Dean Purdy - Statement on passing of VIRCC member - BCGEU

Dear fellow Component 1 members,

I'm sure you have heard about the tragic death on the job of one of our fellow BCGEU Component 1 brothers at the Vancouver Island Regional Correctional Centre (VIRCC) .

On behalf of our component's leadership, I want to share my condolences and sympathies with all of those affected by his passing, both at the VIRCC – where I too work – and around the B.C. Corrections and Sheriffs community.

Over the last few days, I – along with component executive members Brandon Cox and Luke Poelzer and staff representatives from our union's occupational health and safety and field services departments – have been on-site at VIRCC working with the Public Service Agency and the BC Corrections Branch to ensure that the occupational health and safety investigation is conducted thoroughly and that members and other staff at the facility have the necessary support and counselling available.

Over the coming weeks, we will continue to ensure that the investigation into his passing will be thorough and respectful of any privacy concerns. I will provide continued updates as relevant information becomes available.

Each and every one of us in our field works tirelessly to ensure that our colleagues return from work safely to our homes and families, and this incident is a somber reminder of just how important it is that we do so.

I also wish each one of you a happy Thanksgiving and encourage you to keep our fallen brother's family – both at home and at work – in your thoughts this weekend.

In solidarity,


Dean Purdy

BCGEU Vice President for Component 1 – Corrections and Sheriff Services