BC FED – Not normal, better!

Not normal, better!

As BC begins to relaunch our economy, a lot of us are asking: why just go back to the old normal? Why not build something better?

There will always be voices calling on BC to go backwards – looking to slash public services, cancel the minimum wage increase and seek economic recovery at the expense of working people.

The voices of working people are powerful and crucial. We’d like your input on the next steps we should call on government to take in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. 

This pandemic has exposed major gaps in everything from workplace safety to social supports. And it’s also shown us government can do a lot to make life better for working people and all of us in BC.

We’ve put together some of the best ideas we’ve heard for making our province a better, fairer place. Changes that will make our province more equal and ensure everyone prospers, through strengthening worker rights, tackling climate change and embracing reconciliation with Indigenous peoples.

You can read these ideas in our vision for a post-pandemic BC – Rebuilding Our Economy for All.

Now’s the time to set out our priorities for a more resilient BC. Here are some of the improvements we’ve suggested making – tell us what’s most important to you.

We can’t cut and slash our way back to prosperity. If we don’t stand up, the road ahead just leads to a handful of wealthy people getting richer while the rest of us make do with less.

Give us your input now. It’s easy. Go to https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/BCFEDeconomicrecovery

Thank you for sharing your views,


Laird Cronk
President, BC Federation of Labour


Read more about our vision for an economic recovery that works for everyone at Rebuilding Our Economy for All.

-=-=-BC Federation of Labour · 200 5118 Joyce St, Vancouver, BC V5R 4H1, Canada
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CLC – This is violence against women

This is violence against women

Many of us are still in shock over the horrific tragedy that shattered Nova Scotia.

Twenty-two people lost their lives at the hands of a gunman. It was the deadliest massacre in Canadian history.

We now know that the killer began his shooting spree by assaulting his intimate partner. This type of violence isn’t rare in Canada. In 2019, a woman or girl was killed every three days in this country.

The federal government promised a plan to address violence against women. It hasn’t happened and that’s unacceptable.

Canada needs a National Action Plan on Violence Against Women and Girls – now. Write to Minister Monsef and urge her to take action.


Canada’s labour movement recently won paid domestic violence leave across the country. We couldn’t have done it without you.

We now must go further. It’s time to put an end to violence against women.

Thank you for being there for each other.

Marie Clarke Walker
Secretary-Treasurer, Canadian Labour Congress
Standing up for workers and their families

Canadian Labour Congress
Congrès du travail du Canada

2841 promenade Riverside Dr,
Ottawa, ON K1V 8X7

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IAMAW Canada – The Wage Subsidy Program: Canadian Workers’ Lifeline – Not to be taken away

The Wage Subsidy Program: Canadian Workers’ Lifeline – Not to be taken away


9,000 air transportation workers and IAM members are calling on you as their legislative representative to ensure employers across Canada maintain a critical lifeline for these workers, the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) program. This is not just a plea to help workers, this is about economic stability and health of the Canadian economy for years to come. Decisions made now will impact generations of Canadians and determine the fate of an industry of a national and strategic importance, air transportation.

Any measures that can be taken to mitigate and support workers at this unprecedented time, one that is even being called a larger disaster than the Great Depression, must be taken swiftly. Employers need to treat IAM members in a dignified manner; after all, these workers are at the heart of many businesses and global reputations of Canadian companies.

With over 50,000 members across Canada, the IAMAW is requesting that employers participate in the CEWS program. The Union will work to ensure this valuable benefit continues to be available for IAMAW members during these turbulent times.

Workers are always bear the brunt of economic downturns and disasters with a great cost to their lives.

We’re calling on you to right this wrong by adding your name to demand employers maintain their employees on the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) program.


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IAMAW Canada – Universal Basic Income: The Magic Bullet for a Struggling EI Program?

Universal Basic Income: The Magic Bullet for a Struggling EI Program?

The economic devastation, and mass unemployment as a result of the pandemic, has highlighted the inadequacies of current policies, programs and legislation. The Employment Insurance program has shown to be especially inadequate in addressing the needs of those who have lost jobs, permanently or temporarily. Only about 39% of applicants are eligible for EI, a number which is even lower for women.

In response to the crisis, and in order to stabilize the economy, the federal government introduced the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit (CERB), which provides a flat amount of $ 2,000 on a monthly basis. CERB is unique in that it’s not income-tested, and parameters of eligibility are broad. Given the uncertainty over how long the crisis will last, and how quickly CERB became available, the idea of universal basic income (UBI) as public policy has garnered some attention.

The Broadbent Institute hosted a session addressing public policy models that address crises, but also issues of equity, fairness and justice. What came across clearly is that UBI is a loosely defined concept, without clear guidelines on how it is administered, who pays for it, eligibility and the objective it aims to reach. Those on the political left would use UBI to address inequality, while those on the far right would see it is a vehicle to reduce reliance on the state and promote the provision of goods and services through the market. As a tool it seems to be blunt, and potentially disastrous, depending on who administers the tool.

Economist Armine Yalnizan stressed that we are in an era of reduced economic growth, declining wages, and inflation, which is coupled with a relatively small working-age population when compared to those who are not working. In other words, the tax base is small and burdened. Yalnizan cautioned against UBI given that it doesn’t “raise the floor”, rather, it would disadvantage those with fewer resources, so the issue of equity and fairness would not be addressed. As Yalnizan stated, “basic income isn’t the magic bullet for dignity.”

Yalnizan pointed out that among G-7 partners, Canada has the highest rate of utilization of low-paid workers, stressing that the focus of the attack on working people shouldn’t be lost once the pandemic ends. Now is the time to renew calls for decent jobs, quality of work, and living wages. It is also the time to commodify work that’s traditionally not been commodified and valued, such as women’s work, which is valued to be at $ 10 trillion annually.

Furthermore, tiered income systems, as employment insurance used to be in the 1940s were meant to reduce the impact of an economic downturn and maximize purchasing power, while also automatically stabilizing the economy. Under the current EI system, only 39% of those who apply are eligible, and only 32% of women.  As a measure, UBI and similar programs merely help people stay afloat during a tough time.

Yalnizan called on progressive, organizations and the movement as a whole to push for policies that re-distribute power and wealth, compress the wage distribution, through improvements to employment insurance, living wage policies, socializing care, affordable housing, access to healthcare,  and overall, supporting models that re-distribute wealth and power, as Medicare does.  It is imperative that public policy be fine-tuned to address discrepancies and systemic inequities that are especially evident in crisis situations. Now is a chance to prepare for catastrophes in a way that doesn’t disproportionately affect the most vulnerable.

By Ivana Saula
IAM Canadian Research Director


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BC NDP News – Entering a new phase

Entering a new phase

Building a #BetterBC
Entering a new phase

The people of British Columbia continue to be resilient, compassionate, and responsible as the province prepares for a careful restart that will protect people and the progress we’ve made.

May 19 marks the beginning of phase two, which will bring an easing of restrictions across many sectors – ranging from healthcare and child care to restaurants and pubs to libraries and parks to stores and hair salons.

Have a safe long weekend

As part of BC’s Restart Plan, many provincial parks reopened for day use on May 14. Now, with the long weekend beginning and folks looking forward to enjoying the great outdoors, remember the importance of protecting your health and the safety of others.

Your BC NDP government is advising against travel to other parts of BC. Instead, please enjoy the outdoor spaces in your own community, and remember to maintain physical distancing. And to spread awareness, please share this on Facebook.

Phasing school back in

Our teachers have done incredible work to keep kids learning in BC, but we know there’s no substitute for in-class instruction – especially for kids who need extra support.

British Columbians have worked hard to flatten the curve, and an important step towards recovery is getting kids safely back to school. That’s why Education Minister Rob Fleming has announced a plan to welcome kids back to classrooms – on an optional, part-time basis – starting June 1.

This will be welcome news for parents going back to work. Health-and-safety is our top priority for students and staff, and all schools will be following strict procedures including physical distancing.

Join the fun - online

In the spirit of bringing folks together while maintaining physical distancing, we’re launching a series of online events offering something to entertain and educate everyone. You’re invited to join the fun – you might even discover some of our MLAs’ hidden talents.

Upcoming events include: an origami demonstration from Bowinn Ma, MLA for North Vancouver-Lonsdale; a talent show with Nelson-Creston MLA Michelle Mungall; a butter chicken cooking class with Rachna Singh, MLA for Surrey-Green Timbers.

Thank you BC's nurses

The courage and dedication shown by British Columbia’s nurses during the COVID-19 pandemic has been truly extraordinary. On Tuesday, declaring May 11-17 Nursing Week in BC, Premier John Horgan gave his personal thanks to nurses across our province.

Premier Horgan: “COVID-19 has reminded us all of the selflessness, dedication, and leadership it takes to be a nurse. Thank you to BC’s nurses for moving heaven and earth to help people with COVID-19 and all the other medical needs that don’t stop during a pandemic.”

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See you again soon!

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New Democratic Party of British Columbia
#320 – 34 West 7th Ave
Vancouver, BC, V5Y 1L6

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