at the work place, a result of some arbitration decisions dealing with it, I think it has come and found its way. I can assure you that if you take an aggressive view on what those words meant, all that would happen would be you'd have a strike next time around in '97 and those words would be deleted from the collective agreement. The message I am getting from the unions now is - that the words are generally acceptable.
British Columbia is different than elsewhere. That is what you have to recognize, unions are strong here and management wants back all the management rights that they gave away voluntarily over the years. Whether it is contracting out or everything else. And I'm saying - if you want something back, it is slower than if you had never given it away. There is nothing easier to get the troops excited than to say -management's trying to gut your collective agreement by concessions.
2. Tom Wolanski - M.B., Port Alberni
Are we approaching the flexibility issue from the wrong direction. Where we are trying to force flexibility into the work force that has had specific guidelines for years and years, should we be looking at, say, the apprenticeship order. Starting and modifying the apprenticeship program so that the apprentices coming out are given flex training in the apprenticeship field, so when they do enter the work force and start taking over the duties of the regular tradesmen they will come already with flex lines, attitudes and skills needed to achieve the task. I'd like your opinion on that.
You must have been at a couple of meetings I was at with senior management, because what I have said essentially, is that if you tell me the degree to which you have trade flex in the various 27 operations across the province, I've said:
Before you do that, give me the demographics of the work force, tell me their age, tell me how long they've been there, tell me how many of them served as union shop stewards over the years, and I'll tell you - the people who are older and the people
who have served as union representatives - you can lust tick them off.
That is were you are going to have problems with trade flex. Where you are not having the same degree of problems is with the younger people. You can go a little quicker and move it quicker if people are younger and have maybe adapted to change over the years.
L Another point of attack is the apprenticeship program
. That is why I am preaching to employers that your best tool to get trade flexibility is for early retirement, but have them leave with dignity.