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C5 - Save the date: Rally outside BCLDB head office, September 1 - BCGEU

On September 1, we're rallying for Essential Pay!

We're frustrated.
Through every wave of this pandemic, we have put ourselves and our families at risk by going to work and serving the public. Why? Because we were told by our employer and our provincial government that we were essential.
So, we went to work.
But then we were excluded from the Temporary Pandemic Pay (TPP) program. We watched as other essential workers received financial recognition for the hazards of doing their job during these exceptional times.
And still, we went to work.
We've worn buttons, received over 6,000 signatures on our petition and been told by our CEO Blain Lawson that he supports us. So, we asked for our essential pay to be funded from a portion of the BC Liquor Distribution Branch's record revenues generated during the pandemic – just like former Finance Minister Carole James encouraged pandemic profit-generating businesses do. But Blain said he doesn't have authority for such a decision.
And still, we went to work.
We then learned from Blain that Finance Minister Selina Robinson – the minister responsible for the BCLDB – can authorize financial recognition of our essential worth. So, we asked her – through letters from our union representatives, then attempted meetings with her, and when we didn't get a response, three months of leafleting, thousands of emails from supporters and two rallies outside her offices. The only thing she responded with was to say that $5 million had been spent on cleaning and supplies for workers' health and safety – nothing about funds for our essential worth.
And still, we went to work.
And still, we have no answer.
Enough is enough. It's now time to escalate our efforts to get the response we deserve.
So, we're rallying again – this time outside the BCLDB head office in Burnaby – and calling on Blain to do more for us, with us.
When: Wednesday, September 1 at 10:00 am

Where: Public property outside BCLDB Head Office (3383 Gilmore Way, Burnaby) 

Getting there/parking: There is a bus stop right outside the building. Ample free parking is available a few blocks away at the Grand Villa Casino. 

Download the rally poster to put on your workplace union board.
Your presence at this rally is critical to compelling Blain to make an appearance and directly asking Minister Robinson to authorize use of BCLDB funds (not the TPP, as he has tried to redirect us before) for our essential pay.
What to do at the rally:

  • DO bring a co-worker, friend, or family member with you. We need as many people as possible to show up.
  • DO remain on public property, i.e., the sidewalk.
  • DO use a flag and distribute leaflets – we'll provide them on site.
  • DO wear your Essential Pay button and t-shirt – we'll provide if you don't have.
  • DO consider wearing a mask when closer than six feet from others.
  • Do NOT rally on BCLDB property.
  • Do NOT block traffic going in or coming out of the building.
  • Do NOT block pedestrians from safely navigating the sidewalk.
  • Do NOT bring signs – signs could make our rally look like a picket, which it is not (and would be illegal).

Please RSVP, and ask questions, by responding to this email.
In solidarity,

Erica Cardarelli and Matthew Robinson
Component 5 Campaigns Committee Co-chairs