Legislative Updates Courtesy of CUPE BC

Minimum Wage Increased: On June 1, 2021, B.C.’s lowest paid workers received a pay boost, when the general minimum wage increased to $15.20 an hour and the lower discriminatory minimum wage for liquor servers ended. June 1 also marked the end of the discriminatory lower minimum wage for B.C. liquor servers.

Paid Sick Leave for Non-Union Workers Introduced: Employees working under the Employment Standards Act now have access to three days of paid sick leave related to COVID-19, such as having symptoms, self-isolating and waiting for a test result. Employers are now required to pay workers their full wages and the Province will reimburse employers without an existing sick leave program Up to $200 per day for each worker to cover costs. A permanent paid sick leave for workers who cannot work due to any illness or injury will be established beginning Jan. 1, 2022.

New Skilled Trades Certification System: A new skilled trades certification system is being developed by the provincial government. Following public consultation, implementation will start with ten initial trades from electrical, mechanical and automotive disciplines:

  • mechanical: gasfitter Class A and B, steamfitter/pipefitter, refrigeration and air conditioning mechanic and sheet metal worker;
  • electrical: powerline technician, industrial electrician and electrician (construction); and
  • automotive: heavy-duty equipment technician, automotive service technician and autobody and collision technician.

Once implemented, individuals in these ten trades will be required to either be a certified journeyperson or a registered apprentice to work. Government will also be working with industry to introduce journeyperson to apprentice ratios for each of these ten trades, as in every other province. B.C. was the only province not to require compulsory trades certification for skilled trades since it was eliminated in 2003.

Federal National Day for Truth and Reconciliation Statutory Holiday Created: A new statutory holiday was created for employees in the federal government and federally regulated workplaces. The National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, commemorating the tragic legacy of residential schools in Canada, will be recognized on September 30 each year.

Accessibility Legislation for a More Inclusive Province: The accessible British Columbia act will allow government to establish accessibility standards aimed at identifying, removing, and preventing barriers to accessibility and inclusion. Standards will be developed in a range of areas such as employment, the delivery of services and the built environment. Additionally, a $4.8-million grant from the Province will support employers to hire, rehire and retain people with disabilities for long-term successful employment.

New Childcare Legislation & Regulations: New child care legislation will allow the government to set limits on child care fees for parents. This will help ensure child care is more affordable for families. The new legislation will also allow more flexibility in providing trained ECEs throughout the province. A change to the regulations will also exempt school grounds from minimum requirements for the provision of childcare since schools are already designed to be safe for children.

Electoral Boundaries to Be Reviewed: The Province has amended the Electoral Boundaries Commission Act to provide the upcoming electoral boundaries commission with more independence and flexibility as it works to recommend an electoral map for the next two general elections. These amendments will ensure the location of political boundaries between seats is determined not by politicians, but by an independent commission.



Cupe BC News Updates


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CUPE BC Web Conference | Build Your Resilience | June 15

Please join CUPE BC’s Summer 2021 Web Conference led by Diana Vissers, Occupational Health Consultant and CEO of Work to Wellness.  In this webinar, Diana will introduce a framework for understanding mental health and wellness and share tools for managing the stress of the pandemic.

Build Your Resilience: Tools for Managing the Stress of COVID-19

Date:  June 15, 2021

Time:  9:30-11:00 am Pacific Time (90 minutes)

Presenter: Diana Vissers

Free Registration: Click here

Registration Deadline:  Monday, June 14, 2021 at 12:00 pm PST

Live captioning and translation in French will be provided.  Members of all affiliated and non-affiliated locals are welcome to attend.

2022 Election Training Workshop | So You Want to Run for Local Office | June 22

Are you considering running for Council, School Board, or Regional District Board in 2022 in your community? The CLC and the Winch Institute are hosting a 90-minute workshop for potential candidates, which will consist of a panel discussion with current and former councillors and trustees, regional breakout groups, and expert instruction. The workshop will be part of a series of campaign workshops and community forums in the lead up to the 2022 Local Government Elections. This workshop will focus on the reasons to run for public office, the work of elected officials, and what you need to start doing now in order to win in 2022.

So You Want to Run for Local Office?

Date: Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Time: 7:00 – 8:30 pm Pacific Time (90 minutes)

Application Form:  Click here

Organizer Contact:  Neil Gaudreault (e: neilgaudreault@gmail.com | p: 778-980-5670)

Canadian Heritage | National Indigenous Peoples Day | June 21

This June 21, 2021 is the national 25th anniversary of celebrating the heritage, cultures and outstanding achievements of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples. For more information on First Nations, Inuit and Métis-led virtual activities, please visit the Department of Canadian Heritage website (click here) and join the conversation via social media:

Twitter: @GCIndigenous and @GovCanNorth use the hashtag #NIHM2021

Facebook: GCIndigenousGovCanNorth and @GCIndigenousHealth

Instagram: @gcindigenous use the hashtag #NIHM2021


CLC Resources | Truth & Reconciliation | Solidarity with Indigenous Peoples

CUPE BC stands in solidarity with Indigenous peoples across the country who are mourning the loss of not only the 215 children found buried at the former site of the Kamloops Indian Residential School, but the thousands of other children who never came home. Please see the following information from the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) and BC Federation of Labour, which includes actions that union members can take in the wake of the recent news from the territory of the Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc People.

Write to your elected representatives

Let federal and provincial leaders and elected representatives know that you want to see real commitments and concrete action for justice for Indigenous people and communities.

Click here to send an electronic letter.

Learn more about Reconciliation

Many Canadians were shocked by the reports of this discovery in Kamloops, but Indigenous peoples weren’t, because they knew and they know there will be more. You can learn more about the findings of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission via the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation, but the best place to start is the 94 Calls to Action.

If you have yet to do so, please also take this opportunity to learn more about the long history of discrimination against First Nations children; read the Honouring the Truth, Reconciling for the Future Summary of the Final Report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada; and review the findings from the National Inquiry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls and the 230+ Calls for Justice in the Final Report of the National Inquiry.

Stay Informed

The Hon. Murray Sinclair chaired the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and delivered its final report and 94 Calls to Action.  He released a statement after the discovery in Kamloops, and he says there will be more.  Click here to watch Murray Sinclair’s Video Statement dated June 1, 2021.

To learn more about what the labour movement is doing provincially and nationally, please also read the following statements:

BCFED Statement – On the confirmation of mass grave of children at the site of the Kamloops Indian Residential School

CLC Statement – Canada’s unions mourn with Indigenous communities, call for action

Support Resources | Indian Residential School Survivors Society

If you or any members you know are suffering trauma from ongoing discussions online and in the media about the Kamloops Indian Residential School discovery, please contact the Indian Residential School Survivors Society 24 hour Crisis Line at 1-866-925-4419.  To learn more about the Indian Residential School Survivors Society and its support services, please click here.

Should you have any questions regarding this update, please email info@cupe.bc.ca for further information.



Fall 2021 Social Committee Events

Your social committee has been hard at work planning events for the fall, in anticipation of things opening up and getting back to normal. So far in the works are:

Welcome Back Family BBQ

September 11th – mid afternoon

Location TBD

Poker Night

October 16th

Location – Riverside Banquet Hall

Christmas/Retirement Party and Dinner/Dance

November 27th

Location – Riverside Banquet Hall

But they need your help planning! If you think you will attend – please fill out the form below so that we can plan accordingly. Looking forward to a more normal 2021-2022 School Year.

Build Your Resilience: Tools for Managing the Stress of COVID-19

Cupe BC has put together a learning opportunity for our members.

Build Your Resilience: Tools for Managing the Stress of COVID-19

Date:  Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Time:  9:30-11:00 am PST | 12:30-2:00 pm EST  (90 minutes)

Registration: Click here

Registration Deadline:  Monday, June 14, 2021 at 12:00 pm PST

Cost: FREE

The web conference will feature guest presenter Diana Vissers, Occupational Health Consultant and CEO of Work to Wellness. To learn more about Diana, please click here and see below.

This webinar will be recorder to view if you can’t make it during the day.


Dear members,

This message is to announce that CUPE BC is now accepting nominations online for all 21 committees for the 2021-2023 term. 


Please note that the 2022-2023 committee nomination process is slightly different than previous years. The nomination process has been revised to bring it into closer alignment with CUPE National processes. In addition, we are asking nominees (applicants) to submit their own nominations, which will allow us to capture information to help build more inclusive committees.


At this time, we are asking nominees to complete the form themselves (not nominators: Locals or District Councils) and to self-identify as members of any equity-seeking groups. If you are a nominator completing the form online on behalf of the nominee, please consult and obtain permission from the nominee prior to submitting the form.

Online Nomination Form: Click here

Submission Deadline:  Monday, July 5, 2021 (end of day)


Please click here to view the Terms of Reference for all 21 CUPE BC Committees.  Kindly note that certain CUPE BC Committees have specific appointment criteria, as outlined below:

Pensions Committee

Members are appointed by the Executive Board and should whenever possible include a retiree, a young worker and a non-municipal pension plan member.

Political Action Committee

All Committee members must maintain membership in the New Democratic Party throughout the term of the committee, failure to do so may result in the removal from the committee by a majority vote of the Executive Board.

Young Workers Committee

With the exception of the Chairperson appointed by the Executive Board, Members of the committee should be 30 years of age or younger.

Transportation Committee

A member shall be appointed by the Executive Board whenever possible from the airline sector.

Universities & Colleges Committees

Members of both the Colleges and/or Universities Committees must be Presidents of their CUPE Locals.  If you are a President of a CUPE Local at a BC Post-Secondary Institution, we still ask that you complete the online nomination form to ensure we have your current contact information.

Should you have any questions with regards to the CUPE BC Committee Call for Nominations, please contact the CUPE BC Office (info@cupe.bc.ca) for further assistance.

In Solidarity,

CUPEBC Division

Education Request Form

Are you interested in taking a CUPE sponsored educational course?

We would appreciate it if you could fill out the applicable sections of this form and return by scanning your completed application and attaching it to an email. Address it to the CUPE office at cupe716office@gmail.com. 

Your application will be forwarded to the Education Committee. You may otherwise wish to return your application by interschool mail. If you choose to send it via interschool mail, please be sure to send it as early in advance of the deadline as possible.

Address it to CUPE Office, Sea Island School or complete the online form below.

Presidents Report – May 2021

Dear Members,

I am writing today to update you on where we stand in the Budget process for next year.  We have met multiple times with Richmond’s MLA’s to discuss the shortfall and funding levels, however despite this lobbying they have declined. They based their decision on the fact the District has a 9.8 million dollar surplus. We understand that there needs to be some surplus maintained for unexpected situations, but strongly believe that this is the time to spend more of it.  Like we have said many times, it is a rainy day, it is time to spend the rainy day fund. Thank you to Trustee Richard Lee for advocating for the Trustees to spend more of the surplus so that our members can continue to work to support the students of SD 38. Unfortunately he was not supported by the other Trustees but we appreciate his advocacy. The budget was passed and Trustee Lee was the only one to vote no. 

I am still taken aback by the fact the district wasn’t interested in being more creative in looking at other areas to balance the budget. I am sure we all know of ways the district could save money other than cutting our jobs. But they chose not to. 

We are also trying to work with the employer on the Educational Assistant downsizing. Your Union believes any downsizing, regardless of the FTE allocation, should be done by seniority. The employer disagrees. We have filed a grievance on this.

We now have to support our members who will lose their jobs. I can’t imagine the stress and anxiety they have been experiencing waiting for the budget to pass. Now that it has, the reality is setting in, they are really going to lose their jobs. I ask you to join me in saying we are here for you and will do everything we can to support you moving forward. If there ever was a time for solidarity – it is now.

In Solidarity

Ian Hillman

Cupe 716 President