As you know, the parties were in the process of negotiating essential services in order for your union to be in a position to serve 72 hours' strike notice. (When an employer requests essential services, this matter must be resolved before strike notice can be served.) We had been working towards a withdrawal of services by no later than September 30, 2020 as this would have been the last day of the current strike mandate.
Strike Mandate Extended
Today the parties agreed to extend the period in which employees may strike to 5 months immediately following the date of the vote, meaning our deadline to action the strike mandate is now November 30, 2020. Among other things, this should give the parties sufficient time to resolve the matter of essential services without rushing to meet an imminent deadline. The extension will also allow your strike coordinating committee to continue strike planning-including providing answers to the questions you've asked-in a more measured way.
Return to Bargaining Table
In the meantime, your employer has invited your bargaining committee back to the table. To be clear, BCFMA previously indicated it has no monetary moves left to make and this has not changed. However, your bargaining committee sees value in accepting this invitation. At very least, it would allow your new committee to hear the reasons for impasse directly from your employer. The parties would also be able to discuss and digest the potential implications of the current provincial election on bargaining. Your bargaining committee has accepted BCFMA's invitation and the parties are looking to confirm a date within the next three calendar weeks. We will share this date with you as soon as it is confirmed.
Another advantage of the extended strike mandate is that it will allow your bargaining committee and strike coordinating committee to build organizing strategies to engage more directly with all of you as we collectively chart our course forward. As we said previously, we are committed to not only keeping the membership in the loop, but also to ensuring your needs, wants and ideas are brought to bear. As a first step, we have created a central email address via which you may send questions and comments to your entire bargaining committee: BCFMAbargaining@gmail.com.
You can expect a further bulletin as soon as we have more to report.
Kelvin Kum, Bargaining Committee Member (Victoria)
Brian Moore, Bargaining Committee Member (Burnaby)
Sherri Sebastian, Bargaining Committee Member (Kamloops)
Ryan Stewart, Staff Representative - Negotiations
Download PDF of notice here
Do you like this post?