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BCGEU Statement on CFNU re-admitting BCNU - BC General Employees' Union (BCGEU)

BCGEU Statement on CFNU re-admitting BCNU

Recently, the Canadian Federation of Nurses Unions (CFNU) announced their plan to re-admit the BC Nurses Union (BCNU) into their union, more than a decade after they left the CFNU because of raiding activities in our province.

BCNU raided our union, and other health care unions in BC, for several years in an attempt to build their own power at the expense of other front line health care workers.

During some of the worst years of the anti-labour BC Liberal government, many BCGEU members in the health care sector agreed to forego wage increases for themselves to support increases for LPNs. It was hard for our members when we then spent much of our union's resources fighting BCNU as they raided LPNs throughout the province.

BCNU's behaviour struck at worker solidarity-a core principle of the labour movement. Their raiding pitted workers against workers in health care facilities across the province damaging solidarity in the sector.

BCNU has not taken adequate steps to repair the damage they caused. While nurses are a key part of the national labour movement, here at home in BC, the leadership of the BCNU has work to do. Even if the CFNU re-admits them, the BCNU needs to take important steps before they can re-enter the broader labour movement.

The BC Federation of Labour (BCFed), Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) and local labour councils condemned the BCNU raiding and barred them from participating in their organizations. These organizations have clear provisions against raiding and clear processes for any union that then expresses the desire to return to the fold, including acknowledging wrongdoing, reparations and a commitment to ensuring no future raiding will occur. Those processes must be followed, and we will be working with the National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) to ensure the CFNU and BCNU are held accountable to adhering to the core values of the labour movement.