To my fellow Members & Representatives, co-workers & friends,
With the new JCBA, and some of the language changes, albeit many improvements from our old CBA, it
seemed like more than the usual number of questions were getting asked, and about subjects that we used to know
like the back of our hand. These include Overtime, Field Trips, who owns what work, Holiday Pay, etc.
So, and this should not be a surprise for those who know me, I took it upon myself and decided to spend a
lot of time learning a new system, Microsoft Visio. It’s a flowcharting program that I believe will help those of us
who are used to following troubleshooting charts and blueprints follow the JCBA. Learning this system, frankly,
was the easy part. No different than learning the jet engine on the 767. Yep, it’s easy to visualize, but, when you
try to put the steps in the correct order, now that’s a whole different story. It’s simply not as easy as the old jet
engine explanation of ‘suck-spin-burn-turn-and-blow’ when the “what if” questions start getting asked.
I’m still no expert on building flowcharts, and I’m sure an actual expert in “flowchartology” would shake
his/her head at many of my rudimentary methods. That said, I do believe the efforts put forth at trying to help
explain particular parts of the new contract will help. The goal is not to say that I’m the expert with the JCBA,
but instead to simply provide you a useful visual guide of my current understanding of the particular contract
process in question. Rest assured, with your input, I will continue to improve these flowcharts, and make them
even more useful as we all ask questions, get answers, and adjust them moving forward. Always refer to the
actual contract after using these flowcharts. In some flowcharts, a list of the applicable references I’ve found is
The objective when I started down this flowcharting challenge was, and still is, to help us all get a better
functional understanding of what processes within the JCBA should look like, without each of us spending the
untold number of hours spent researching in the various contractual articles and chapters. These simplified
visuals that I’m working on are just that, simplified representations of what the relevant contract language seems
to convey. Of course, there’s a lot of intent that I still do not know, but the goal is to provide you with a useful
simplified step-by-step of what each process should look like from the JCBA documents available to me.
Remember to always refer to the actual contract after using these flowcharts.
My hope is that these process flowcharts, as they are completed, and subsequently revise them, will help
us all, as both Members and Representatives, to better understand and enforce the JCBA we all ratified. It is also
my hope that, when you use these flowcharts, when you find areas that you think can be improved, explained
better, or adjusted based upon new information, that we will work together to make them even more useful as we
all become more knowledgeable about both this JCBA and the negotiated intent behind the language.
Please remember, THESE FLOWCHARTS ARE NOT THE CONTRACT, but instead, they are simply
tools to help us all learn, apply, and better enforce the contract. Please remember to always refer to the actual
contract after using these flowcharts. With your help, together, as a group of Union Brothers and Sisters, I
sincerely hope that we can make them even more useful, and improve them in order to strengthen our collective
ability to better enforce the newly ratified contract for us all.
TWU Local 591 Member in Good Standing
JCBA Grievance Process M&R-MLS - Rev 10-30-2020a.pdf
Flowchart Cover Letter - RDittmer.pdf