Participation in slowdown is dereliction

The grievor had been involved, with others, on a work slowdown immediately prior to a production cut-back. He claimed that, as a utility worker, it was not his responsibility to move the product in question. The arbitrator ruled it was, as he relieved the forklift drivers while they went on break.
By Mark Rogers
|Canadian Labour Reporter|Last Updated: 08/17/2012

A Utility Operator at a steel mill was disciplined for dereliction of duty after he failed to follow standard practice and relieve the other forklift operators who were on break.

M.J. had about four years’ experience working as a Utility Operator at a steel mill. As a Utility Operator, it was M.J.’s job to relieve the other five Forklift Operators while they took half-hour breaks during their 12-hour shifts.

Forklift Operators were a key part of production at the mill because they were responsible for moving the finished, two-tonne coils of rolled steel through the various stages of processing at the plant.