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Mark Dimondstein
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Below is a response by former APWU President William Burrus to a question posed online by a union member. Other questions cover a wide range of topics, from contract enforcement to union governance.

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Question:

I am wondering if your answer from February 2007 still holds true as to whether employees on the Overtime Desired List should work penalty overtime before casuals work overtime. It is a big problem in our plant. The casuals are getting more hours than most of the regulars on the OTDL. Management claims this issue is being arbitrated at the moment.

Chris, Cape Girardeau (MO) Area Local

President Burrus:

I stand by my previous response regarding management’s obligation to schedule employees on the OTDL for penalty overtime prior to assigning overtime to casuals. The 2006-2010 Collective Bargaining Agreement requires that “Full-time regular clerk craft employees on the Overtime Desired List (ODL) shall be given priority scheduling for overtime work over casuals doing overtime work.” (See the Memorandum of Understanding re: Supplemental Workforce; Conversion of Clerk Craft PTF’s, in the APWU Collective Bargaining Agreement - PDF.)

Management has taken the position that this language does not apply when full-time employees will receive penalty pay. The union has initiated a grievance at the national level, and it will be heard within the next two months. We are confident that we will prevail and that payments will be made to employees on the OTDL.

Rest assured that if we had intended to exclude penalty overtime pay we would have written provisions to reflect that intent. Our agreement is that full-time employees shall be given priority scheduling for overtime; we expect that the arbitrator will confirm the language of the agreement.

Thank you for your membership in the union and for your efforts to clarify the contract.

April 9, 2008


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