I have some concerns with the Feb 18th article regarding the Village of McBride and the CLAC mediation. In this article, I believe that the following quotations from an interview with Mayor Martin can be misleading.
‘Mayor Loranne Martin told the Goat in an interview Sunday that the village has been at the table all along and trying to bargain. She herself is a union shop steward at her other job, and she says she has been through the process many times.
“Its’s the most bizarre bargaining process I’ve ever seen”, Martin says of the negotiation.’
Although I am sure it wasn’t intentional, the phrasing of Mayor Martin’s statements regarding her experience with Union negotiations implies that Mayor Martin has herself been directly involved in the bargaining process.
Having filled the role of union shop steward for 15+ years with the same union as Mayor Martin, I would like to clarify the extent of a shop steward’s experience/responsibilities with Union Negotiations.
1. The shop steward provides feed-back of employee concerns to Union Employees, who collate this information and forward it to the Bargaining Committee.
2. The shop steward distributes and then collects sealed ballots regarding acceptance of negotiation results.
3. The shop steward, under the direction of the Union, assists in coordination of any local strike action if the voting returns a negative result.
These responsibilities are a far cry from involvement in actual Union negotiations.