COVID-19 Update for March 31, 2020

Good Evening Members,

As part of our daily communications to keep you informed during this COVID-19 pandemic we thought, with advice from our National Servicing Rep., it was important to share with you what we do know regarding the workflow and expectations in the next couple of days, weeks, and or months……

Under the B.C. Provincial Emergency Program Act the redeployment of workers will happen in order to take care of our communities, and as public employees, the Union (CUPE 411) does not have a choice to agree or disagree at this time.  The redeployment of any of our members is only during this crisis and this is done on a whole without prejudice or precedent, as confirmed by the Public Sector Employer’s Council; the Council governs public employees under the provincial government.

Some of the questions we have been asked by members are;

Can I say “No” to being redeployed?

  • “Yes” you can but you may not be paid? It is important to note that failure to not show up to work may result in not receiving any E.I or government assistance.

What if I am not experience, qualified, or capable? 

  • It is the Employer’s responsibility to provide adequate training for any and all work that you are being asked to perform.
  • If you require a license, certification, or some other legal requirement to perform the work; then make it know you do not possess these.
  • If you are not capable (i.e. have a medical condition) then you can indicate you have a medical condition that prohibits you from performing the work (do not disclose the condition) and ask if there is any other work that you can do.

Why am I being asked to work outside the scope of my job description?

  • It has come to this because of the health crisis we are in here in B.C. and the province has entered into the Emergency Act.

Why is the School District still operating?

  • The Employer has been tasked to continue to work to support the communities. This directive comes from BCPSEA, PSEC, and the Provincial Government.

Are we expected to work until June 26, 2020 and if I cannot work will I continue to get paid until then?

  • The government has secured payment until April 30, 2020, but they are expecting to see some work out of all school district employees; this is not going to be a free ride.
  • For those members who are unable to come into the work sites due to pre-existing medical conditions, or live with someone who is vulnerable, and there is not work for them to perform at home we are unclear at this time how they are going to be financially compensated (i.e. Employer Pays or E.I.)?

Please know that your Union Executive, have and will continue to work tirelessly in advocating in your best interest and ensuring that your health and safety is the primary consideration during this pandemic.

In Solidarity,

CUPE 411 Executive