BCGEU member Bryce Casavant removed from Conservation Officer Service after refusing to euthanize bear cubs

BCGEU/NUPGE pursuing arbitration to resolve unjust discipline issues.

Vancouver (28 Aug. 2015) —The B.C. Government and Service Employees' Union (BCGEU/NUPGE) and Bryce Casavant learned this week that he is being transferred out of the Conservation Officer Service. Casavant was originally suspended in July when he followed Conservation Officer Service procedures and policies and determined two bear cubs near Port Hardy should not be killed.

BCGEU/NUPGE files second grievance in Casavant's case

“Our union has filed a grievance over Bryce Casavant’s original suspension. We are now in the process of filing a second grievance concerning his disciplinary transfer from the Conservation Officer Service,” says BCGEU President Stephanie Smith. “Bryce Casavant was following clear procedures when he decided to save these young bears. We will pursue these issues to an arbitration hearing and ask an independent decision maker to find there was no just cause for the employer's actions.”

“Casavant should not have been suspended, and he should not be transferred from his job as a Conservation Officer,” says Smith. “He has a distinguished record of public service in law enforcement. Bryce Casavant did the right thing when he decided these young bears should be assessed for rehabilitation.”

Conservation Service motto —Integrity, Service and Protection —but not when it comes to saving bear cubs

“The BCGEU has worked in good faith to negotiate a reasonable settlement that was satisfactory to Bryce Casavant and the Conservation Officer Service. We are surprised and disappointed by this punishment that removes him from his career. Our union remains committed to negotiating a fair and reasonable settlement,” says Smith. “We believe Bryce Casavant was working to the highest ideals of the Conservation Officer Service whose motto is Integrity, Service and Protection.”

The BCGEU/NUPGE will schedule an arbitration hearing as soon as possible.

More information: 

Conservation Officer suspension story goes international

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The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 360,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. NUPGE

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