DON’T LET OTHERS DECIDE FOR YOU: PLEASE VOTE!
July 2, 2022 – update to members
Do we settle, or do we strike? It’s your decision.
It’s time for all UFCW Local 247 members working at BC Superstore locations and warehouses to make an important decision. Votes on the latest contract offer from Loblaw will be held in secret ballot polls across the province throughout next week.
All members will be affected by the outcome of this vote, so the need for massive participation could not be greater, and the stakes could not be higher.
We urge all members to PLEASE GET INFORMED ABOUT THE NEW AGREEMENT, and PLEASE VOTE based on accurate information and what you believe is best for you and your family.
VOTING TIMES AND LOCATIONS ARE AVAILABLE HERE.
WHAT VOTING "YES" MEANS
If members vote YES, there will be a new union contract that is substantially better than the company offer rejected in April. There will not be a union strike, and there will not be a company lock out.
WHAT VOTING "NO" MEANS
If members vote NO, as a Union, we will serve notice to strike against the company, and strategically COORDINATED and LEGAL walk outs and picket lines will be set up, effectively shutting down all BC Superstore locations and warehouses for an undetermined period of time.
DON’T LET OTHERS DECIDE WHAT HAPPENS NEXT! PLEASE VOTE.
PLEASE BE PREPARED FOR EITHER OUTCOME
Ballots will be counted in the afternoon of Friday, July 8, 2022, and the results of the vote will be posted on the Union’s website at www.ufcw247.com.
With a NO vote, a labour dispute will likely commence within the next two weeks.
While strike notice is normally 72 hours, as required by the BC Labour Relations Code, we expect Loblaw will either immediately commence a lock out (as they have threatened) or try to extend the notice period because the dispute would involve perishable goods. That decision will be made by the Labour Relations Board, and so the precise timing of a dispute can’t be determined at this time.
PLEASE DON’T ASSUME A SHORT DISPUTE: BE PREPARED
It would be naïve to assume Loblaw will buckle after a few days of closed stores or lost sales. The best and most responsible advice we can give is to prepare for 6 months and hope for a few days.
If you haven’t already, please ensure you have taken the appropriate steps to be ready for a dispute. As you prepare, please be reminded of the following key points:
LOBLAW WILL NOT PAY YOU WHEN YOU ARE ON STRIKE. Companies do not pay wages during a labour dispute. PICKET PAY IS AVAILABLE for those who REGISTER FOR PICKET DUTY AND WHO PICKET the required minimum hours.
PICKET PAY IS TAX FREE and is $400 for Full-time employees who picket 24+ hours each week and $325 for Part-time employees who picket 20+ hours each week. South Surrey DC members are not currently participating in the NDF and picket pay is $300 for Full-time employees who picket 24+ hours each week and $275 for Part-time employees who picket 20+ hours each week. Full details of picket pay are available on our FAQ update here.
PICKET PAY IS NOT PAYABLE IN THE FIRST WEEK of a dispute, and your first cheque for picket pay will be available no earlier than 14 days after the commencement of a dispute.
You are NOT eligible for Service Canada Employment Insurance because of a labour dispute. Please note you may still be eligible for other reasons (i.e. maternity/parental leave).
NEVER CROSS A PICKET LINE: If picket pay alone is not enough, there are alternatives to betraying your coworkers by crossing a picket line. You can:
GET ANOTHER JOB to supplement income you receive from your union for picketing.
TALK TO YOUR LENDERS (bank, mortgage lender, credit cards, etc) to arrange payment deferrals because of the dispute.
TALK TO YOUR UNION through picket captains or union representatives before considering crossing. A strong line depends on solidarity, and we are happy to work with anyone to meet their diverse needs.
If you are still considering crossing a picket line, PLEASE STAY HOME rather than betray your coworkers.
The outcome of these votes will have a big impact on all members.
Now is a time for preparation, unity and solidarity, not confusion and distraction.
Please vote in an informed way.
Whatever members decide, that decision will be supported by your union!
UFCW Local 247