C.U.P.W. Pacific Region
2015 LGBTQ Pride Season: A Time to Celebrate

Every year between June and September, the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer (LGBTQ) Community and their allies celebrate Pride.

On behalf of the CUPW National Human Rights Committee we would like to encourage all CUPW Locals in the Pacific Region to participate in Pride events in your community (please see below for a partial list of events).

Pride is a chance for the LGBTQ community and their allies to celebrate diversity and acceptance. However, Pride is more than just a party. It is also a political struggle for safety and full equality for all people. Plus it is a time to commemorate those who have been persecuted, jailed, assaulted or killed while fighting for their rights.

Over the last 45 years Canada has made major strides to strengthen the legal rights of LGBTQ persons.

  • August 28, 1969 - The Canadian government decriminalized same-sex sexual activity between consenting adults.
  • April 17, 1982 - The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms was signed into law by Queen Elizabeth II.
  • Since 1992, lesbians and gays have been able to serve openly in the Canadian military.
  • In 1996 sexual orientation was incorporated into the Canadian Human Rights Code.
  • July 20, 2005 - Canada became the fourth country in the world to legalize same-sex marriage.
  • Currently adoption by same-sex couples is legal in British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Northwest Territories, Nova Scotia, Nunavut, Ontario, Quebec, Prince Edward Island, and Saskatchewan.
  • Bill C-279 An Act to add gender identity to the protections of the Canadian Human Rights Act and the hate crimes provisions of the Criminal Code was passed by the House of Commons in March 20, 2013. However, it is currently being held up in the Senate by Conservative Senator Don Plett who has introduced an amendment that will seriously weaken the Bill.

Despite these advances, laws are just words on paper. Real equality can only be achieved when people change their attitudes and beliefs. It is important to remember that discrimination and threats of violence against people who are, or who are perceived to be, LGBTQ still occurs on a daily basis in Canada. In 2015 Ireland, Slovenia and Luxembourg legalized same sex marriage bringing the total to 19 countries to do so. Sadly, the rest of the world has been slow to recognize the equality of all human beings. Same sex relationships are still illegal in 76 countries. In 7 of those countries homosexuality is punishable by death.

Below is a list of upcoming Pride Parades and Festivals in the Pacific Region that we are aware of. We encourage all members to participate in events in your communities.

Congratulations to the members of the Quesnel Local who participated in Quesnel’s first Pride Parade on June 6, 2015. If your community has a Pride event that is not on this list please let us know:

  • The 15th Annual Surrey Pride Festival, Sunday, June 28, 2015 from 12:00 PM to 5:00 PM in Holland Park: http://www.surreypride.ca/
  • The Victoria Pride Parade starts at Noon on Sunday, July 5, 2015 at Government and Pandora, and the Festival opens immediately after at MacDonald Park in James Bay: http://www.victoriapridesociety.org
  • The Vancouver Pride Parade starts at Noon on Sunday, August 2, 2015 at Robson and Thurlow and the Pride Festival at Sunset Beach runs from 11:00 AM to 6:00 PM: http://www.vancouverpride.ca
  • New West Pride Week Will Be August 8th - 15th, 2015 in New Westminster, BC. and the New West Pride Columbia Street Party Will Be Saturday, August 15th, 2015: http://newwestpride.com/
  • The Okanagan Pride Rally & March starts at 11:00 am on Saturday, August 15, 2015 at Stuart Park in Kelowna and ends at the Pride Festival in City Park: http://gayokanagan.com
  • Kootenay Pride Weekend Nelson, BC August 28 to 31, 2015.
  • Salt Spring Island Pride is celebrated on the weekend after Labour Day in September (September 12 & 13): http://www.glossi.org

For more information on specific events please visit the websites listed above.

The Pacific Region has a CUPW Pride Banner that we can loan to Locals on a first come first served basis. We can also arrange to order our CUPW Pride Lion fridge magnets. Pride Festivals may also provide an opportunity to promote our “Save Canada Post” campaign although that should not be the sole focus of our participation. Please let us know as soon as possible if your Local would like any of these materials.

In pride & solidarity,

Tim Armstrong
National Director

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Pacific & Prairie Regions – PEL 5-day Education Seminar - Sept. 14 to 18, 2015

June 23, 2015


RE: Pacific & Prairie Regions – PEL 5-day Education Seminar
“Turtle Island” Course
“Fight Back/Political Action” Course

The Pacific Region is pleased to announce that the next 5-day Education Seminars will be held in conjunction with the Prairie Region in Whistler, B.C. from September 14 to 18, 2015. These are Paid Education Leave (PEL) courses so we are limited to twenty (20) participants in total or ten (10) in each class per Region.

The courses being offered are as follows:

1. Turtle Island

The Turtle Island course gives an overview of the history of the indigenous people of Turtle Island (North America) as told by Aboriginal workers, who also facilitate it.

Participants will begin the process of understanding the shared struggles of Aboriginal People and Unions. They will deepen their understanding of the general concepts of partnerships and representative workforce. Providing factual information will dispel the current myths and misconceptions that surround Aboriginal People. In a positive environment, participants will examine the barriers to diversity in the workplace. By exploring their personal attitudes towards an inclusive work environment they will build their capacity to become instruments of change. For solidarity to occur, organized labour and Aboriginal people must work together for both to achieve their goals.

2. Fighting Back/Political Action : A Primer in Local Postal Worker Power

This participant-focused course, also known as the “activist” course, aims to assist members to focus their power at the local level by seeking and deepening alliances within the community, labour movement and workplace, while finding the roles that they can play to strengthen their individual parts, and as a whole.

The political action component aims to help participants improve their lobbying, canvassing, outreach and campaign capacity with a focus on municipal and federal politics. Participants learn how to have a more effective impact on their elected representative – through a meeting, strategic direct action, or removing a hostile MP at the ballot box.
As these courses are offered under the PEL provision of our collective agreement, all costs including loss of wages, transportation and meals will be paid by the National Union. As bus transportation will be supplied, those choosing to take their personal vehicle will not be compensated for mileage or parking and bus fare will be provided to the Vancouver Bus Depot only.

Interested members should be made aware that all sessions of the courses offered are mandatory and that there will be some evening sessions. Please instruct participants to inform the REOO of any medical conditions that must be considered and ask all participants to refrain from wearing any fragrances during the sessions to protect those with fragrance sensitivity allergies.

Download registration form HERE.

The deadline for registration is 5:00 p.m. on July 31, 2015. Please ensure your applications are in by that date, any application received after the deadline will not be considered. All applications must be approved by your Local Executive and the registration form must be signed by the Local President or designate.

In solidarity,

Tom Jackson
Education & Organization Officer


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Private Sector Negotiations Bulletin No. 1 - March 6, 2015

CUPW members who work for Dynamex Canada Ltd. in British Columbia voted 97.4% in favour of our Union’s program of demands. Ratification meetings were held in Kamloops, Kelowna, Nanaimo, Prince George and Victoria.

The program of demands contain proposals on improved compensation, job security, seniority, health and safety, relief drivers, benefits, union protection and rights of members.


On Wednesday, October 22, 2014, Canada Post advised our union by email that the communities serviced by Depot 4 in Victoria would be the first homes in the Pacific Region to lose door-to-door delivery. This was followed today by emails that Letter Carriers Depots in Sidney and Campbell River would also be converted to Community Mail Box (CMB) delivery. These notifications arrived while management was already announcing this information to our members on the work floor. Canada Post refuses to hold meaningful consultation with the union, the public or municipalities.

This move will have a negative impact on over 18,000 homes in Victoria, Langford, Colwood, Saanich, Esquimalt, View Royal and the Songhees First Nation plus thousands more in Sidney and Campbell River.

This follows on the heels of Canada Post eliminating door-to-door delivery to 74,000 homes in 10 communities around Calgary, Fort McMurray, Winnipeg, Ottawa, Montreal, and Halifax on Monday, October 20, 2014. A further 26,000 homes around Oakville are slated to be converted to community mail box (CMB) delivery in November.


altWhen Canada Post seeks to change shift hours and/or days of work for employees in Group 1 (postal clerks, despatchers & mail handlers) and Group 2 (Letter Carriers & Mail Service Couriers), it must first ”meaningfully” consult with representatives of the Union and provide no less than 48 hours’ advance notice to the affected employees.

Should Canada Post fail to provide the required notice, the Collective Agreement requires that it pay the affected employees at the rate of time and one-half for all hours worked on the first scheduled shift following the change: