Frequently Asked Questions


QCan any worker join a union in Manitoba?

A. Yes. Every worker has a legal right to form and belong to a union.


Q. Are union dues tax deductible?

A. Yes; 100% of union dues are tax deductible.


Q. What is the difference between OEM Local 987 and IUOE Local 987?

A. They are the same. OEM refers to the Operating Engineers of Manitoba. IUOE refers to the International Union of Operating Engineers. Our Manitoba Local is a chapter of IUOE.


Q. Can any member sit on the Executive Board?

A. Yes, all members in good standing can run for elected office to serve on the Executive Board.


Q. I signed a Union card and filled out the forms. What happens next?

A. If you are currently employed, the form you filled out will have authorized your employer to deduct a one-time payment for the initiation fee required to join the Union. After we receive your full initiation fee, you will become a probationary member.


Q. How long will I remain on probation?

A. All new Union members must complete a six-month probation period. During this time, you must keep your Out-of-Work dues paid up three months in advance at all times, so that you can remain in good standing with the Union. After six months, you will be eligible to become an active member.


Q. What are Out-of-Work Dues?

A. All Union members must pay monthly dues. While you are working for a Union company or on a Union Project, the company will deduct your Union dues directly from your pay cheque. If you are not working, you are responsible for paying this monthly minimum, which are then called Out-of-Work dues.


Q. I was only given a temporary (paper) membership card. How do I apply for a permanent one?

A. Approximately two months after you become an active Union member, you will receive a permanent card. The temporary membership card you receive upon filling in your application is your only proof of membership until a permanent card arrives, so please hold onto this until you receive your permanent card.


Q. How will you know if I get laid off?

A. As most employers do not inform us when they have laid off an employee, it is up to you to call us as soon as possible to let us know. Once we update your status, we can then put you on the Out-of-Work list.


Q. What is an Out-of-Work List?

A. Should you be Out-of-Work, you may add your name to a list so that when we receive a job order, you have a chance to be hired. You are allowed to have your name on up to three lists, as per the Dispatch Rules. When a job order comes in, we will then go through the lists and phone those who fill the requirements.


Q. What are the Dispatch Rules?

A. The Dispatch Rules can be found here: Dispatch Rules. Or you may contact the union office to receive a printed booklet.


Q. So what exactly is expected of me?

A. When you are not working for a Union company or a Union project, it is your responsibility to pay your monthly out of work dues and check in by telephone every month.


Q. What do you mean check in?

A. As per the Dispatch Rules, all members are required to “check in,” either by telephone or e-mail, to let us know that you are still available for work should a job order come in. If you are leaving a message on the answering system, please leave your full name and phone number.


Q. What do I do when I work out of province on a Travel Card?

A. Your union dues must be in good standing to obtain a Travel Card, and remain in good standing with OE987 while you are working out of province. All working dues that are deducted off your wages when you work out of province remain in the province where you are employed. So it is still your responsibility to continue to pay your monthly Out of Work dues to OE987.