GLP declares impasse with BC government and calls for a strike vote

Publish date: Tuesday, May 17, 2022 news

May 16, 2022 (Victoria) – The Professional Employees Association (PEA) reached impasse with the provincial government's Public Service Agency (PSA) in negotiating a contract for the 1,200 Government Licensed Professionals (GLP) working in the public service. The GLP collective agreement expired on March 31, 2022.

The union entered bargaining with the PSA on April 11 but it quickly became apparent that member priorities involving compensation would not be adequately addressed.

“With the rising cost of inflation, the number one issue for our members is a wage proposal that includes COLA (cost of living adjustment) protection,” said Melissa Moroz, Labour Relations Officer with the PEA. “We have reached impasse because the BC government is essentially asking our members to take a pay cut.”

GLP members are employed by the BC government and work across 11 ministries as engineers, geoscientists, psychologists, pharmacists, agrologists, foresters and veterinarians. Their work provides government with the knowledgeable oversight of forestry, mining, and fossil fuels, and also includes the planning of BC’s infrastructure, forests, and farms. During the devastating wildfire and flooding of 2021, these professionals were a critical part of the emergency response, rebuilding bridges and roads, forecasting flooding impacts, and helping farmers evacuate.

“Our members are the scientific experts the province relies on,” says Moroz. “With climate change an ever-present reality, we need them to help keep our province safe. We hope the province will come back to the table with a meaningful offer that recognizes the value of professionals in the public service.”

The PEA will be meeting with GLP members in advance of the strike vote, which will be conducted over two weeks beginning Tuesday, June 7 with vote results on Wednesday, June 22, the same day the BC General Employees’ Union will announce their strike vote results.

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About the PEA

The Professional Employees Association is a labour union for professional employees. The union was formed in 1974 to represent the Government Licensed Professionals employed in the BC Public Service and has since grown to represent professionals in the education, legal, union and health care sectors.

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Media Contact:

Jordana Whetter, Senior Communications Officer
Phone: 250-385-8791 ext. 210

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.

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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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