Visits to the branches by Peter and the Bargaining Cttee, Bicycle Pickets, and more

Notes from Peter:

Hearing a speech from Peter is always inspiring, and today he came by Britannia and the rest of the branches to talk with us farther-flung members in person. He started by reviewing a few changes to picketing schedules (for instance Friday’s branch pickets will be from 9-1 only– you can see the latest details at the Bargaining Resources page– ), and reminded everyone to use the advance sign-up sheets so picket captains can know what the coverage will be. All picket sites have petitions available now as well. We can ask members of the public to sign them at our library locations, and also take copies with us when we go to parties, barbeques, or anywhere else where we might be talking to supporters. Every site also has copies of a new pamphlet for handing out. These list our four key issues (pay equity, improvements for part-time and auxiliary staff, job security, and improved benefits).

Remember that our pay cheques will be at Central this Friday from 10-4. After Friday they will be held at the Union Office (545 West 10th, Monday to Friday)–bring your ID to pick them up.

The new news is that bicycle pickets are starting tomorrow! Cyclists are invited to meet at Britannia at 10 am to decorate their bikes, and then ride around spreading the word.

Peter and the executive also welcome suggestions and ideas. Jot them down on paper with as much detail as possible (including what, who, where, how, why, contact info, what you’re able to do, etc.) and pass them to your picket captain. (A couple of recent examples of ideas from the membership include child-friendly picket locations and the bicycle pickets.)

This Thursday there will be training again for anyone interested in doing more for the job action committee (including working as picket captain). This will be from 9-1 at the Union Office (545 West 10th).

Notes from the Bargaining Committee(from today’s visit to Britannia):

The entire Bargaining Committee is coming around to the branches to talk with members and answer questions in the different locations. The committee members asked me to pass along their apologies for not getting to everyone today, but will continue with branch visits as soon as they can later in the week. They reviewed some of the major recent news and made the important point that in spite of what the mainstream media are reporting, this dispute is not about wage and term issues–our main concerns are the four key issues listed in the pamphlet. (And for an alternative to the mainstream media reports, see the recent Tyee article at

Keep watching the committee’s reports right here and on the Bargaining News pages for more details and updates.

Other news

D’Arcy also reports that Heather Inglis (CUPE National’s rep for Prince George, a former 391 president and, I have to add, a one-time supervisor of mine) came by Central yesterday to talk about pay equity. Heather is the former pay equity coordinator for CUPE BC, and tells us that pay equity in libraries is becoming the norm. She has also recently negotiated a contract for the Dawson Creek library workers that includes pay equity. That’s good to hear!

And please note that changes are coming to the CUPE 391 website. The new site will include a new splash page with the flyer information on it. There will be a button for members to click that will lead to the essential job action resources.

That’s it for tonight! See you tomorrow on the picket line,