Click here to find info on COVID-19


June 14, 2017

Chronic failure by PHSA to protect staff at Forensic Psychiatric Hospital lea...

A violent incident at Forensic Psychiatric Hospital (FPH) in Coquitlam put another staff member in harm's way yesterday afternoon because of the ongoing failure of the Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA) to adequately resource and protect workers at the facility.


Following his release from long-time seclusion, a patient assaulted a staff member whose colleagues were unable to immediately restrain the patient because access was blocked by locked doors – prolonging the assault. The severity of the injury prompted the submission of a report to the Workers' Compensation Board (WCB).


The Forensic Psychiatric Hospital houses up to 190 patients who have been deemed either unfit to serve trial or criminally not responsible for their crimes due to mental illness. Yet despite the often precarious state of many patients, neither health care workers nor security officers are provided with the resources or protections necessary to manage frequent violent outbursts.


"For months we have been urging the PHSA to provide suitable protections for staff on par with similar hospitals across Canada such as body armour, blocking pads, and meal pass-through doors for those in seclusion" says BC Government & Service Employees' Union (BCGEU) president Stephanie Smith. "It is unacceptable to continue allowing health care workers to be exposed to potentially violent patients without such protections."


The BCGEU's 50th Constitutional Convention is currently underway in Vancouver where issues of occupational health and safety, including violence in the workplace, will be reviewed. Smith is also scheduled to attend the next PHSA board meeting to speak on behalf of members in calling for improved onsite safety measures at the hospital.


FPH has been issued 54 Workers' Compensation Board safety orders and 102 WCB inspection reports have been filed in the last five years, mostly resulting from the employer's failure to protect workers from violence. A $171,000 fine was issued by the WCB in the fall of 2016 for extremely dangerous conditions at the facility, yet the violence continues.


The BCGEU represents over 270 members at Forensic Psychiatric Hospital, including 130 health care workers, 15 forensic security officers (FSO), 25 dietary staff, 7 social workers and 27 administrative staff.


The next PHSA board meeting will be held June 29, 2017, 10:30 am to 12:30 pm in Vancouver.



For more information contact: Bronwen Barnett, BCGEU Communications | e: [email protected] | c: 604-719-4713

June 07, 2017

National Aboriginal Day - June 21st - BCGEU

The BCGEU Area 01

Cross Component Committee

 Invites all BCGEU members and their families to participate in the

 National Aboriginal Day - June 21st


A number of events are being hosted in Victoria commencing June 10th.

Members are encouraged to review, and in some cases register to attend.


June 10th – Victoria Native Friendship Centre Library

& The Greater Victoria Public Library - Mungo Martin House at the Royal British Columbia Museum for 60 to 65 people – and lunch and 3 hour program.

Experiential workshop to gain deeper insight into the impact of residential schools and explore how each of us can help revive the values that guided Indigenous villages for generations. Contact Barbara Strachan, NVFC Library Volunteer @ 250-384-3211 Ext 2292 for more details



June 16th to June 18th – Aboriginal Cultural Festival 2017 – Royal BC Museum, Victoria in Partnership with Aboriginal Tourism BC - 675 Belleville St commencing at 10:30 am on June 16th with a ceremonial welcome canoe paddle to Victoria's Inner Harbour and a parade of Nations. Events happen outside the Royal Museum.


This year's program features more than 100 performers from across BC and around the world. Champion hoop dancer Alex Wells and Maori performing arts group He Waka Kotuna. Smudge ceremony with Frank Antoine, Indigenous Arts Marketplace, educational tour centered on the history of totems. Fry-bread, BBQ salmon, West Coast Clam Chowder from the Songhees Sea-food & stream food truck.


June 21st – Victoria Native Friendship Health Fair, 231 Regina Ave – 10 am – 4pm


Artist's market, drumming and dancing, traditional crafts for the family, traditional games, information booths, bouncy castle, face painting, photo booth, relay race, human foosball, balloon artist and fish Pond. Saanich Police presents ACE the dog and Bike Patrol, lunch will be provided. Contact Kim Rumley for more information: [email protected] (250-384-3211)


June 21st – Royal Roads University – The Blue Heron House – commences at 10:00 am ceremony at 10:30 with Canoe challenges involving FN's. Colleges and Universities.


June 21st – West Shore Parks and Recreation – 1767 Island Highway, Lower Level near the Picnic Shelter & Playground – 3rd Annual west shore aboriginal Day Festival is a celebration for everyone on the West Shore. Traditional signing, drumming, dancing, Indigenous foods and fun activities. For more info call 250-391-9924


In solidarity

Susanne Francoeur,


Area 01 Cross Component Chairperson



Download as pdf

June 07, 2017

BCGEU starts construction on new office in Terrace - BCGEU


The B.C. Government and Service Employees' Union (BCGEU) held a groundbreaking ceremony on Tuesday to begin construction on their new office in Terrace. The new building will replace the existing office building and will serve over 2,100 members from across northwest B.C. Over 1,400 of BCGEU members in northwest B.C. live within a two-hour drive of the new office, making this office a key hub for union members in the region. 


Read full article here…

June 05, 2017

BCGEU commends extended apology from head of the B.C. Public Service on 2012 ...

The BC Government & Service Employees' Union (BCGEU) commends last week's extended apology from Deputy Minister to the Premier and head of the B.C. Public Service Kim Henderson to those affected by the terminations of Ministry of Health employees in 2012.

In the April 2017 report Misfire: The 2012 Ministry of Health Employment Terminations and Related Matters, the B.C. Ombudsperson documented in great detail the failures identified in the Ministry of Health terminations and made important recommendations to address these failures.

The BCGEU welcomed these recommendations and looks forward to a continued discussion aimed at addressing individual as well as systemic issues that will increase fairness for workers and improve public administration. This includes recommendations to review standards of conduct for public service employees to assist in assessing conflicts of interest, improve standards for human resource investigations, and update the Public Service Act.

In support of Justice Cromwell's work to develop a reparation process, the BCGEU has begun working with the Ministry of Health to develop and implement an organizational reconciliation program as recommended by the B.C. Ombudsperson. This program will address initiatives to support employee morale and engagement in the Ministry.


The BCGEU has retained legal counsel to protect the interests of Ramsay Hamdi, David Scott and Linda Kayfish (on behalf of Roderick MacIsaac), as well as all affected unionized employees. This will ensure that the implementation of the recommendations related to individuals named in the Ombudsperson's report are handled in a fair and expeditious manner.


Local 467/MoveUP

June 02, 2017

Vancouver Talmud Torah Teachers Association joins BCGEU - BCGEU

Today the BC Government & Service Employees' Union (BCGEU) welcomes 47 teachers into its membership from the Vancouver Talmud Torah School, one of the largest Jewish Schools in Western Canada. The Vancouver Talmud Torah Teachers Association (VTTTA) voted to merge with the BCGEU in order to secure a more stable labour relations environment and increase leverage in negotiations with the employer.


"Through the strength of a large union, members of the VTTTA will now have the opportunity to bargain an improved agreement and have a stronger voice in the workplace through their new union's representation" says BCGEU president Stephanie Smith.


The BCGEU is one of the largest and most diverse unions in British Columbia with over 73,000 members.



For more information please call Bronwen Barnett, BCGEU Communications, 604-719-4713.

June 02, 2017


The B.C. Government and Service Employees' Union requires a temporary Web Developer to work in the IT Services section of the Administration Department, effective date to be determined. The term of assignment is for six months.



Website Development – Plan, develop and create websites to achieve the goals of the Union; work with development team to deliver state of the art websites that tie in with all the backend database systems; deliver mobile web interfaces; design and implement databases; conduct tests and perform security and quality controls; cross browser and OS compatibility testing; create and maintain software documentation; be responsible for maintaining, expanding, and scaling our websites.



Extensive understanding, knowledge and experience with HTML 5, CSS3, Javascript, JQUERY, GIT; have a strong understanding of PHP back-end development; knowledge of PHP frameworks (CodeIgniter, Symfony, Yii, Zend, etc); knowledge of how to interact with RESTful APIs and formats (JSON, XML); knowledge of responsive web design implementation; experienced in developing for Nation Builder, WordPress and Drupal is an asset; have strong knowledge of current and emerging UX/UI standards for mobile and web applications.


Ability to:

· breakdown complex problems and develop a software solution from system design to implementation;

· communicate well verbally and in writing;

· possess good time management skills;

· work in a team environment;

· accept constructive feedback;

· learn new languages and tools.


Experience with Ruby on Rails, Liquid Template Language (Part of Ruby), and SASS (CSS3 extension) is a plus.


The BCGEU supports employment equity. Workers of colour, women, aboriginal workers, LGBTQ+ and workers with disabilities are encouraged to apply for positions with the BCGEU.


Travel is required; therefore, applicants must hold a valid B.C. Driver's Licence.


Submit applications no later than 5:00 p.m., June 9, 2017:


Resumes will be accepted by e-mail to: [email protected]

Attention to: Stephanie Smith, President, c/o Lisa Trolland



We regret that we will only be responding to those candidates selected for an interview. Thank you for your interest in the BCGEU.

Download as pdf

May 31, 2017

British Columbia’s Fastest Growing Union Breaks Ground for New Office in Terr...

The B.C. Government and Service Employees’ Union (BCGEU) hosted a groundbreaking ceremony on Tuesday to begin construction on their new office in Terrace B.C. 

The new building will replace the existing office building and will serve over 2,100 members from across northwest B.C. Over 1,400 of BCGEU members in Northwest B.C. live within a two hour drive of the new office, making this office a key hub for union members in the region. 

In Terrace alone, there are 637 union members that will enjoy access to the new office. 

“Upgrading our facilities is part of a wider effort to better serve members in communities across the Northwest.” said Stephanie Smith, President of the BCGEU. “this is part of our ongoing commitment to members in the Northwest to provide the highest levels of service and to strengthen our presence in the communities they live and work in.”

The groundbreaking ceremony was held at the future site of the new building at 4602 Lazelle Avenue.

BCGEU President Stephanie Smith and Treasurer Paul Finch were joined at the ceremony and reception by local union members, the designers and architects of the new building, and Terrace Deputy Mayor Brian Downie. 

The ceremony was followed by a reception at the existing BCGEU office in downtown Terrace. It was an opportunity for members across the region to connect with BCGEU President Stephanie Smith and Treasurer Paul Finch and talk about the opportunities the new office can bring to the region. 

Building Information

The new 4,600ft2 office will boast the latest in sustainable materials and construction practices. The design includes a high efficiency heating and cooling system, recycled flooring materials, low VOC sealants and adhesives, low E glazing, low flush toilets and automated faucets. 

Recognizing the importance of accessibility and good health, the building will exceed all the minimum requirements for access, circulation and washrooms. Most interior spaces will also have daylight views to improve the work environment. 

“Our goal is to serve and represent members in the region.” said Paul Finch, Treasurer of the BCGEU. “To do this properly, we need state-of-the-art facilities that are accessible to all, welcoming, and add value to local communities.”

The building is expected to be completed by the fall of 2018. 

Photos of the ceremony and the reception can be found at the BCGEU Flickr page at: 

For more information and interviews contact Bronwen Barnett at 604-473-5424.

May 31, 2017

Courses for Labour Code OHS Committee Members in the Williams Lake Area - BCGEU

"Joint OHS Committee Training" will be held on Tuesday, July 11, 2017 and "Incident Investigations" will be held on Wednesday, July 12, 2017. These courses will be held at the BCGEU office at 107A North First Avenue, Williams Lake from 9:00 am - 4:30 pm.

In the Joint OHS Committee Training course you will learn:

  • Worker OHS rights, including the refusal of unsafe work procedure
  • OHS legislation
  • Roles and responsibilities of employers, workers, supervisors and committees
  • Hazard identification and control measures
  • How to conduct effective workplace inspections and incident investigations
  • Resources available to the committee

In the Incident Investigations you will learn:

  • The legislative requirements for conducting accident/incident investigations
  • How to get to the contributing factors by conducting effective witness interviews and examining physical evidence
  • How to assess the evidence in order to recommend effective corrective measures

These courses are limited to 22 seats so register early at: to avoid disappointment.

Don't miss out on this opportunity to improve your ability to advocate for workers' health and safety rights - register today.

Note: If you have not taken your annual education leave, as mandated by the Workers' Compensation Act and your Collective Agreement - apply for this employer paid leave through your employer.



May 31, 2017

BCGEU congratulates BC Greens and BC NDP on historic agreement - BCGEU


We welcome yesterday’s historic agreement between the BC NDP caucus and BC Green caucus.
“Three weeks after B.C. went to the polls we now finally have a clearer idea of what the next government’s priorities are going to be going forward.” said Stephanie Smith, BCGEU President. “The Green and NDP Confidence and Supply Agreement sets the stage for four years of stable government that is founded on transparency, collaboration and is rooted in the spirit of Reconciliation and the UN Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.”
The agreement, a first of its kind in B.C. politics outlines a collaborative and open framework for decision making between two parties that together earned over 56% of the vote in the 2017 election. The BCGEU welcomes this approach, and is hopeful that through this framework major progress will be achieved on issues that BCGEU members have long been advocating for.
For years BCGEU members have been calling on the government to take decisive action on climate change, to implement a poverty reduction strategy, to strengthen the rights of workers and their safety on the job. Members have written, phoned, and talked to their elected representatives about improving home care for seniors, about investing in early childhood education and childcare, calling for a $15 per hour minimum wage, and investment in quality public transit. It is through their hard work and efforts that many of these issues became central to the political discourse, and ultimately found their way into this agreement.
On the whole, there is a lot in this agreement for working people to be hopeful about: a strong commitment to a revitalized forestry sector, a new credible Environmental Assessment process centered on safety and sustainability, investment in child protection and hiring more social workers, as well as funding Adult Basic Education and English as a Second Language programs.
Smith noted that “It is encouraging to see strong agreement on so many important issues ahead of a new budget. In particular, the commitment on mental health supports stands out as important. This commitment elevates strategies that recognize the urgency around the opioid crisis, which we know is having a devastating effect on workers and the communities in which they live.”
If the NDP and Greens can work together over the next four years to deliver on the promises outlined in this document, it will be a major step forward for a British Columbia that lifts up all people, that provides a transparent and accountable government, and that protects our environment for future generations.
The BCGEU looks forward to the opportunity of meeting with MLAs of all parties once the legislature is recalled to discuss the timely implementation of these policies, and to offer the input of the more than 73, 000 BCGEU members who live, work, and vote in British Columbia.