Letterhead


September 10, 2003 minutes

MINUTES - REGULAR MONTHLY MEETING, NORTH OKANAGAN LABOUR COUNCIL AT VERNON:


AFFILIATES PRESENT

Pat Bulmer CEP 2000

Judi Filion BCGEU 707

David Doran Carp 1346

Mary Malerby BCNU

Steve Malerby BC Forum

Doug Knowler TWU 6

Karen Abramsen BC Forum

Louise Turner HEU

Pat Munro HSA

Dave Porteous UFCW 120B

Ron Bobowski CUPW 760

Jeff Carsience Carp 1370

Gordie Larkin CLC

Elizabeth Woods BCGEU

GUESTS

Debra Critchley Vernon Women's Centre

Faye Saxon OPEIU 15

REGRETS

Cathy Seagris BCGEU 607

Trudy Ames BCGEU 307

Cheryl Stone UFCW 1518

Kevin Hagglund CEP 823-M


CALL TO ORDER

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

ADOPTION OF THE AGENDA

M/S/C to adopt agenda of September 10, 2003


GUEST SPEAKERS

Debra Critchley - Vernon Women's Centre, B.C. Coalition of Women's Centres.

Debra reported that all 37 women's centres in B.C. are having their core funding cut completely by March 1, some sooner. Rural and northern centres are most at risk. The Vernon centre will be one of many forced to close. The coalition has met three times with Minister of State for Women's Equality Lynn Stephens, who said she couldn't reverse the government's cuts. George Abbott, Stephens' boss, refuses to meet with the women's groups and Stephens is unwilling to help the coalition arrange meetings with Abbott or Premier Gordon Campbell. Women's centres are asking municipalities to support a UBCM resolution, which will ask the province to reverse the funding cuts. Three coalition delegates will go to Ottawa to meet with Paul Martin, Jack Layton and others to discuss the future of women's centres. Federal funding cuts eight years ago made the centres more dependent on the province. A rally will be held Sept. 19 in front of MLA Tom Christensen's office at 3334 - 30th Ave. in Vernon.


ADOPTION OF THE PREVIOUS MINUTES

M/S/C to adopt the minutes of June 4, 2003.

CREDENTIALS REPORT

16 present with 14 delegates and 2 guests

OBLIGATION OF NEW DELEGATES

Elizabeth Woods, BCGEU, was sworn in as a new delegate.

FINANCIAL REPORT

M/S/C to adopt financial report, which includes $1,000 donation to Central Okanagan, South Okanagan-Similkameen United Way Community Care Fund to assist fire victims (Funds provided to labour council by CLC to be used for such a purpose) and $200 donation in the name of UFCW 1518 to the Kelowna Community Food Bank for its efforts in helping fire victims. (Funds were sent to us for a Labour Day picnic, which we did not hold this year).

EXECUTIVE BOARD REPORT/ACTION CORRESPONDENCE

a) Maquila Solidarity Network renewal request for 2003. Tabled so secretary-treasurer can check to see when it is time for us to renew.

b) BC Federation of Labour asking affiliates to support BCTF in opposing Bill 51: Teaching Professions Act, which allows Education Minister Christy Clark to take control of the College of Teachers by appointing her own slate of directors, among other things. - NOLC will send a letter of support to the Vernon Teachers Association and Central Okanagan Teachers Association and also ask both groups to affiliate with the labour council.

c) Kelowna and District Society for Community Living asks us to take out a membership or make a donation to the society. - A voting membership is $10. We will become a member.

d) CLC mid-term conference, "Unions on the Move," Oct. 17-19 in Ottawa. Draft agenda and registration form included. Youth convention Oct. 16. - Receive and file.

e) WCB invitation to Dave Doran to attend reception hosted by WCB board, Sept. 16, 5-7 p.m., at the Ramada Lodge. Receive and file. Dave Doran can't attend, but several others involved with the labour council will be there.

f) Thank you card from Kirk Warkotsch for sending him to Camp Rainbow. Passed around for delegates to see.

g) NDP convention (Nov. 21-23) call and information. Table to October meeting.

h) CLC report: Falling Unemployment Insurance Protection for Canada's Unemployed. CLC and BC Fed asking labour councils for follow-up action. Discussed under new business.

i) E-mail from Barry Dorval, 2nd v-p, Vernon Teachers Association. Education forum, 7 p.m. Sept. 17 at Schubert Centre. would like to see some labour voices in attendance. Information passed on to delegates.

M/S/C to approve executive board report.


REPORTS OF LOCAL UNIONS, COMMITTEE REPORTS, CLC REPORT

Liz Woods, BCGEU: The government invited the union to renew the current master collective agreement for another two years with no concessions. The current c/a does not expire until April 2004. The union agreed to meet with the government (employer) to explore the possibility of renewing with greater job security language. Negotiations began during the week of Sept. 8, 2003. In the event an agreement is reached, it will be put to the membership for ratification. If negotiations are unsuccessful, bargaining is still available next spring in the normal manner.
Healthcare: BCGEU and HEU are meeting with representatives to review collective agreement provisions. The possibility of concessions being made is very real. This will prevent continuing layoffs and contracting out.
Many government workers laid off during the past 18 months are being called back due to staff shortages and high workloads.

Gordie Larkin, CLC: Our national campaign to reform the EI program is lobbying across the country to support changes to the system. We ask this labour council to meet with Werner Schmidt, MP. The Pacific region of the CLC has donated money to Southern Interior councils to aid victims of the forest fires. We continue to mobilize for the fight against the WTO and trade agreements. We ask for your support by adopting our resolution and sending it to your member of parliament and distributing our petition, which can be downloaded at The draft course outline of the CLC Harrison winter school is available. The brochure will be published in a month or so.

Cheryl Stone, UFCW 1518: There is still no settlement with Safeway. Safeway applied to the Labour Relations Board on Aug. 19 for an vote. This occurred because we the members voted 53% No to the final offer. The vote took place on Sept. 3-4 and the result was still No, by 55% this time, rejecting Safeway's final offer. We are not sure how many times we the members have to say no, but I think they may get the picture now, at last! Our negotiating committee is meeting to determine what the union's course of action will be next.

Judi Filion, BCGEU 707: Okanagan University College support staff will begin negotiations on Sept. 15. We have been without a collective agreement since June 30, 2002. The OUC Kelowna Student Society support staff are currently negotiating their first collective agreement.

Pat Bulmer, CEP 2000: Negotiations started last month between CEP 2000 and GCIU 25 and the Kelowna Daily Courier and Penticton Herald. More talks are being held this month. Our collective agreement expired in June. The Daily Courier has a new managing editor. John , a sports and news reporter here in the early and mid 90s, is the new editorial boss. CEP 2000's annual congress takes place Sept. 27-28 in Burnaby.

Finance Review Committee progress report attached to minutes.

UNFINISHED BUSINESS

- Spring school - The 2004 spring school will be scheduled for March 6-7. Judi Filion will handle registrations and Karen Abramsen will take charge of organizing courses.


NEW BUSINESS

- CLC's report - M/S/C to organize a meeting with MP Werner Schmidt about the report (Falling Unemployment Insurance protection for Canada's Unemployed). He has already indicated he will be available Thanksgiving week.


- CLC resolution re: WTO/FTAA - M/S/C to endorse the CLC's resolution and forward to area .


FINAL CREDENTIALS REPORT

16 total, 14 delegates, 2 guests

ADJOURNMENT

Meeting adjourned at 8:10 p.m.

Respectfully submitted by Pat Bulmer, recording secretary.



The next meeting will be Wednesday, October 8, 7 p.m., at the BCGEU office, 1591 Sutherland Avenue, Kelowna.


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