The BC Government and Service Employees’ Union (BCGEU) recently reached a new collective agreement for its members that will run from April 1, 2019 to March 31, 2022.
The BCGEU represents over 80,000 workers in British Columbia, including government employees, social service workers, and liquor store employees. The new agreement includes a 6.5% wage increase over the next three years, as well as improved vacation and parental leave benefits.
One of the key provisions in the agreement is the creation of a new job category for community health workers. This will give these employees better job security and a clearer career path, which is important considering the high turnover rate in the field.
The agreement also includes a commitment to address workload issues for child protection workers, who have been struggling with excessive caseloads and high stress levels. The BCGEU and the government will work together to find solutions to these issues, which will ultimately improve outcomes for children and families.
Another important aspect of the agreement is a commitment to improve workplace safety. This includes the creation of joint occupational health and safety committees in all workplaces, as well as new training programs for workers.
The BCGEU and the government also agreed to work together on a number of initiatives to improve the quality of public services, including expanding access to mental health and addiction services, increasing support for people with disabilities, and improving the quality of care for seniors in long-term care facilities.
Overall, the BCGEU’s new agreement is a significant step forward for workers in British Columbia. It provides important improvements in wages and benefits, job security, and workplace safety, while also recognizing the crucial role that public services play in our communities.