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"I would like to share a couple of things that happened to me as a staff person who works on a 10 month continuing term. Every June and July, I go off the Queen’s payroll. A few years ago I discovered that during one of my leaves I was taken off my Long Term Disability and never put back on it. Thankfully, USW Local 2010 was able to prove that this was a mistake on the part of HR and my LTD was reinstated without any argument. Last year when I went to do my taxes I assumed that I had been contributing to the Steelworkers Humanity Fund and wanted to apply this charitable benefit to my taxes. As it turns out Human Resources had removed that from me as well and never reinstated it. I would urge anyone who takes a leave to look closely at their paystubs."

"I am very grateful for the amount of effort, strength and determination that was used to help me in my circumstance. Having gone to the Union has turned a very negative experience to a pleasant and amicable outcome. I would not have been able to have such a bright conclusion if it hadn't been for the hard work that came from those within the Union. I even gained some friends throughout the process. If you ever have a problem, or experienced something you are not sure of, take my advice and ask questions! You never know answers without asking the questions. It was absolutely worth it for me - and it will be for you!"

"Kelly, I just wanted to thank you and USW for working on my behalf for the grievance. More people should take advantage of what the union can do for them when Queen’s Managers are unfair. Thank you again and thank you to Bri."

"I have called upon my Union, USW 2010, for various reasons: to ask a Collective Agreement question, to assist me with the Return to Work process, to discuss best practices, and most recently to seek guidance when I received an Indefinite Layoff. I feel very fortunate to be part of USW 2010. They are here for me, especially to speak for me when I am too emotional or anxious. It is very comforting to know that you are able to reach out to and be heard, no issue too small or too great. Thank you."

"I was talking with a few colleagues and we discovered that we were not sure how the new legislation Bill 148 affected people who were unionized so I sent a quick email to my USW Steward to ask how the new personal emergency leave days (PEL days) applied to us at Queen’s. The basic answer is that anything put in place by the government applies to all people unionized or not. The real question is which is better – the government legislation or what we have in our collective agreement because the greater benefit would apply.

The new legislation combines sick leave and emergency leave for people who do not have greater benefits under a Collective Agreement.

In our CA under Compassionate Leave 23.04 we are entitled to work out with our manager as much emergency leave as the manger will allow all PAID. So the real answer to the question will depend on the nature of the emergency and the personality of the manager and whether or not we would need to claim what we are entitled to by the government if the manager is being unreasonable.

We have access to sick days and short term disability which far exceed the 10 days provided under the new legislation and therefore our members would not access this part of Bill 148.

Because of our greater right and benefit we do need to provide doctor’s notes when requested by the employer as the prohibition against sick notes is specifically tied to the use of Personal Emergency Leave Days under Bill 148 which as members of USW Local 2010 do not apply to us due to our greater benefit in the CA."