March 6, 2002 minutes



Judi Filion BCGEU 707

Pat Bulmer CEP 2000

Tracie Connor HEU

Trudy Ames BCGEU 307

Tony Heisterkamp Carp 1346

Ron Bobowski CUPW 760

Gordie Larkin CLC

Brenda Hitchen BCNU

Sharon Rauhale BCNU

Gene Beattie CEP 951

David Doran Carp 1346

Louise Turner HEU

Doug Kantymir UFCW1518


Karen Abramsen NDP, Council of Canadians


Cathy Seagris BCGEU 607


The meeting was called to order by President David Doran at 7:35 p.m.


M/S/C to adopt agenda of March 6, 2002




M/S/C to adopt the minutes of February 6, 2002.


14 present with 13 delegates and 1 guests


An application for affiliation was received from the BCNU - Thompson North Okanagan. BCNU delegates Brenda Hitchen and Sharon Rauhale were sworn in, along with CEP 951 (Crown Packaging - Kelowna) delegate Gene Beattie. Executive members in attendance were also sworn in.


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


a) CLC anti-racism forum registration form. Forum takes place March 23-24 in Vancouver - receive and note

b) BC Fed workshop - Union strategies for the Liberal Era, March 8-9 in Burnaby - receive and note

c) Convention call, credentials etc for CLC convention, starting June 10, 2002 in Vancouver - Send President David Doran with all expenses paid and recording secretary Pat Bulmer with all but lost wages paid (Since the meeting, Bulmer learned he could not get the time off.) Also, the labour council will send a letter to the CLC endorsing direct affiliation to the CLC for B.C. carpenters, whose international is threatening to pull out of the organization.

d) Day of Mourning information from CLC - receive and note

M/S/C to approve executive board report


David Doran, President:
Labour Council Officers
This session at Harrison is designed to find out what Labour Councils have been doing and plan for the coming year.
Ongoing campaigns include:
- Is work working for you?
- Sweatshops
- Cancer Prevention
- G8 Summit at Kannanaskis
- Security, C36, what it means to trade unionists?
A labour council database is being set up.
Seth Klein from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives gave us a rundown of the Liberal programs so far:
- Government jumping on neo-conservative train just as the train is derailing. (Enron, Walkerton)
- Klein and Harris ran their election campaigns on cuts. (Not in BC)
- Task forces are exclusive to business as to how to measure progress
- Deregulation plans to come
- Lower standard of living and increase the inequality.
Cathy Corrigan of the GVRD spoke to us about the fight to prevent the privatization of the GVRD’s water system. She also told us about the ramifications of privatization under the Free Trade Agreement and the Community Charter.
Mike MacIsaac from the CLC spoke to us about the national campaign for EI. The Vancouver and District Labour Council put forward a resolution supporting the need for advocacy in EI appeals. Issues of the protesters guide were given out, copies are available on request.
Community Charter - this document is not the same as the Municipal Act, it has way more power and autonomy.
- No new power without the resources to pay for them, which means councils will have the ability to tax.
- Copies of the CUPE brief to the Community Charter Committee is available on request.

Unions in the community
This course is being developed for members of Labour Councils. Using a pro-active approach, we look at:
- how to look at people
- the hierarchy of human needs
- the requirements of leadership
- the qualities of leadership
- leading and organizing volunteers
Community solutions by finding ways to:
- set their own human care agendas and;
- work together to carry them out
- have a collective impact on the issues it cares about
The intended outcomes of Building Community Solutions Initiative:
- A product and process;
- Dynamic collaboration
- Partnerships among all key stakeholders
- A critical strategy for rallying community-wide understanding and support for building strong and healthy communities.
The class was divided into four groups and each was asked to deliver a program that would make the Labour Council more visible in the community.
The components of the program had to include:
- The project must be do-able
- Must have a social service component
- Must have an educational component
- Must have a political action component
One group brought forward the proposal to education people in the community to get out and vote. This is based on the premise that generally people in the lower income brackets don't vote.
The next proposal was for a multicultural fair to help dispel racism problems in our community.
Another proposal was hands on our community. The goal was to deal with the cuts in the community. Focus on the things that build communities, not divide it.
The fourth proposal was truth to youth - getting involved with youth centres and high school students.
These proposals were deemed to fall within the prerequisite set out above. To do anything of this magnitude is going to take a commitment from members. We will talk about the feasibility of these types of projects at Labour Council meetings in the future.

Gordie Larkin, CLC: Province-wide actions against provincial government cutbacks continue. Thirteen communities held rallies and meetings to co-incide with the rally of 20,000 in Victoria. Actions will continue until Campbell withdraws these draconian pieces of legislation. Candidate search for the municipal elections is in high gear.

Karen Abramsen, Council of Canadians: The local Chapter of the Council of Canadians is concerned about threats to BC Hydro (deregulation and privatization), the sale of water and the Agreement in Trade (AIT) that could see municipalities unable to give preferential treatment to local suppliers. The Council is concerned and alarmed that our provincial assets seem to be "for sale" by the current Liberal government that sees $ signs everywhere. Also, the C of C is hosting a public meeting on World Water Day, March 22 with special guest speaker Jim Sinclair. The meeting is at 7:30 p.m. at First United Church Hall (Bernard and Richter) in Kelowna. Free.


a) Spring school update

There were 82 participants in this year's spring school. The courses that ran were:
- Basic Steward - Greg Edwards instructor
- Steward II - Barb Burke, instructor
- Assertiveness training - Heather Lee, instructor
- Facing Management - Ian Schierbeck and George Doubt, instructors
- Provincial Labour Law - Art Larocque, instructor
- BC Fed OH&S course - Sheila Moir, instructor
Brother George Heyman, president of the BC Government and Service Employees Union, was our guest speaker.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank the instructors for making themselves available to facilitate for us this year, Brother Heyman for taking time out of his busy schedule to come and speak to us, Brother David Doran for his assistance at the school and Sister Cathy Seagris for her support and help this year.
In solidarity,
Judi Filion,
North Okanagan Labour Council

b) Rally update - 1,200 people came out to the Feb. 23 rally in Kelowna to protest Liberal service and job cuts. As well there were 350 people in Vernon, 350 in Penticton and 400 in Salmon Arm at rallies, President David Doran reported. As a result of an advertising snafu (An ad for the Kelowna rally was placed in a non-union paper over a union newspaper), the following motion was moved, seconded and carried: "As the North Okanagan Labour Council adheres to a buy-union policy, wherever possible, so this philosophy should extend to the purchasing of advertising. Therefore, the NOLC reaffirms that it will choose union publications and union media, in particular those with NOLC members, as the first choice for placement of NOLC advertising."

c) Softball tournament - Bruce Newby of CUPW has agreed to be the co-ordinator of the NOLC softball tournament, slated to take place July 13-14 at the Mission sports fields in Kelowna.


a) International Women's Day - March 8. Not many events are planned locally as groups have been involved in many other activities recently. A rally was scheduled for noon in front to MLA Tom Christensen's office on March 8. Some material from the BC Fed was read and circulated.


14 total, 13 delegates, 1 guest


Meeting adjourned at 8:35 p.m.

Respectfully submitted by Pat Bulmer, acting recording secretary.

The next meeting will be Wednesday, April 10, 7:30 p.m., at the BCGEU office, 1591 Sutherland Avenue, Kelowna

Go back to News & Notes