Letterhead


June 9, 2004 minutes

MINUTES - REGULAR MONTHLY MEETING, NORTH OKANAGAN LABOUR COUNCIL AT KELOWNA

AFFILIATES PRESENT

Ron Bobowski CUPW 760

Jeff Carsience UBCJ 1370

Pat Bulmer CEP 2000

Trudy Ames BCGEU 307

Judi Filion BCGEU 707

Louise Turner HEU

Karen Abramsen BC Forum

Pat Munro HSA - Kelowna

Dave Porteous UFCW 120

Kathy Dunn HEU

Liz Woods BCGEU

Kevin Hagglund CEP 823 - M

Dona Frayn BCGEU 1207

Steve Malerby BC Forum

Maria Tokarchuk HSA

Ken Robinson HEU

Bill Zeman CUPE 3523

GUESTS

Eileen Robinson NDP

Gord Larkin CLC

Joe Aertofeauft

Faye Saxon OPEIU 15

REGRETS

Glenn Nowag Local 40

David Doran Carp 1346


CALL TO ORDER

The meeting was called to order by Vice-President Jeff Carsience at 7:05 p.m.


ADOPTION OF THE AGENDA

M/S/C to adopt agenda of June 9, 2004


GUEST SPEAKERS

none

ADOPTION OF THE PREVIOUS MINUTES

M/S/C to adopt the minutes of May 5, 2004.

CREDENTIALS REPORT

19 present with 15 delegates and 4 guests

OBLIGATION OF NEW DELEGATES

none

FINANCIAL REPORT

M/S/C to adopt financial report as circulated.

EXECUTIVE BOARD REPORT/ACTION CORRESPONDENCE

a) BCGEU seeks donations for its golf tournament on Aug. 1. NOLC to sponsor a hole for $150. A banner at the site will announce our contribution.

b) CLC is joining the "Play Fair at the Olympics - Respect Workers' Rights "Campaign and has included a petition to be passed around.

c) Canadian Labour Congress requests that the NOLC join the B.C. Health Coalition. NOLC to join for $50.

d) United Way kickoff breakfast is Wednesday, Sept, 8, 6:45 a.m.. at the Coast Capri. Tickets $20 each or $200 for a table of 10. Deadline Aug. 20. We will buy a table and Jeff Carsience will be our contact person on this. Contact Jeff at j_carsience@shaw.ca if you wish to attend.

e) BC Young New Democrats asking for donations to help cover expenses of their annual convention in Cumberland, June 19-20. We will send $50.

f) BC Federation of Labour convention call (Nov. 29-Dec. 3) and hotel registration form (Westin Bayshore - $89 a night). Deadline Oct. 22. Table to September meeting.

M/S/C to accept the executive board report.


REPORTS OF LOCAL UNIONS, COMMITTEE REPORTS, CLC REPORT

Faye Saxon - worker representative for Board of Referees for Employment Insurance - During a recent appeal procedure, an interesting fact came to light. In B.C., it is possible for a person leaving an employment (layoff, downsizing etc) to receive in cash an amount previously set aside for pension purposes - both employee's portion and employer's. In Alberta and Quebec, it is not possible to take any amount in cash from a pension account. The latter seems a better provision for the long term. Perhaps this is a problem that should be reviewed by labour councils, CLC and individual unions. There may be a requirement to try to have the B.C. Pension Act modified. In the recent case, the worker was a woman in her fifties, after more than 20 years with the same company. Her job prospects seemed pretty bleak and she said she required the money now. The result as it impacts unemployment benefits: the portion which was contributed by the employer is allocated at the usual weekly salary amount. This means that the worker who does not now have a job, may not collect benefits until this amount has been used up.

Ken Robinson, HEU Kelowna - HEU's Kelowna local would like to extend a huge thank you for all the support they received on the picket and protest lines last month that went up as a result of Bill 37. It was a dispute about respect, dignity and collective bargaining. Bill 37 will continue to create havoc in the healthcare system for years to come, just as Bill 29 has for the last 2 1/2 years. Whether it was the financial donations, food and beverage donations, or walking the lines, it was all appreciated. It is impossible to list all the unions that supported us, but thank you. The solidarity was inspiring. Also, to all the unions and their members that were ready to support the job actions that were planned for Monday, thank you. It would have been a powerful day and maybe week. Having members ready and willing to walk off the job for another union was incredible and is what the movement is about. May we continue to build on our Solidarity and continue to be ready to protest against all of the B.C. Liberals' unjust and regressive actions on a daily basis.

Pat Bulmer, recording secretary - A reminder we are making plans to send minutes out in the fall by e-mail to those who would prefer to receive them that way. If you'd like to get your minutes by e-mail, let me know at nolc@shaw.ca. Include both your e-mail and mailing addresses.

Karen Abramsen
EI Board of Referees - I will be attending a follow-up training in Toronto on June 14-16. The focus will be on Decision Writing. Because I am significantly involved in a local election campaign for Starleigh Grass, I have been advised that I am not able to sit on any appeals during the election. I have questioned the rationale and while I have agreed not to sit, I am not satisfied with the explanation.
Council of Canadians - The council is engaging voters in a campaign called "On June 28, Vote for the Canada You Want!" The issues we are asking voters to consider are: clean water; fair trade; public health; safe food; Canadian sovereignty; and the U.S. missile defence system. Please attend forums and on June 28, get out and vote.

UNFINISHED BUSINESS

a) Labour school, Oct. 2-3 - Karen Abramsen reported that we intend to offer the same courses that were to be offered in the spring (which had to be cancelled due to CLC staff strike). Watch for a mailing over the summer with registration forms and course details.

b) Report from Southern Interior Labour Councils meeting June 5 in Kamloops. Ron Bobowski reported on the annual meeting of the six southern interior councils. Some highlights: Pat Bulmer, Judi Filion, Ron Bobowski and Jeff Carsience attended for the NOLC. Barb Burke of the HEU bargaining committee and president of the South Okanagan Boundary Labour Council, gave a debriefing on the HEU strike and settlement. Jim Sinclair, president of the B.C. Federation of Labour, also talked at length about the HEU strike and also current and upcoming elections. One comment of note, the goal of the May 2005 provincial election does not stop at defeating the Liberals - after the election, the labour movement must continue to push an NDP government for the things we want, such as stopping privatization. Sinclair also noted 14 union candidates are running in B.C. in the current federal election. Kamloops NDP candidate Brian Carroll also spoke and answered questions. Next year's meeting tentatively planned for May 28 in Kelowna.

c) Summer camp draws. Draws were held for one boy and one girls (age 9-14) to attend Silver Lake Forestry Camp this summer. Winners were: Girl - Kelsey Iceton (mother Mary Lou of HSA); Boy - CJ Rasmussen (son of Clark of CUPW). Alternates: Darilyn Bowden (mom Donna of CUPW) and Jeremy Dillabough (Susan of CUPW).


NEW BUSINESS

a) M/S/C to increase monthly donation to Political Action Fund to $200.

b) South Okanagan-Boundary Labour Council would like our help with their Labour Day picnic. M/S/C to donate $100 towards picnic. That donation will increase if UFCW sends us a $200 donation for picnic, as they've done the past 2 years. Trudy Ames, Liz Woods, Pat Munro and David Porteous volunteered to help with the picnic.

c) M/S/C/ to support a proposed constitutional amendment proposal likely to come to next B.C. Federation of Labour convention that would increase number of labour council delegates on executive council from 4 to 5.

GOOD AND WELFARE

BCGEU golf tournament is back - Sunday, Aug. 1, 2004. All proceeds go to the United Way. Mission Creek Golf Course. Shot gun start at 7:30 am. $65 - 18 holes and BBQ lunch. $55 - 9 holes and BBQ lunch. $20 - Lunch only. For further information, call Judi Filion at (250) 868-8408 or e-mail her at: judifilion@silk.net or call Pat Dickson at (604) 467-6992. Registration deadline is July 16 .

BCGEU office in Kelowna is on the move, probably around Sept. 1, to the Tutt Street area of Kelowna. That means our Kelowna meetings will be moving too. We don't have the exact address for you yet, but will well before our next Kelowna meeting, slated for Oct. 6.

FINAL CREDENTIALS REPORT

21 total, 17 delegates, 4 guests

ADJOURNMENT

Meeting adjourned at 8 p.m.

Respectfully submitted by Pat Bulmer, recording secretary.



The next meeting will be Wednesday, September 8, 2004, 7 p.m., at the Village Green Hotel, Vernon.


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