Recently we have been receiving an increased number of comments from members asking what is being done about certain issues. But when we verify if a report has been sent in, we find that none has. This bulletin is intended to set straight the value of reporting, what reporting is and isn’t, and how to report.
On an individual basis you may not receive a satisfactory response or even notice change as a result of your health and safety complaint. However, behind the scenes, the number of complaints, and the information they share make a powerful difference.
When reporting works as intended, you won’t always notice the effects of your efforts. This is because change should and can happen before a process is implemented, product changed etc… The company proposed major service increases a few times this year. Each was either stopped or heavily diluted – in large part because our members did their part to report safety concerns. On the line, our members never had to deal with those changes. Proactive reporting is efficient when it happens in large numbers.
But lately we are receiving fewer reports. In the first two weeks of July, we have received a total of only 33 reports system-wide about the service increases despite hearing many comments and seeing many more posts on social media.
At the end of the day reporting isn’t just about your concern, it’s about our collective concerns. Your reports back us up, amplifying our voice as your representatives.
Who needs to report?
It is everyone’s responsibility under both SMS and the Canada Labour Code Part II, to report matters of health and safety to the company.
Don’t assume that someone else’s report captures your specific experience, concerns and observations related to an incident or potential hazard. These might be crucial to avoiding repeat events!
It doesn’t fall solely upon the in-charge or the captain to file reports for incidents, including but not limited to safety events, disruptive passengers, mask compliance events etc. Our members operating as in-charges are not there to file reports on our behalf.
Reports are protected from discipline:
Except for gross negligence or willful intent, you’re protected from discipline under the company’s safety reporting policy (see FAM/PUB Chapter 1) and section 147 of the Canada Labour Code Part II.
What reports do your health and safety reps see?
We are provided copies of:
- health and safety complaint e-reports
- workplace injury illness e-reports
We are not provided copies of:
- cabin safety e-reports
- disruptive passenger security e-reports
- Hazard e-reports
If you file one of these reports, we recommend providing us a copy if you intend for us to be aware.
Posting safety issues on social media?
If you have time to post or reply about an issue on FB, you have time to file a report. Period.
With many different online groups in existence, crews posting on a 24-hour clock, and highly customized viewing experiences, it is impossible for your reps to effectively monitor social media for health and safety issues.
Reporting systems exist to receive and track those complaints in an official manner – use them so that we can do our jobs representing you.
Should you still file an e-report if you told a manager about your safety concern, posted on Yammer or wrote an email about it?
YES. The Canada Labour Code stipulates that the company must attempt to resolve your health and safety complaint with you as soon as possible and allows for reports to be made verbally or in writing. This means that the clock starts ticking as soon as you’ve told a manager about it – no matter how.
That said, we have no way of knowing about a verbal complaint, or an email sent to a manager.
A formal report is entered and tracked in a database. This means that we not only see your complaint, but also the company’s response to you and whether you consider this satisfactory and why. Your report also gets associated to hazards and is used to calculate important statistics that help drive change. Finally, by e-reporting, you can automatically refer your complaint to the joint health and safety committee if the company is unable to resolve the issue with you directly.
To ensure we are aware of your concerns, and that your rights are upheld, follow up on any verbal or email report using an e-report:
- When prompted, select that you have already raised the issue with your manager
- In the summary, state how and when.
Important note: You do not have to raise your concerns with a manager before submitting a health and safety complaint e-report.
The employer must attempt to resolve your concern as soon as possible, which has been defined by TC/ESDC as 30 days from the time it was initially raised with the company. If you receive no response, or the company is unable to resolve the issue you may refer it to the joint H&S Committee for investigation.
What if I call the local union office?
Expect your rep to request that a report is submitted before having a discussion. This isn’t your union ignoring you, but rather ensuring that you are guided to the only process that ensures your rights are upheld as a worker when it comes to safety. It will be our pleasure to chat once a report has been submitted. Should you need assistance filing a report, we can help!
How to report:
– Sims.aircanada.ca or ACaeronet > Safety > Submit a safety report/SIMS
- Sign in using your Aeronet login credentials
- In the report menu at the top right of the screen, scroll down and select health and safety complaint e-report.
– AC e-reporting app for iOS (Android coming soon)
- On in-charge iPads
- Downloadable for FA’s ACAeronet > IFS > ePub > Administrative Procedures > cabin mobility > iMenu
– Paper-based forms are still available at the crew centres for use by flight attendants only.
– Follow e-reporting process as outlined in your PUB.
Your Air Canada Component of CUPE Health and Safety Committee