CANADIAN RAILWAY OFFICE OF ARBITRATION
& DISPUTE RESOLUTION
CASE NO. 3756
CANADIAN NATIONAL RAILWAY COMPANY
Discharge of Locomotive Engineer Craig Cameron.
JOINT STATEMENT OF ISSUE:
Following the investigation, the Company issued a Discipline
Form 780 dated
The Company disagrees.
(SGD.) P. VICKERS (SGD) R. A. BOWDEN
FOR: GENERAL CHAIRMAN MANAGER, LABOUR RELATIONS
There appeared on behalf of the Corporation:
B. Hogan –
Manager, Labour Relations,
D. VanCauwenbergh –
Director, Labour Relations,
And on behalf of the
J. C. Morrison –
P. Vickers –
C. Cameron – Grievor
AWARD OF THE ARBITRATOR
The record discloses that the grievor had fifty demerits, albeit under grievance, on his record at the time of the incident giving rise to his termination. Mr. Cameron was assessed twenty-five demerits for booking rest when he was not entitled to do so, namely upon being taxied from Toronto to Novar, a location near Huntsville, where he was immediately to commence service as the engineer on a work train. In fact upon arrival in Novar he booked eight hours personal rest.
The gist of the grievor’s case is that he believed that he was being simply deadheaded to Novar and would have the opportunity to book rest as the deadhead portion of his assignment would be treated as a separate assignment, rather than as part of a combined service.
Upon a review of the record the Arbitrator has some difficulty with the grievor’s perception. A review of the conversation between Mr. Cameron and the crew dispatcher establishes that he was clearly told that he was to be in service on the work train, and that he was being called for 08:40 to proceed to Novar by taxi in furtherance of that assignment. I am satisfied that the grievor then knew, or reasonably should have known, that by reason of a shortage of sleep he would not be fit to perform the work at Novar as expected. His failure to communicate that to the Company, and to then proceed to Novar where he then booked off for eight hours of personal rest, caused the assignment to be substantially delayed, requiring other employees to remain idle. I am satisfied that the grievor did make himself liable to discipline for his actions.
The Union objects to the delay between the incident and the
time the Company held its investigation. While there is obviously some delay
between the incident on
There is one mitigating factor to consider, which is that it is not uncommon for persons in the position of the grievor to be called to deadhead to the location of a work train, in the expectation that they will rest at that location and commence work after their period of rest. While I am satisfied that that was not the nature of the assignment given to Mr. Cameron, there may nevertheless have been some degree of error of judgement on his part. In the circumstances the Arbitrator is satisfied that this is an appropriate case for a substitution of penalty.
The grievance is therefore allowed, in part. The Arbitrator directs that the grievor be reinstated into his employment forthwith, without any compensation for wages and benefits lost and without loss of seniority. The period of time from his termination to his reinstatement shall be recorded as a suspension for the purposes of his discipline record.