What work is considered as "construction" by the Ontario Labour Relations Act?
We continue to get inquiries from New Electric employees concerned that they wouldn’t be covered by our Principal Agreement because some of the work they do isn’t construction. Hopefully, this update will clarify things.
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When I sign a card electronically can I still meet in person?
Absolutely! You can either call one of our Reps directly, or submit an email from the Contact page.
How Long has the IBEW been around?
The short answer is November 28, 1891. This YouTube link is a six-minute video on our heritage. (click here)
I’m an apprentice. Will my hours count?
Yes. Hours worked with New Electric will count towards your apprenticeship. If you are currently an unregistered apprentice, you will receive a contract of apprenticeship and those hours will be included. In every case our goal is to support your apprenticeship with strong field training and mentorship.
Will my employer know I contacted you?
No. All communications are kept strictly confidential. Your privacy is protected under the law.
Will my employer find out if I sign a union membership card?
No. Only the Ontario Labour Relations Board (OLRB) will view the cards. The cards are required by the OLRB as proof of interest in joining only - they are not legal contracts. The benefits of membership are granted by the OLRB when they are able to confirm that the wishes of the majority of the employees supports becoming IBEW members.
If I join the union, will I have to leave the company I work for?
No. You can stay with the company. Things that will change for the better include wages, benefits, and pension. You’ll also be entitled to union representation on issues— if you choose.
I’ve heard that unions take a lot of money for membership dues. Is that true?
No. Depending on the local union in your area, dues will range between $39.66 - $50.00. Your monthly dues includes several benefits- additional life insurance, an additional pension investment through our international office PLUS, a portion of it is tax deductible. That cost is easily offset by the increase in pay, benefits, insurance, and pension you’ll receive. You can view the breakdown for wages here.
Part of the union dues go to cover administration costs at your local office. The remainder goes to the international office, which provides the pension and accidental death benefit.
If we unionize, does that mean the union rep always speaks for me in the workplace?
No. You may speak with your supervisors at any time, with or without a union official present.
The union is a democracy that includes all members— including you. You vote on who represents your interests in negotiations.
Can the union force us to strike?
Only if you and the other members vote to strike.
Thanks to our joint proposal process, the IBEW hasn’t been on strike since 1990. With this process, locals across Ontario negotiate contracts with employers every three years. You may have heard of our “no strike, no lockout” joint proposal.
Can I choose which Local I wish to be with?
Yes, typically members join the Local in the area where they work or reside, but the choice is yours.