Business Managers Report High Importance Covid – 19 Update from Local IBEW 2085

March 18 2020

Please note, the IBEW Local 2085 Office

Representatives are available by phone, email
and by appointments only.


***Shop Stewards Please Read to Members On Your Job Site.***

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

As all of you are aware, the Corona Virus has started to spread throughout Canada and into our province. The Canadian government is taking steps to reduce the risk to all citizens and are advising all organizations to take necessary precautions. Due to the nature of work IBEW Local 2085 performs throughout Manitoba, some projects may be directly affected, and some may not. At this point, I have been in contact with our contractors and their association (CLRAM) to advise the following:

To the CLRAM and all IBEW Local 2085 contractors.
“Due to the concerns regarding the Covid-19 virus and for the safety of all employees and IBEW members, IBEW Local 2085 will allow 100% recall rights to all employers should they find themselves having to layoff members for a temporary basis. Members may then apply for immediate E.I benefits. Please ensure that all contractors forward a list of employees on temporary layoff due to the Covid-19 virus. Members WILL NOT be placed on the hiring books; they will be held in abeyance to return to work once it is safe to do so.”

The following protocol will also be in effect as of tomorrow, March 18th, 2020. All members will be asked to only come to the union hall if it is absolutely necessary and by APPOINTMENT ONLY! Members with appointments will be buzzed in through the back door of the Union Office. Dues payments can continue to be made via phoning the office and paying by credit card.

The COE Training Center at 550 Notre Dame Avenue, has been temporarily suspended, and students will be working from home as teaching staff will continue the balance of the program with online assignments and tests. The IBEW 2085 office at 556 Notre Dame Avenue, will remain open and effective March 23rd, with reduced staff working on a weekly rotation for the next few weeks. Staff not in office will continue to work from home and answer calls from members and contractors. The Union office and the Training Center will be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected throughout all areas. As long as risks are low on specific projects, the union office will continue to dispatch. However, we are anticipating that calls for new hire members will be drastically reduced.

I want to remind all members that we will get through this together, and I ask everyone to please take all precautions to keep yourself and your family safe. There is no need to panic as I genuinely believe we have been given enough information and guidelines to reduce the risk of the Covid -19 virus drastically.

We will be here for you to answer all concerns should they arise and will help assist our members and contractors during the upcoming weeks ahead.

• The Shop Steward course scheduled for April 9th has been postponed as the International union has temporarily stopped all training throughout Canada.
• All Safety Services and IBEW training courses delivered via the COE has also been temporally suspended. The COE will remain open to answer membership inquiries only.
• The Brandon unit # 2 meeting scheduled for March 18th, 2020, is ON as planned at 6 pm at Canada Inn Brandon.

Stay safe, take precautions, and take care of each other!


Russ Shewchuk
Business Manager IBEW Local 2085.

Join IBEW Today