Mandatory Vaccine Webinar Recap

Publish date: Wednesday, October 27, 2021

GLP - Government Licensed Professionals

Dear GLP members,

Thank you to everyone who attended our legal perspective webinar last week in regards to the Employer’s mandatory vaccine mandate. We wanted to provide a recap of the content for those who weren't able to attend and also to let members know that the vaccine mandate Q&A document has been updated

At this stage, we are waiting on the detailed mandatory vaccine policy from the Employer, which is expected for November 1. Until then we may not be able to comment on specific questions that members have about the policy. We continue to encourage members to follow the PHO's health orders and to be fully vaccinated.

Joint Standing Committee Update
During joint standing committee meetings, representatives from the Union (both staff and elected) meet with representatives from the Employer side (from the PSA and management). At the most recent meeting, we requested that the Employer consider non-disciplinary approaches for members who are not vaccinated by the November 22 deadline.

We asked that the Employer make decisions regarding when it’s safe to return to the office based on the best data available and that they take a careful approach with the safety of our members at the forefront of all decisions. To this, the Employer responded that November 22 was not a hard date for returning to the office. It is the date they have currently selected for double vaccinations to be completed by employees. Returning to the office on November 22 will be informed by the best data they have at the moment, and as advised by the PHO. They will re-evaluate this decision and date if the data indicates that this is not the best course of action.

During the meeting, we also asked the Employer to adopt a policy that would require appropriate mask-wearing and we raised concerns about crowded offices and stressed the continued importance of focusing on reducing close spaces, crowding, close contact.

We also brought forward questions about privacy and how information regarding vaccine status would be stored. To this, the employer responded that they are looking at how to proceed in the least obtrusive and most efficient ways. We will know more about this issue when the policy is released. 

Teleworking remains an important priority for our members and we pushed the employer to permit more teleworking opportunities and we requested more flexibility around teleworking for members with dependent care responsibilities. 

On the topic of accommodations, the Employer is exploring an expedited process that will streamline accommodation requests so they are dealt with in an efficient manner. If a member is requesting accommodation they should reach out to the PEA for support.

Correspondence with the Deputy Minister
Members can also view the correspondence we have had back and forth with Lori Wanamaker, Deputy Minister to the Premier regarding the GLP pandemic survey results and the return to office date on the PEA website. 

This continues to be an evolving issue that has been resource-intensive for the PEA including for our volunteer executives and local reps. I want to thank them for their commitment to working through these challenging issues on your behalf and thank you all for your patience.

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 48 Issue 1

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

The Spring 2022 issue takes a deep dive into the work of GLP members and their work during provincial emergencies.

Read the latest 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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