COVID-19 Member Update for May 7, 2020

Good Evening Members,

Yesterday B.C.’s Premier, John Horgan, addressed the residents of this province with an update on the governments plans to ease public health measures, while Health Minister Adrian Dix and Dr. Bonnie Henry B.C.’s Provincial Health Officer provided their update for today.

Many members have been reaching out with concerns about being directed to return to the workplace despite having pre-existing medical conditions and agreed upon arrangements to work from home, or face having to use their benefit entitlements (i.e. Sick, Vacation, O.T.) or take a leave without pay.  If this has been your experience your Union wants to hear from you.

If members are experiencing situations where physical distancing is not being adhered to, or other safety protocols are not being followed at your worksite then your Union wants to hear from you.

The Union fully expects that Joint Occupational Health and Safety committee meetings are taking place and that all concerns regarding member safety are being addressed.  If you have any questions or concerns regarding the reintroduction of more staff and students into the worksites that are not being addressed your Union wants to hear from you.

If members have been or are being directed to go home because of suspected coronavirus symptoms, or have been mandated to self-isolate due to possible exposure to COVID-19 then your Union wants to hear from you.

Your Union has been in regular discussions with our Employer and have provided numerous suggestions on how to keep members doing meaningful work as well as the possibility of being re-deployed to fill in the gaps and provide supports at various sites around the district where the need is required.  If you are not being provided such opportunities then your Union wants to hear from you.

With restrictions slowly being lifted your Union is optimistic that the government will come out with some formal guidelines and expectations for all sectors of the workforce, especially K-12, as it has become evident to us that the past several weeks have created massive inequities in the workplace.  However, we remain resilient and strong in the face of adversity and forever optimistic that those among us with any integrity will continue to provide compassionate, supportive and unbiased leadership during this crisis and beyond.

In Solidarity,

CUPE 411 Executive