February 9 2018 Re: AIP Press Release

USW 6166 Press Release re: Response to VALE AIP in Manitoba Division

I would like to update you on what has transpired over the last few days in regards to two bulletins released by Vale Corporate and the Manitoba Operations in regards to AIP.

On February 7th, 2018, Vale Corporate released a bulletin to all eligible employees in Canada in regards to AIP Communications and Payments.  I received this bulletin on the evening of February 7th and after reading the bulletin, contacted Mark Scott and expressed disappointment in the way this information was communicated. I advised Mark that he should immediately put out a follow up bulletin that would state what was happening in the Manitoba Operations for AIP payments. On the morning February 8th, Mark sent a draft of what he would be sending out for a bulletin to clarify the AIP payments. In the meantime, we started receiving feedback from a number of members stating that some Management personnel in different departments were indicating that hourly employees would get an AIP bonus and the dates of payment would be announced within the next day or two. Clearly the message from Corporate Vale was now being miscommunicated.

On February 8th, 2018, Mark Scott released a bulletin to clarify to all employees and management in the Manitoba Operations stating that there would be no hourly payment for 2017 because we did not meet the AIP payment metrics. These hourly employee AIP metrics were negotiated in the 2014 Collective Bargaining Agreement and explain the target requirements to generate such a payment. The Bulletin also stated that eligible salaried employees (management) would get an AIP payment on March 1st, 2018. What we have been told is that Salaried Management employees have a different and more complex set of metrics which they are measured by. This is apparently the reason there is an AIP payment for the salaried management employees.

We could not initially respond to anything because in a past circumstance, the Union had once received information from Vale Management stating hourly employees would get an AIP payment only to be told later that we would not. Since then, the Union has not released any information until we have received a Vale Manitoba HR Bulletin that states (in writing) whether our members would get a payment or not.

The leadership of the Union is as frustrated as the Membership must be with the information that was sent out by Corporate Vale. Unfortunately we will not receive the final results of the AIP scores as stated in the Vale Manitoba HR Bulletin until February 27th, 2018.

When the day to day decisions that impact your ability to get an AIP bonus are out of your control, the optics are not very appealing to the worker when management personnel are receiving an AIP bonus and you are not. It is obviously not well received by your Union and you the member. Considering the fact that we have a 40 million dollar challenge, I would argue that we should not be able to afford to pay Management an AIP bonus payment out of the Manitoba Operations operating budget. We are facing one of the most difficult challenges in our History with the closure of Birchtree in 2017 and the Surface Plants in July of 2018. As you know this will result in hundreds of job losses to you and to the City of Thompson. As your outgoing President, I will tell you that we will continue to work hard and do everything reasonably possible to help make the Manitoba Operations viable for our members long in to the future. Despite the unfortunate announcement of no AIP bonus payment for the hourly workforce, we still need everyone to show up for work and continue to do your job safely in order for us all to be all successful. I understand that this is probably not what anyone wants to hear at this time, but we still need to do what we can together to have good paying jobs in order to provide for our families. We are stronger together and I trust you will continue to support your outgoing Union Leadership and your new elected leadership that you will elect in the next couple of months.


Les Ellsworth