Novel Coronavirus Statement

Publish date: Monday, January 27, 2020

According to Health Canada, on December 31, 2019 a cluster of cases of pneumonia were reported in Wuhan, China, and the cause has now been confirmed as the new 2019 Novel Coronavirus. Known in the media as the coronavirus or the Wuhan coronavirus, this illness is in the same family as SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome). A thorough list of FAQs on the coronavirus, including symptoms, transmission, travel precautions, and government actions is available HERE.

The Government of Canada has taken measures to mitigate the risk of introduction and spread of disease and have stated that while the risk of an outbreak of the coronavirus in Canada remains low, you should tell your health care professional if you have travelled to an affected area of China, and have developed flu-like symptoms.

PEA members in some sectors (such as healthcare) have a greater likelihood of exposure to viruses and employers have a general duty to take every precaution reasonable to provide protection. Employers in these sectors should already have effective plans in place for regular day-to-day interactions; however, if you are concerned about your occupational safety or your employer's workplace response to the coronavirus, please connect with your labour relations officer. 

As we continue to monitor the situation, common practices to reduce the likelihood of becoming infected by any viral infection still hold: wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, avoid touching your face, and avoid close contact with people who are sick. 

In this section

The PEA was formed in 1974, by a group of professionals working in the public sector. The story goes that the founders of the union mortgaged their houses to fund negotiations of the union’s first collective agreement. 

Now, the PEA is BC’s union for professionals. We represent a wide range of professionals including lawyers, foresters, engineers, agrologists, teachers, veterinarians, fundraisers, physiotherapists, pharmacists, psychologists program managers, librarians and more.

Our union is led by the PEA Executive. They represent members from across the chapters of the PEA and set the overall vision and direction for our union.

Resources for our members

Navigating a union can sometime be a challenging process. Under this section of the website you will find resources to help you navigate the PEA. In the members section you'll find expense claim reimbursements, information on the PEA's scholarship and bursary program and our grants and donations program.

Collective bargaining and job action resources explain the process of collective bargaining and what to do in the unlikely event of job action. 

Local reps can also find resources to help them complete their job more effectively. This includes ways to welcome new members, how to take notes in investigation disciplinary meetings and more.

The heart of our union

The PEA is made up of nine chapters, or groups of members who either work for the same employer or are in the same field of work. Each chapter has an elected executive tasked with running the affairs of the chapter. Each chapter is entitled to representation at the PEA Executive, the governing body of the union. 

Our members work for a range of employers: the Province of BC, the University of Victoria, St. Margaret's School, the Family Maintenance Enforcement Program, the Oil and Gas Commission, the Law Society of BC, Legal Services Society, the Okangan Regional Library and health authorities across BC.

Professionals need unions now more then ever

Since the 1970’s, when the PEA was formed, our mission has been to ensure our members can work in safe, productive environments and receive fair and reasonable wages and benefits for the valuable work they do. We help individuals and groups of professional workers to understand the challenges they face in their workplaces and some of the solutions available to them. 

We work with potential members to become certified as a union and achieve the wages, benefits and respect they deserve. 

The Professional | Volume 46 Issue 1

The Professional is the PEA's award-winning, quarterly magazine for members.

The August-September 2020 issue includes a look into Animal Care Services at UVic.

Read the August-September 2020 issue



The PEA was formed in 1974 to represent licensed professionals in the BC Public Service. Since then the organization has grown to include a wide range of professionals from across BC. Find our more about our governance, staff and strategic direction.

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