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CEU Women and Gender Rights Committee

A couple months ago the CEU reached out to members announcing that the dormant CEU’s Women’s Committee was being revitalized. Since that announcement the Committee has been renamed the CEU’s Women and Gender Rights Committee (WGRC) to reflect the inclusiveness and interests of this committee.

The motive for getting the CEU’s Women and Gender Rights Committee going again is to support, and to give a voice to those who are facing the persistent issues that affect gender rights in and out of the workplace, issues which have only been highlighted by this pandemic.

The CEU’s WGRC met mid September to talk about gender inequalities, issues to investigate and report on and to discuss the Terms of Reference for the Committee. The issues discussed at the September meeting focused on domestic violence and childcare and ideas were exchanged on how the Committee may best support Union members in these areas.

The Committee is researching and reading about how other Women and Gender Rights Committees support their members and ask for your answer to the question “What are the issues and concerns you would like to explore?

You can email your suggestions to or reach out to one of the WGRC members:

Laura Snow, CEU President

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Notice of Elections

An election to fill four (4) Members At Large positions on the CEU Negotiation Committee will be held in October 2021.

An election to fill the CEU Table Officer positions – one (1) President; one (1) Vice President; one (1) Treasurer; and one (1) Secretary – on the CEU Executive Committee will be held in October 2021.

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Labour Day 2021

Though the pandemic has impacted the ability of unions, activists, groups, and organizations to gather in celebration of workers’ rights, a coalition of labour organizations continue to campaign to advance the rights of Canadian workers.

Currently, the focus of today’s labour movement is including Long Term Care (LTC) in the public health care system, implementing 10 days of paid sick leave for all workers, concrete action for justice for Indigenous people and communities, and programs that help people keep working, like a national Pharmacare program and $10/day childcare. The CEU supports these campaigns as we recognize the importance of social programs that help all Canadian workers.

The CEU has a voice within the greater labour movement through our affiliation with BCGEU which links us to the BC Federation of Labour (BCFed), the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC), and of course, our national union, National Union of Public and Government Employees, NUPGE. This allows us to contribute and help build and improve the lives of workers not only employed at WCB but throughout the Province. 

Affiliation also gives the CEU a strategic advantage to reach organized labour on issues that are important to our membership. Your elected Executive participates on many committees at the BCGEU and BC Federation of Labour tables, amplifying our voice in the advancement of workers’ rights. The list of Joint Committees the CEU participates on is available in the Document Library in the Member’s Area of the CEU website.

This Labour Day celebrate all that workers and unions have achieved over the years. Appreciate how your hard work has contributed to the greater good of your community and country and to acknowledge the important role the Compensation Employees’ Union has played in ensuring your rights are upheld and continue to be advanced.

Enjoy your day of leisure!

Laura Snow, CEU President

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Who Pays for the leave of elected CEU Representatives – Employer or Union?

Elected CEU Representatives (Stewards and Executive Members) are paid by either the Employer or the Union when they take time off work to perform Union-related duties.

There are four Paid Leave categories, each with their own situations when the leave is considered Union-related.

The Paid Leave categories are:

  1. Union Employer-Paid Leave (“UEP”).
  2. Union Paid Leave (“UUP”).
  3. Joint Committee Union Work (“UCP”), and,
  4. President’s Salary

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The New Minimum Wage Increase Still Does Not Provide a Living Wage For All Workers in B.C.

The minimum wage increase will help women and racialized workers who disproportionately work in low-wage sectors like the service and agricultural industries. Many of these low wage sectors were in the spotlight during the pandemic and it became clear how undervalued certain workers have been. As B.C. Federation of Labour (BCFED) President Laird Cronk stated, “Minimum wage workers, many working on the frontlines through COVID, make the profits for businesses and they deserve a dignified wage.”

Advocating for a living wage on behalf of all B.C. workers is the Living Wage for Families Campaign, a program that fights for equitable wages, encourages employers to pay a living wage and advocates for government policies that would help families make ends meet. Another initiative supporting living wages is the Fair Wages Commission which was established to advise the government on how to raise minimum wages with increases that are regular, measured, and predictable. To that end, the Fair Wages Commission has gathered input on closing the gap between living wages and the minimum wage in B.C. and is now compiling its report.

The Living Wages for Families Campaign calls on the government to execute the recommendations made by the Fair Wages Commission a call echoed by the BC Federation of Labour (BCFED) President Laird Cronk. The BCFED encourages the Fair Wages Commission to continue working with the government to develop plans to realize minimum wages that are living wages for all workers.

The Union has negotiated your right to be paid equitable wages which increase regularly, as per the current Collective Agreement and takes every bargaining opportunity to advance and maintain those rights. The Union believes in equitable wages for all British Columbians and support this belief by doing business with other organizations that share this view.

For example, the CEU has selected to bank with a financial institute that is certified as a Living Wage Employer that has implemented other sustainable practices. Also, to ensure your dues are invested ethically and responsibly, the Union hires a not-for-profit organization called S.H.A.R.E. to scrutinize Union investments ensuring they are invested in businesses that have ethical policies in place, such as paying a living wage to their employees and major contractors.

CEU President, Laura Snow, comments that the Union supports living wages for all B.C. workers and endorses campaigns and organizations with this goal in mind. The fight for a living wage aligns with the CEU’s values of Equity, Compassion, Respect, and Integrity and supports the view that paying living wages contributes to strong local economies, sustainable cities, and healthy neighbourhoods.

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