Community and social service workers in B.C. prepare for strike vote

Community Health Service and Support workers have not had a wage increase since 2009. They are paid less than acute care workers with the same duties.

logo for the Community Social Services bargainingVancouver (30 Aug. 2012) - Strike vote meetings are being scheduled across the province for members of the B.C. Government and Service Employees' Union (BCGEU/NUPGE) who work as community health service and support workers.

“After eight long months at the bargaining table, the government still refuses to budge on some key issues," said Darryl Walker, BCGEU President. "Our bargaining committee will now be seeking the strong strike mandate it needs. It’s time to send a clear message to the government that these members are prepared to stand up for a fair and reasonable settlement.”

The bargaining committee has been negotiating with the B.C. government for 15 weeks since January 2012 but little movement has been made on the issue of wages.

Negotiations resumed for two weeks in Vancouver on August 15, but the government mandate continues to be a roadblock in reaching a fair and reasonable deal.

Although progress has been made on most non-monetary items, outstanding issues include wages and benefits. BCGEU/NUPGE members working under the Community Health Service and Support Subsector agreement have not had a wage increase since 2009. They are paid less than acute care workers with the same duties.

A strong strike mandate will send the government a message that workers in the sector are frustrated with its low wage strategy.

The Community Bargaining Association represents more than 14,000 members, the majority of whom are represented by the BCGEU/NUPGE. Other unions at the table are the Health Sciences Association of B.C. (HSABC/NUPGE), the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW), the Hospital Employees Union (HEU), the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) and the United Steelworkers (UWSA).


The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 340,000 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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