VANCOUVER – The BC Government & Service Employees' Union (BCGEU) congratulates Laird Cronk and Sussanne Skidmore on their election today as the new president and secretary-treasurer of the BC Federation of Labour (BC Fed) at the federation's 58th convention.
Cronk and Skidmore bring extensive experience from both the private and public sectors of the labour movement to their roles. And as a representative of the public service, Skidmore's leadership will emphasize the need to strengthen B.C.'s public service at a time when the provincial government is already making strides in this direction. The pair have also committed to leading a unified labour movement by turning the page on past divisions.
"Two deeply committed labour activists with complementary experience, Laird and Sussanne will make a truly excellent team," says BCGEU president Stephanie Smith. "This news is bitter-sweet for the BCGEU family as Sussanne moves on from her position as one of our union's executive vice presidents, but we wish her every success and look forward to Laird and Sussanne's leadership in advancing the labour movement in B.C."
A BCGEU member for more than 20 years, Skidmore has served in nearly every elected position in her union local, from steward to executive, and has been a BCGEU executive vice president since 2014. A well-known social justice activist and labour leader, Skidmore has served as a member of the equity and human rights committee and the BCGEU women's committee where she has been a voice for fairness and equality within the labour movement. She has also sat on both the provincial public service bargaining and component bargaining committees.
"It's with much gratitude to the BCGEU for the opportunities and experiences I have gained that I look forward to the new challenges ahead in my role at the BC Fed," says outgoing BCGEU executive vice president and secretary-treasurer-elect of the BC Federation of Labour, Sussanne Skidmore.
As the largest affiliate union of the BC Fed, members and staff of the BCGEU thank both Irene Lanzinger and Aaron Ekman for their dedication to making life better for all working people in British Columbia during their time leading the federation. Ekman was elected secretary-treasurer in 2014 and Lanzinger was first elected secretary-treasurer in 2010 and then president in 2014.
"As the first woman president of the BC Fed, Irene redefined what is possible for all women leaders in B.C.'s labour movement," says Smith.
The BCGEU is one of the largest unions in B.C. with over 77,000 members and is an affiliate of the BC Federation of Labour, which represents over 500,000 members from unions across the province.
For more information contact Bronwen Barnett, BCGEU Communications, 604-719-4713