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election practices legal or illegal

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T

tar

Guest
THese were questions email to the Canadian Labor Congress but with not response and time is running out.

I will have to bore you with some background first:

I belong to a Toronto film and tv union. Our executive board, business agent, and office staff were dismissed in the later part of last year while investigations of wrong doings were investigated. A CEO was brought in by our mother union CEP. Our CEO has been trying to put our Union back together and at the same time deal with a raids by I.A.T.S.A. These Raids have been found to be illegal action is being taken. The CEO has done some good things for our Union but the following practices seem UNFAIR and maybe ILLEGAL

My questions deal primarily with our upcoming elections The following are practices that I am trying to find out if they are illegal as they seem very suspect to me.

One: nominations were to be in th office by Jan. 31. We were notified that we would have a meet the candidates meeting on Feb. 5. Upon arriving at the Meeting we were told that the deadline was extented until Feb.18th because some positions were not filed or others had difficulity getting there nominations in. We were told that we were really now attending a non meeting? Canidates who were alreally nominated were invited to introduce themselves and speak. The Ceo could not give us a list of who were the other people running.

NOW here the Crux: No one can find out who are the candidates. We will be presented with the nominees on Feb.20th and ask to vote on these that night.

In past years, people were sent the slate and and could mail in there ballots if they could not attend the meeting. Now they must attend the meeting to vote or turn over there proxy to someone. HOW CAN ANYONE TURN IN A PROXY WHEN THE MEMBERS DON'T EVEN KNOW WHO IS RUNNING.
I was told that this was done to get more members at the meeting. But what it does do is restrict the voting priviledges of the member.


One: Why wasn't the extension for nomination given only to those departments who did not have members running for there respective departments? or

Two: If an extension was needed why did we not extended it for just a week, so that the nominees names could have been published.

Three: How can anyone be asked to vote on the same night we receive the slate. This does not allow anyone to seriously consider who is running. I do not know all 900 members of my Union. If knew who was running I could ask others members about them, how they feel about them etc.
We are being asked to vote blindly on our executive board. This vote is one of the most important one a member will will cast.


Previous to this CEO, we all had access to other members phone numbers etc. We have now been told that no one is allowed to the memberships list. Over 100 new members have been admitted to the Union but no one knows who they are. In previous elections we could send out to members our positions, or at least talk to them on the phone.

I am running for officer in this Union and it upsets me that I cannot talk to members about issues etc. before the election. As a member I would like to be able to make an intelligent and thoughtful choice, this seem to be being denied me.

I called the office about the election day and asked if Candidates would be allow to speak at the meeting before the vote was taken. Each candidate will have 2 minutes.

In Conclusion these are my questions; I do not feel any of these practices are right or of benefit to my Union. What can I do to correct them.

Can we be asked to vote for the candidates running for our EXECUTIVE Board on the same day that we are notified who they are?

Can candidates who have given speeches at a meeting declared as a non meeting be denied the right to give speeches when the slated is finally announced, and other nominees be given that right?

Can my union deny me access to the list of other members?


Lastly I resent changes being made in the way our elections are being held based on a CEO changing rules, and his thoughts not based on the memberships agreement, or at least past practices. If it is my Union and the members Union How can this be done by differently without members approval as we currently do not have an executive board. These new procedures seem very Wrong. Please set me straight and tell me what I can do?

PLEASE ANSWER as soon as possible---as this will all happen otherwise in less than 2 weeks.

Sincerely

TAR


Dear President Georgetti,
I have not received any answers to the questions in my previous email and time is running out. Our elections are scheduled for next Sunday Feb. 20th. Since my first inquiry, I have received further information that I find most troubling. Therefore more questions.

I have found out that 2 positions possibly 3 Vice presidencies on our execute board have been eliminate by the CEO and/or our current business agent. These positions represent distinct and separate departments within our local. How can they be eliminated by our trustee without a vote of the membership. Since we currently do not have an executive board, (we are trying to elect one) it is my understanding that this type of major change in our Executive Board is a decision that must wait until an executive is elected, including these 3 major departments. This does leave 2-3 departments without full representation, that they previously had. How can a trustee or business agent change the members of our EXECUTIVE BOARD before one is even elected. They have combined departments, without the support of the membership etc. This frightens me as one of the departments that has been eliminate, was previously represented by a very intellegent and knowledgeble woman. She asked very pointed questions of both the CEO and our business agent at a open Union meeting. Her questions were not answered, and she was informed she was a trouble maker. One could easily read this as a way of eliminating questions that they do not wish to answer, as they were regarding 4 contracts that our Union lost due seemingly to our business agents neglect.

Another point: The refusal to give members the list of the current membership. Since the CEO and our current business agent,( who has been appointed until there is an executive board, not hired by our local)
we are told over 100 new members exist. These people were not swore in at a public meeting. No one knows if they really exist. If they do - many running for an office have had no way of talking to them, on issues etc, or even just to introduce ourselves. --During this trusteeship, certain members served as temporary stewards. I was informed by a member that one of these stewards is running for an office. Another steward is the girlfriend of another nominee. Both of these nominees has just announced their nominations this week. Both of these people have therefore had access to all the new members names and phone numbers and quite possibly been involved with there swearing in etc. It seems unfair that 2 nominees have had access to this information, either directly or indirectly, while all other nominees have been denied this. Why have these two just become nominees this week. Each nominee will be allowed only 2 minutes to speak to the membership on election night. How can any new member based on 2 minutes make an intelligent decision?

This may be off the wall thinking but members have posed this question to me. "Since the CEO,the business agent, the office staff and temporary stewards are the only people the new members have had contact, what is to stop them from being swayed by those allowing them into the Union. 100 votes would certainly be a big plus to having someone elected who would favor them. As our business agent is not secure until he is approved by the to be elected Executive Board many members are questioning the
 


ALawyer

Senior Member
I've no idea about Canadian labor laws, sorry.

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This is intended as general information only and NOT LEGAL ADVICE. You are not my client, and I have no obligation of any kind to you. To retain a lawyer, go to http://AttorneyPages.com
 

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