late 1930’s.

Opcmia history22
OPCMIA History

  • America went to war in 1941 and members of the OPCFIA served their country by completing defense projects well ahead of schedule and by volunteering for often hazardous duty in the Navy’s Construction Battalions or “Seabees.”

Opcmia history23
OPCMIA History

  • As WW II came to a close, thousands of men returned anxious to get into an industry converting to civilian production. Construction boomed, but in the eyes of experienced craftsmen, too many corners were being cut in the rush to build.

Opcmia history24
OPCMIA History

  • Responding to the quality issue, the union established the National Foundation for Lathing and Plastering in 1945 to stem the movement toward inferior materials. This Foundation spread the word that plaster is a superior material for which there is no quality substitute.

Opcmia history25
OPCMIA History

  • As the economy began to build up steam, the demand accelerated of Cement Finishers skills. Highways, bridges, hospitals, and schools were needed. Our Cement Finishers did more than just finish cement.

Opcmia history26
OPCMIA History

  • Because of the various job tasks Cement Finishers performed, in 1951, the union changed its name to the Operative Plasterers’ and Cement Mason’s International Association.

Opcmia history27
OPCMIA History

  • In pursuit of excellence, the OPCMIA joined with the Contracting Plasterers’ International Association and the Associated General Contractors to establish the National Apprentice Training Standards.

Opcmia history28
OPCMIA History

  • In 1960, in order to preserve and expand on programs for its members affected by the federal government rules and regulations, the OPCMIA moved its headquarters from Cleveland to Washington D.C.

Opcmia history29
OPCMIA History

  • This move allow our International leaders to support reforms such as the Civil Rights Act of 1964, setting the nation down the road to true equality for every citizen regardless of race.

Opcmia history30
OPCMIA History

  • The union joined with other building trades unions in an effort to increase minority employment through apprenticeship; opening the doors to construction sites across the nation to young blacks and Hispanics.

Opcmia history31
OPCMIA History

  • Today the OPCMIA continues to play a decisive role and work diligently on behalf of it members. The principles upon which we were founded upon will continue to be its strength in the new millennium.

The roles of a steward
The Roles of a Steward

Who would you go to if you had a problem at work?The answer should be:

Your Steward!!

The roles of a steward1
The Roles of a Steward

  • A Leader

  • A Contract Enforcer

  • A Communicator

  • A Representative

The roles of a steward2
The Roles of a Steward

  • A Leader

    • Understands the diversity of the union’s membership.

      • Cultural

      • Racial

      • Gender

      • Sexual orientation

      • Age differences

The roles of a steward3
The Roles of a Steward

  • A Leader

    • Must have CREDITABILITY (“worthy of belief or trust”) with:

      • Union members

      • Co-workers

      • Supervisors

The roles of a steward4
The Roles of a Steward

  • A Leader

    • Must be Able to listen problems, concerns, and issues of members.

    • Must be Able to motivate members to take action on work-place concerns and problems.

    • Must Be honest with members, co-workers and supervisors

The roles of a steward5
The Roles of a Steward

  • A Leader

    • Must Be reliable. If you don’t know the answer, say “I don’t know” – then get the information and get back to the person ASAP.

    • Must Be knowledgeable about the contract, work rules and policies, co-workers in your area, and issues affecting the workers.

The roles of a steward6
The Roles of a Steward

  • A Leader

    • Must Be supportive to your co-workers concerns.

    • Must Be committed to the labor movement and the goals of the OPCMIA.

The roles of a steward7
The Roles of a Steward

  • A Contract Enforcer

    • The contract we negotiate with our employers is what separates union workers from non-union workers.

    • Our contract gives us certain guarantees. Among them are:

The roles of a steward8
The Roles of a Steward

  • Jurisdictional Scope

  • Strike/Lockouts Language

  • Grievance and Arbitration


  • Scheduling of Shifts

  • Wages

The roles of a steward9
The Roles of a Steward

  • Lunches/Breaks

  • Health & Safety Issues

  • Trust Fund Payments

  • Recognized Holidays

  • Drug Policy

The roles of a steward10
The Roles of a Steward

  • A Communicator

The roles of a steward11
The Roles of a Steward

  • What the Steward should know and teach

    • Workplace Issues & How They Affect Employees

    • The Contract

    • Work Rules

    • Union Structure

    • Union Meetings

    • Union Direction and Goals

Contract education
Contract Education

  • Plasterers –

  • Cement Masons –

Dual gates
Dual Gates –

  • The Basic Rule

    • The basic rule concerning dual gates is simple: A union with a lawful dispute with an employer (the “primary employer”) has the right to picket any gate used by the employees or suppliers or representatives of the primary employer; but its picketing of any other gate is an illegal secondary boycott.

Dual gates1
Dual Gates

  • The Critical Elements

    • Under this basic rule, the critical legal elements to establish dual gates are:

      • The employees, suppliers, and representatives of the primary employer must use only the gate designated for them (the “primary gate”).

      • The picketing union must be clearly informed that the primary employers employees, suppliers, and representatives are using only the primary gate.

Dual gates2
Dual Gates

  • The Remedies

    • If those two things are done, the union’s picketing any gate other than the primary gate will be an illegal secondary boycott.

    • A federal district court injunction secured through the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and the union will be liable for any damages caused to any person by such picketing.

Dual gates3
Dual Gates

  • The Reason for the Rule

    • Although unions have the right to picket employers with whom they have a lawsuit dispute, they do not have the right to enmesh employees of other separate employers (“Neutrals’) in their dispute. Other contractors and other subcontractors are separate employers even though they are working on the same construction site (their “common situs”).

Dual gates4
Dual Gates

  • The Reason for the Rule

    • When more than one separate employer works on a common site, the union must confine its picketing (and any other activity) to the primary employer.

Dual gates5
Dual Gates

  • The Practical Rule

    • Experience in the use of dual gates has taught us that the best practical rule is to confine neutral persons to the neutral gate. It is strongly recommended that the following separate gates be established:

Dual gates6
Dual Gates

  • The Practical Rule

    • Gate A: For the use of employees, suppliers, representatives, and visitors of all contractors other than the employer(s) being picketed (the “primary employer(s)”).

    • Gate B: For the use of employers, suppliers, representatives, and visitors of the employers(s) being picketed (primary employer(s)”.

Dual gates7
Dual Gates

  • The Contaminated Gate

    • If any employee or supplier or representative of the primary (picketed) contractor uses the neutral gate, the gate is “contaminated”. It is no longer neutral. The union can picket there.

    • However, the neutral gate can be re-established by, again, notifying the union and effectively enforcing the dual gate system.

Dual gates8
Dual Gates

  • Other Points

    • Neutral subcontractors at any tier of a primary employer (such as sub-contractors) are separate employers and can use the neutral gate if they are neutral.

Dual gates9
Dual Gates

  • Other Points

    • Since suppliers of the primary employer must use the picketed gate, it is sometimes useful to review the agreements to permit their use of the neutral gate. (Example: If a concrete-placing subcontractor is picketed and his original subcontract included supplying concrete, the general contractor might take back the supply of concrete and which would allow concrete trucks to use the neutral gate without contaminating it.)

Dual gates10
Dual Gates

  • Other Points

    • Any action by any union representative or other person acting on behalf of the union, which attempts to induce neutral employees not to work, is also an illegal secondary boycott and subject to the same remedies. For example, any of the following is illegal:

Dual gates11
Dual Gates

  • Other Points

    1. Fining or threatening fines of neutral employees if they work.

    2. Telling them not to work.

    3. Telling them “the whole job is picketed”.

    4. Telling them “good union members don’t work on jobs that have any pickets on them”.

Dual gates12
Dual Gates

  • Other Points

    5. Telling them the picket is sanctioned by the Building Trades Council.

    6. Pointing out to them a “picket line” clause in a labor contract that may give them the right to decline to work.

    7. Picketing at any primary gate without the picket sign clearly identifying the primary employer.

    8. Passing out pamphlets that try to induce neutral employees not to work.

Dual gates13
Dual Gates

  • Other Points

    • A union unlawfully pickets at a neutral gate if its agents place themselves at the gate even though they carry no picket signs.

    • A union’s picket at a project must be confined to only those times when employees or representatives of the primary employer are present on the project.

Dual gates14
Dual Gates

  • A good union member is extremely careful when confronted WHERE A PICKET LINE IS ESTABLISHED on the job where he is working.

Dual gates15
Dual Gates


  • He READS the PICKET SIGN as he leaves.

  • He DOES NOT hang around near the job.

  • He knows that ONCE A PICKET LINE IS ESTABLISHED, His Business Agents and other union officials are legally gagged and handcuffed from giving advice pertaining to THAT JOB.

  • He does NOT ALLOW HIMSELF to be drawn into conversation with ANYONE at the job site.

Dual gates16
Dual Gates


  • He has the right NOT to work behind ANY Picket Line.

  • He has the right to decide for himself whether to walk off a job being picketed.

  • He understands that his trade may be under attack next.

  • He knows that a two gate system means a PICKET LINE and he has the RIGHT NOT TO WORK, no matter how many gates the employer sets up.

Grievance handling
Grievance Handling

  • Objectives

    • What is a grievance?

    • What is a complaint?

    • What if its not a grievance?

    • What about problems between members?

Grievance handling1
Grievance Handling

  • Grievance procedure serves five purposes.

    • Protects workers’ rights on the job.

    • Establishes a mechanism for enforcing the contract.

    • Provides for orderly and fair settlement of disputes.

    • Maintains healthful, safe and agreeable working conditions, and

    • Gives the worker the support of the whole union when he/she has a dispute with management.

Grievance handling2
Grievance Handling

  • Five areas provide grounds for grievances:

    • The Contract

    • State and Federal Laws

    • Company rules and regulations

    • Well-established (Past) practices

    • Workers’ rights

Grievance handling3
Grievance Handling

  • The Contract

    • Any time the employer violates a specific provision in the contract, their action constitutes a grievance.

Grievance handling4
Grievance Handling

  • Federal & State Law

    • Protect workers from discrimination and unfair treatment on-the-job.

      • Union may handle the grievance either by contacting the appropriate government agency or by using the grievance process to seek compliance.

Grievance handling5
Grievance Handling

  • Company Rules & Regulations

    • Generate grievances in two ways.

      • First, if management disregards its own rules or applies them unequally, harming one or more workers, there is grounds for a grievance.

Grievance handling6
Grievance Handling

  • Company Rules & Regulations

    • Second, a grievance can arise if a company rule is unreasonable or unreasonably vague. A rule that says “proper dress must be worn at all times” may be unreasonably vague unless the company provides guidelines as to what is “proper.”

Grievance handling7
Grievance Handling

  • Well-established (Past) Practices

    • Can only be changed by mutual consent. Discontinuing or changing a well-established (past) practice without input from the union may result in a grievance.

Grievance handling8
Grievance Handling

  • Workers Rights

    • If an action of management violates basic fair treatment of a worker, that worker may have a grievance even if the contract does not say anything about the subject. Discrimination and workers’ rights cover a broad range of incidents and practices. However, discrimination is very difficult to prove.

Grievance handling9
Grievance Handling

  • 5-Step Approach

    • Identification

    • Investigation

    • Documentation

    • Preparation

    • Presentation

Grievance handling10
Grievance Handling

  • Step One – Identification

  • You may learn about an issue from

    • Your own experiences

    • A co-worker reports it

    • A manager or supervisor announces it

    • New policy or procedure

    • Rumor mill

Grievance handling11
Grievance Handling

  • Did management violate any of the following?

    • The Contract

    • A work rule or regulation

    • A policy or procedure

    • Any Federal, State, County or Municipal Law

    • Any health and safety regulation

    • Past practice

Grievance handling12
Grievance Handling

  • Questions you might ask

    • What happened?

    • What is the impact?

    • What was violated? Policy? Contract? Law?

    • Did management’s action constitute unfair or disparate treatment of an employee or group of employees?

    • Did management engage in discrimination or harassment?

    • Did management take disciplinary action against an employee or group of employees?

Grievance handling13
Grievance Handling

  • Step Two – Investigation

    • Talk to People! Ask the 5 W’s!

Grievance handling14
Grievance Handling

  • Step Two

    • If investigation leads you to believe there is validity to the grievance – contact a Business Agent ASAP!

Grievance handling15
Grievance Handling

  • Business Agents Complete Investigation

    • Was anything put in writing? Get copies!

    • Were there any witnesses? Interview them!

    • Why was this done? Ask the source.

    • Take notes, take photos.

Grievance handling16
Grievance Handling

  • Step Three – Documentation

    • Business Agents –

      • Document on OPMCIA Grievance Fact Sheet

      • Submit Written Information Requests, if necessary

Grievance handling17
Grievance Handling

  • Written Information Requests May Include:

Grievance handling18
Grievance Handling

  • Step Four – Preparation

    • Business Agents will:

      • Review all evidence; fill in gaps.

      • Determine the importance and relevance of each fact and piece of information.

      • Distinguish between allegations and opinions.

      • Research the local’s grievance file.

Grievance handling19
Grievance Handling

  • Step Four – Preparation

    • Business Agents will:

      • Discuss the grievance with other Agents/Business Manager.

      • Write the grievance.

      • Prepare the grievance for the meeting with management.

      • Anticipate management arguments and questions; know how to respond.

Grievance handling20
Grievance Handling

  • Step Five – Presentation

    • Business Agents will present case to Management

Grievance handling21
Grievance Handling

  • Grievance Procedure Time Limits

    • Business Agents will present case to Management

      • There are Time limits to file the grievance at the first step.

      • Time limits for management to hear the case.

      • Time limits for the union to appeal to the next step.

      • You must follow the steps in the contract.

Grievance handling22
Grievance Handling

  • Grievance Procedure Time Limits

    • Business Agents will present case to Management

      • You must use the form provided.

      • You must act quickly.

      • Grievance is denied if late.

      • Each Contract sets time frames.

Grievance handling23
Grievance Handling

  • Grievance Procedure Arbitration

     PRO Grievance is heard by a third party.

     CON Usually a long period of time passes before the case is heard and decided. It is not a quick process.

Grievance handling24
Grievance Handling

  • Grievance Procedure Arbitration

     PRO Decision is no longer made by someone in management.

     CON Lower steps in the process tend to become a “going-through-the- motions” formality where little effort is made to resolve the problem

Grievance handling25
Grievance Handling

  • Grievance Procedure Arbitration

     PRO Decision is final and binding (if this is called for in the contract) and both parties have to adhere to the decision.

     CON There are more compromise solutions, which may mean that justice is compromised.

Grievance handling26
Grievance Handling

  • Grievance Procedure Arbitration

     PRO Decision can establish a precedent so the union doesn’t have to file grievances repeatedly on the same issue.

     CON Arbitrators usually come from a professional background (e.g., college professor), which may create a bias in management’s favor.

Grievance handling27
Grievance Handling

  • Grievance Procedure Arbitration

     PRO By appealing grievances to arbitration, the union can gain respect from management by showing it will fight hard to defend employee’ rights.

     CON It costs money to take a case to arbitration. In addition to other costs, arbitrators charge a fee for their services. In most contracts, the union splits those costs with the employer.

Grievance handling28
Grievance Handling

  • Types of Grievances

    • Individual: This is when a management violation of the contract affects only one employee.

Grievance handling29
Grievance Handling

  • Types of Grievances

    • Group: A management violation of the contract affects more than one person.

Grievance handling30
Grievance Handling

  • Types of Grievances

    • Union: When a contract violation may affect the union as an institution.

Grievance handling31
Grievance Handling

  • What to do if it’s a Gripe and not a Grievance

    • Inform the worker of your conclusion.

    • Provide the employee with the opportunity to explain why he/she thinks a grievance should be filed.

    • Attempt to work with the employee and look at ways to resolve the problem.

    • Work with the employee to develop an action plan to solve the problem.

Disciplinary cases
Disciplinary Cases

  • Discipline is a formal penalty imposed by management.

  • It can include (if contract permits):

    • Verbal counseling.

    • Written reprimands

    • Forced transfers

    • Termination

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Disciplinary Cases

  • Management usually cites one of two reasons for taking disciplinary action.

    • It believes the employee is guilty of misconduct – that is, not following legitimate management orders, rules, or policies; or

    • It believes the employee is failing to perform job functions to the standards of the workplace.

    • General theory of discipline – should not punitive but corrective in nature.

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Disciplinary Cases

  • As a Steward, you must know the procedure for appealing a discipline case.

  • Usually found in company policies.

  • Management has the burden of proof in discipline cases.

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Disciplinary Cases

  • Just Cause

    • The basic underlying principle in discipline cases is that management must have “just cause” for imposing the disciplinary action.

    • Seven Tests of Just Cause developed by Arbitrator Carroll Daugherty in a 1966 case. Management must be able to answer “yes” to the following seven questions.

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Disciplinary Cases

  • Seven Tests of Just Cause

    • Was the employee adequately warned of the probable consequences of his/her conduct?

    • Was the employer’s rule or order reasonably related to the efficient and safe operation of the job function?

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Disciplinary Cases

  • Seven Tests of Just Cause

    • Did management investigate before administering the discipline?

    • Was management’s investigation fair and objective?

    • Did the investigation produce substantial evidence or proof that the employee was guilty of the offense?

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Disciplinary Cases

  • Seven Tests of Just Cause

    • Has the employer applied its rules, orders, and penalties evenly and without discrimination?

    • Was the amount of discipline reasonably related to the seriousness of the offense and the employee’s past service and record? (Did the “punishment” fit the crime?)

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Disciplinary Cases

  • Seven Tests of Just Cause

    • A “no” answer to one or more of the questions indicates management’s action was arbitrary, capricious, and/or discriminatory in one or more respects. The union can argue that management did not have just cause to take the disciplinary action.

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Disciplinary Cases

  • Progressive Discipline

    • The intent of progressive discipline is to provide the employee the opportunity to improve performance or correct unacceptable behavior.

    • This means that for the first offense in a given subject (Attendance, for example) for subsequent offenses on the same subject the discipline will be progressively more severe (e.g., short suspension, a longer suspension, termination).

    • Major exceptions might include: Theft, drug/alcohol use, physical violence.

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Disciplinary Cases

  • Obey Now, Grieve Later

    • General rule – Workers are expected to follow management’s instructions and directives.

    • If worker believes the instruction to be unfair or a violation of the contract, he/she can file a grievance at a later time.

    • Arbitrators customarily hold that failure to follow management’s directions can lead to employee charged and disciplined for insubordination.

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Disciplinary Cases

  • Obey Now, Grieve Later

    • Two recognized exceptions to the “obey now, grieve later” principle. Employees may refuse a supervisor’s order when they believe the following would either:

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Disciplinary Cases

  • Obey Now, Grieve Later

    • Result in doing something illegal

    • Put themselves in “imminent danger” of their health and safety.

    • If management takes disciplinary action after such a refusal, the employee must prove that his/her belief about the unsafe condition was justified.

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Disciplinary Cases

  • Insubordination

    • Insubordination is refusing or failing to carry out a direct order. To claim that a worker was insubordinate, management must (1) issue a direct order, and (2) make the worker aware of the consequences of not following the order.

Health welfare
Health & Welfare

  • HMO’s

  • PPO’s

Sexual harassment
Sexual Harassment –

Sexual Harassment

– You Make The Call

Apprenticeship –

  • Qualifications

    • Must be 18+ years of age

    • Must have a High School Diploma or equivalent (GED)

    • Must possess a valid drivers’ license at time of selection

    • Have a Social Security Card

    • Pass Drug Test

      • Job Corps Graduates Go To Top of List


  • Testing Process

    • No Experience – Take Written Examination

    • With Experience – Take Skills Test


  • Written Examination

    • Math Test

    • Mechanical Test

    • Verbal Test

    • Oral Interview

      • Possible 400 points

      • No Pass/Fail thresholds

      • Final score determines place on waiting list


  • Skills Testing - Plasterer

    • Layout

    • EIFS

    • Hard Wall

    • Putty Coat

    • Three-Coat

    • Sand Finish and Textured

    • Level V Finish

    • Rock Carving

    • Fireproofing


  • Skills Testing – Cement Mason

    • Obtaining Grade/Layout

    • Rodding

    • Tamping

    • Floating

    • Jointing/Edging

    • Hand and Machine Troweling

    • Chipping/Grinding

    • Patching (Sand, Sack & Patch, Skim)

    • Steps/Curb & Gutter


  • Skills Testing

    • Dependant upon skill level evaluated, applicant is rated:

      • Journey Worker

        • Turned over to Business Agents

      • 80% - 70% - 65% - 50% Apprentice

        • Placed on Waiting List according to Rating and Date of Application


  • Classes

    • For 50% no experience students:

      • Complete Initial 2-weeks training prior to dispatching

    • For 65%-70% skilled students:

      • Integrated into existing classes

    • Return to classes every 3 months for one-week periods until completion of 5000/7200 OJL & 480/640 classroom hours


  • Plasterer Pay Increases

    • From 50% to 65%:

      • Complete required classes, accumulate 1000 OJL hours

    • From 65% to 70%:

      • Complete required classes, accumulate 2500 OJL hours

    • From 70% to 80%:

      • Complete required classes, accumulate 3500 OJL hours


  • Plasterer Pay Increases

    • From 80% to 90%:

      • Complete required classes, accumulate 4500 OJL hours

    • From 90% to Journey Worker:

      • Complete required classes (480 hours), accumulate 5000 OJL hours


  • Cement Mason Pay Increases

    • From 60% to 65%:

      • Complete required classes, accumulate 900 OJL hours

    • From 65% to 70%:

      • Complete required classes, accumulate 1800 OJL hours

    • From 70% to 80%:

      • Complete required classes, accumulate 3600 OJL hours


  • Cement Mason Pay Increases

    • From 80% to 90%:

      • Complete required classes, accumulate 5400 OJL hours

    • From 90% to Journey Worker:

      • Complete required classes (640 hours), accumulate 7200 OJL hours


  • Certification Classes

    • Basic First Aid

    • Adult CPR

    • OSHA 10 & OSHA 30

    • Scaffold User

    • Scissor/Boom Lift

    • Respirator Fit


  • Challenges

    • Irregular class attendance

    • Late submission of required reports

    • Pigeon-holed into one segment of trade

    • Ratios not followed by contractors

    • Outgrowing facilities

    • Language


  • On-the-Horizon

    • Teaching credentials for Instructors

    • Facility change

    • Foreman Training

    • Fireproofing Certifications

    • Implementation of OPCMIA Standardized Curriculum

    • ACI/AWCI Certifications

Overview of training
Overview of Training

  • Was this training useful?

  • Did the PowerPoint help or detract from the training?

  • Since we are trying new ways of presenting material PLEASE fill out the evaluation forms fully. Let us know what works for you!

  • And Most of all…..

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Overview of Training

Thank you for taking the time to learn more about the union, your rights, and how to protect yourself and your coworkers.