Anti-bullying day statement from BCGEU President Darryl Walker on Pink Shirt Day – February 29

February 29, 2012

Severe depression, nausea, headaches, chest pain, and panic attacks. These are a few of the physical reactions to being bullied.

The BCGEU believes no one should be harmed and made miserable just for going to work. Respect in the workplace is a cornerstone of your union’s work. We take the issue of bullying very seriously.

Bullying is a difficult and complex issue that requires constant attention. Today, on Pink Shirt Day, an annual event promoting anti-bullying awareness, we remind you the BCGEU is a strong advocate of respect in the workplace and we’re continuing to put mechanisms in place to address the problem. We’ve organized member and public awareness campaigns, and held workshops to ensure our members are knowledgeable about workplace bullying and the steps they can take when they encounter it.

We’ve also negotiated anti-bullying language into collective agreements. For instance, we negotiated a Memorandum of Understanding (#13) with the B.C. Government in 2010. The MOU, entitled Bullying in the Workplace, is contained in our 15th Master Agreement. The MOU outlines the process for handling bullying complaints in the B.C. Government. In the present round of bargaining we’ve brought forward additional proposals and processes to strengthen the language. We also negotiated anti-bullying language in our recent collective agreement for component 17 members at BC Place (PAVCO).

If you’re facing bullying in the workplace, please let your steward know. Your union is here to help.

We’ve updated our fact sheet about workplace bullying. It’s available here for you to download (pdf). 

Please take the time to learn more about bullying and how you can address it in your workplace.

Keep watching the BCGEU website for updates about our anti-bullying efforts and campaigns.

(Photos: [top] BCGEU President Darryl Walker with the union's specially designed pink scarf
[bottom] BCGEU master bargaining committee wear scarves to meeting with PSA negotiators)