October 9, 2013 minutes
MINUTES - MONTHLY MEETING, NORTH OKANAGAN LABOUR COUNCIL AT VERNON
AFFILIATES PRESENT: Cheryl Stone, UFCW 1518, Andrew Pritchard, Unite Here, Helen Repole, BCGEU 1207, Louise Gibson, COPE 378, Ronn Dunn, CUPE 3523, Greg McGowan, CUPE 873, James Fox, CUPE, Carole Gordon, COTA, Nikki Inouye, HEU Vernon, Sandy Thon, BCGEU, Mark Olsen, CUPE 5523, Ian Gordon, CUPE 3523, Rod Russell, IBEW 213, Karen Abramsen, UFCW 1518
GUESTS: Craig Pohonelic, CUPE 5523, Mike Moorlag, CUPW 848, Vernon, Linda Yule, United Way NOCS
BCFORUM Delegate: Doug Gibson
REGRETS: Wynn Hartfelder, BCGEU 307, Ron Bobowski, CUPW, Susan Bauhart, COTA, Shane Curveon, ATU, Pat Bulmer, UNIFOR
CALL TO ORDER: The meeting was called to order by Andrew Pritchard, President, at 7:00 pm
ADOPTION OF AGENDA: M/S/C
GUEST SPEAKER: Linda Yule, United Way NOCS - A donation was made to the United Way NOCS, presented by Mark Olsen CUPE 5523
on behalf of the NOLC.
ADOPTION OF PREVIOUS MINUTES: Correction on September 4, 2013 minutes, that Shane Curveon, ATU, regretted attendance M/S/C
CREDENTIALS REPORT: 18 Present with 13 Delegates 4 Guests 1 BCFORUM delegate
OBLIGATIONS OF NEW DELEGATES: none
FINANCIAL REPORT: report given by Ronn Dunn, Vice President, CUPE 3523 for Ron Bobowski, Secretary Treasurer, M/S/C to adopt financial report as circulated.
EXECUTIVE BOARD REPORT/ACTION CORRESPONDENCE
REPORTS OF LOCAL UNIONS -- STANDING COMMITTEE REPORTS -- CLC REPORT:
REPORTS OF LOCAL UNIONS:
Ronn Dunn, CUPE 3523, James Fox, CUPE 523 Vernon, Pat Bulmer, UNIFOR, reported by Karen Abramsen for Pat, Mark Olsen, CUPE 5523, Sandy Thon, BCGEU, Nikki Inouye, HEU, Vernon, Andrew Pritchard, United Here Local 40, Rod Russell, IBEW 213, Doug Gibson, BCFORUM
Pat Bulmer, Unifor 2000
Unifor 2000, the Media Union of B.C., held its 15th annual congress this past weekend in Vancouver.
It's a tough time right now in the newspaper and printing industries, which our union represents (including the Kelowna Daily Courier).
Pacific Newspaper Group (the Vancouver Sun and Province) wants to close the Kennedy Heights printing plant and replace it with a smaller one, costing about 200 people their jobs. This announcement came not long after about 90 members took buyouts in the front-end departments. Then, there was Glacier's announcement it plans to contract ad makeup work to a Filipino company at several of its community papers. About 15 union jobs and some non-union jobs will be lost. Watch the number of undetected and uncorrected errors rise at those papers when that happens.
But it wasn't all bad news, our local will be going full-out with a new Unifor idea: community chapters. These are to be created to allow people to join our union without necessarily having a certification in their workplace. Congress approved creating community chapters in our local and launching a big organizing drive. We've got a plan. One of the ideas is that people who join a community chapter can get some representation from the union. We might not be able to bargain a contract for them, but we can defend and serve them in other ways.
Gary Engler, a Vancouver Sun reporter, was re-elected as one of our vice-presidents. We also celebrated some good grievance victories last year, particularly at the Vancouver papers.
James Fox -- CUPE
CUPE K-12 Sector has a tentative agreement, the agreement calls for a 3.5 % increase over the life of the contract 1% July 1, 2013 2% February, 2014 and 0.5% May 1, 2014. The wage increase is to be cost neutral meaning that it needs to come out of the existing school districts budget. Our local is now turning our attention to local bargaining which needs to be completed by December 20, 2013. This new contract will expire June 30, 2014. We currently have 4 outstanding Grievances in 523 two in the school units, Excessive Discipline and Custodial Work Assignments, and two in community social service unit Excessive Discipline and a Exclusion posting. We had a wrongfully terminated employee returned to his job.
The social services sector is fairly quiet and operating well.
Rod Russell -- IBEW 213
Rod spoke at length about his members and the pick lines in Kelowna. He has asked if everyone would please show the members on the picket lines support by either visiting or honking horns as you pass by. The North Okanagan Labour Council will be delivering $5.00 Tim Horton gift cards to members on the picket lines. Please see the motion below.
STANDING COMMITTEE REPORTS:
United Way Kelowna Kick off Breakfast -- Karen Abramsen, UFCW 1518. The United Way Kick-off breakfast was enjoyed by all. They had a slightly different format this year where some of the United Way supported charities spoke about their organizations. It was very touching and informative. The event was held at the Delta Grand Hotel this year. Our North Okanagan Labour Council was well represented as we had a full table of delegates. Thank you to all who attended.
BCFED regarding BCFORUM -- Greg McGowan, CUPE 873 -- The BC Federation of Labour sent out a notice to all Labour Councils in August 2013 regarding the BC Federation of Retired Union Members (BCFORUM) The purpose of the meeting on October 9, 2013 was to proceed with BCFORUM member recruitment initiatives and activities to increase their membership. A liason from South Okanagan Boundary Labour Council was chosen to attend the meeting. The purpose of the meeting is to work to get union affiliates to increase membership in BCFORUM. A motion was made that the NOLC help cover transportation costs up to $250.00 for the SOBLC liaison to the BCFORUM meeting on October 9, 2013 that was convened by the BC FED. M/S/C
Together Fairness Works Campaign -- Kelowna Leaders Seminar, October 5, 2013 -- report by Nikki Inouye, HEU Vernon The delegates to this Labour Council who attended the seminar said that it was very worthwhile and would definitely attend again. Delegates attending from NOLC were: Sandy Thon, BCGEU, Helen Repole, BCGEU 1207, Wynn Hartfelder, BCGEU 307, and Mike Moorlag, CUPW 848
together FAIRNESS WORKS
The together FAIRNESS WORKS initiative is the largest member-to-member engagement program in Canadian Labour history. Its goal is to have three million conversations with union members on the value of union membership. The member-to-member engagement program includes promotional material geared for the work place, training, and communications materials which affiliates can adapt for their specific local needs.
The Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) will continue to offer training over the coming months. The first round of training will be the Leaders Seminars. The Leaders Seminars are targeted toward local union leadership (presidents, unit chairs, business managers and assistants, and key local staff). The training has been completed with great success in three BC communities to date (Prince George, Victoria and Vancouver). There are two additional Leader Seminars scheduled for October 5, 2013 in Kelowna and Cranbrook.
Municipalities Matter 2014 Campaign
The CLC and labour councils have worked hard over the past few years on the Municipalities Matter Campaign. In preparation, the CLC has reconvened its provincial municipal working group, to assist in coordinating the municipal work of the affiliates
on a provincial level.
The CLC and representatives from the CLC municipal working group attended the Union of BC Municipalities (UBCM) Convention September 16 to 19, 2013. The conversations with municipal, labour and community leaders from across BC shows the continued need for strong leadership at the municipal level and reminds many of us, the significant role that labour councils play in building that leadership.
The CLC’s next step is to lead labour councils through an assessment process. This process will help guide the labour council’s future work on the municipal election. Your CLC representative will be in touch with you to discuss dates to set up a municipal assessment in your area.
Retirement Security Campaign
Below is a recent message from CLC President Ken Georgetti, addressed to CLC Canadian Council.
"PEI Finance Minister Wes Sheridan's spoke to the recent Atlantic Provinces Economic Council (APEC) Annual General Meeting, where he outlines his proposal to expand the Canada Pension Plan.
Minister Sheridan, also spoke to the CLC's Canadian Council meeting in April. He remains a strong supporter of expanding the CPP and his proposal outlined to APEC represents another avenue other provincial finance ministers may ultimately be reviewing with a view to reach a consensus on CPP expansion. PEI continues to take the position that its support for Pooled Registered Pension Plans "was and is and continues to be conditional on the provinces and federal government taking concrete steps to strengthen the Canada Pension Plan."
Minister Sheridan's proposal would raise the replacement rate from the current 25% to 40% on workers earning between $25,000 and $100,000 a year, with a short three-year phase-in period for an increase in premiums.
His proposal to keep low wage earners, with earnings of less than $25,000, from benefiting from an improved CPP seems to be a carrot to the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) in the likely futile hope the CFIB will drop its strident opposition to an expanded CPP. It, however, means large corporations like Walmart and McDonald’s and their low wage structures will continue to be subsidized by the Canadian taxpayer by higher GIS costs. Fifty-five percent of low wage earners work for medium-sized and large corporations.
It remains important to keep up the pressure on our provincial finance ministers and premiers. The CFIB is lobbying heavily in every province to sway politicians and must remind provincial politicians there is widespread support from the public, and from a wide range of pension experts.
The CLC will continue to advocate for an expanded CPP with premiers and finance ministers. Please draw upon your relationships with Members of Parliament, provincial MPPs or MLAs, premiers and finance ministers to press for an end to the impasse on expanding the CPP. The provinces should be urged to solidly back the position that any support for PRPPs is conditional on an agreed upon plan to expand the Canada Pension Plan. Quebec, Saskatchewan, British Columbia and Alberta have moved on implementing PRPPs. If other provinces follow suit, the federal government will not face any pressure to expand the CPP.
We urge you to continue the pressure on provincial politicians and would be happy to provide you with briefing material, or to accompany you to meetings you have organized with politicians on this issue. Please do not hesitate to contact our Political Action Department (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you require any briefing material or wish to have support from the CLC at your meetings with politicians."
Survey on Domestic Violence in the Workplace
When workers experience domestic violence at home, the impacts are felt in the workplace. Unions and anti-violence advocates in Canada have worked hard to pressure governments to pass workplace violence legislation that offers some protection for workers experiencing violence in the home. But there is much more we can do.
No research has been done in Canadian workplaces to learn about the prevalence and impact of domestic violence. When advocating with governments or employers for the rights of those who have been victimized, we rely on American and Australian research.
The CLC and affiliates have worked closely with the Australian Domestic and Family Violence Clearinghouse to learn about the Australian experience, and how they are leading the way in advancing the issue of dealing with domestic violence in the workplace. In partnership with Western University’s Centre for Research and Education on Violence Against Women and Children (CREVAWC) the CLC developed a draft survey and plans for conducting this survey are underway.
The CLC's objective is to survey Canadian workers regarding their experiences with domestic violence in the workplace. The target audience are union members and other workers age 15 and up, in all regions of Canada. Both men and women will be
encouraged to fill out the survey.
The survey will be online and secure, the CREVAWC and CLC will summarize the findings.
The CLC and affiliates, labour councils, and provincial and territorial federations of labour will promote the survey link in workplaces and on social media. The CLC will develop materials for stewards and other representatives in the workplace.
During the fall of 2013 the survey language will be finalized and promotional materials will be developed to promote the survey internally to leadership. Affiliates can develop their own plans for promotion according to organizational priorities and structures.
Winter 2013, the CLC will ask that affiliates please consider incorporating the launch of the survey into your plans for December 6, 2013, the National Day of Rememberance and Action on Violence against Women. The survey deadline will be June 6, 2014.
Additional information and time-lines for this initiative will be provided, but if you would like a copy of the entire background and time-line, or additional materials to build support for the initiative in your organization, please contact Chantel O’Neill, CLC Representative in the Pacific Region (604) 430-6766 ext.267.
CLC Winter School 2014
Preparations for the CLC Pacific Region Winter School 2014 are well under way. Registration for courses offered during the five weeks of training (January and February 2014) will be available on the CLC Pacific website by the end of October, 2013.
www.canadianlabour.ca/news-room/events/winter-school-2014If you would like a sneak peak of the courses being offered check the website out today at: http://www.canadianlabour.ca/news-room/events/winter-school-2014
Maquila Solidarity Network -- a motion was made to renew our membership of $150.00 to Maquila Solidarity Network M/S/C
Amnesty International -- regarding the donation tabled from Sept 4, 2013 meeting -- a donation was made in March of this year, therefore
the motion was not passed.
Remembrance Day -- A motion was made to rent a wreath from the Royal Canadian Legion for the Rutland Remembrance day event, as
well as place an ad in the Daily Courier, Kelowna, which is read in Vernon, Kelowna and Penticton, of a combined value of up to $425.00 M/S/C. An amendment was made to change the amount to $450.00 as the wreath rental is around $100.00. M/S/C
BC NDP Convention delegate – A motion was made to have Carole Gordon, COTA, Past President to NOLC, represent the NOLC at
the BC NDP Convention in November 2013. M/S/C
IBEW 213 -- A motion was made to purchase $300.00 worth of $5.00 gift cards from Tim Horton's to distribute to all of the IBEW 213 & COPE 368 members on the picket lines in Kelowna. M/S/C. Doug Gibson, BCFORUM will purchase the gift cards and distribute them to the members on the picket lines on behalf of the NOLC. Please call Doug if you would like to accompany him on his rounds. 250 765 5178
FINAL CREDENTIALS REPORT: 17 Present with 12 Delegates 4 Guests 1 BCFORUM delegate
GOOD & WELFARE
ADJOURNMENT: The meeting was adjourned at 9:00 pm by Andrew Pritchard, President M/S/C
Minutes respectfully submitted by Cheryl Stone, Recording Secretary, UFCW 1518
November 6, 2013
1091 Gordon Ave., Kelowna