Seasons Greeting from Local 951

Welcome friends and warm seasons greetings.


I would like to take this opportunity to reflect on the last 6 months.

To say hitting the ground running would be fair statement as of my first day in office, your bargaining committee meet to prepare for a meeting with the employer on July 3rd to commence our current round of bargaining.

The next day your Union as the employer meet to bargain with the BC union workers union as our executive assistants contract had expired. By July 29 we had a ratified agreement with the EA’s Union.

Throughout July your bargaining committee meet on the 8,9,15 and 23 with the employer and were able to achieve some common ground on mostly house keeping language, then parties adjourned for the rest of the summer.

As most of you would know CUPE local 4163 Component 3 at Uvic had taken a Strike vote in July. This led to our local setting up an Ad-Hoc committee on an Essential Services Order. We meet with the other locals on Aug 19th, this followed by a 5 week long stretch of meetings with the locals and the employer to try and come to a new ESO. With no agreement in place we were headed to the LRB for a mediation by Sept 23rd.

Local 4163 was able to reach an agreement with employer on the 18th of Sept and the ESO talks were put into abeyance.

Our National convention was Oct 6 to 11 in Montreal. 4 delegates went on your behalf to vote on changes to our constitution and resolutions that guide your union over the next 2 years. We are happy to be able to report back that CUPE is now the largest Union in Canada having over 700,000 members from coast to coast to coast.

On Oct 16th& 17th members of CUPE BC committees met in Richmond to map out the next 2 years in our province. 3 members from local 951 sit on these committees.  Libraries, Universities, Skilled Trades and Persons with Disabilities committees. Now CUPE BC has 97,000 members making CUPE the largest Union in BC.

During Nov,

CUPE Local 441 Saanich School district 63 was out on strike. I received calls and email from many of our members who have children in those schools and were concerned on how long it may last. I took vacation time off to visit 7 of those school’s picket lines in the mornings to bring food and a message of solidarity from 951. Some of our members also went out and showed their support for these workers.

After the rallies on the 8,13 with CUPE BC RVP’s, GVP’s, Secretary Treasure Trevor Davies and President Paul Faro, including BC FED President Laird Cronk & CUPE National President Mark Hancock in attendance. On Nov 15 CUPE local 441 and the SD 63 were able to ratify a new collective agreement.

On Nov 26 your bargaining committee meet again with the employer to start up were we had left off in July.  As of Nov 12, CUPE Local 4163 Comp 1 & 2 and CUPE local 917 started to bargain with the employer. Local 917 has joint proposals with our local and we look forward to meeting with them on Dec 16th.

Please feel welcome to reach out to any of the bargaining committee members to ask questions.


Finally, I would like to share with you some events that I took part in over this time.

Sept 14 Be More Than a Bystander training, BC LIONS and Ending Violence Association of BC, teaching men to be allies in the fight to end the culture of violence against women.

Oct 24 The Provencal Government tabling of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples,

This historic day saw a first in Canada that brings Indigenous peoples to the table for the decisions that affect them, their families and their territories. It provides a way forward on reconciliation with a plan that will work for everyone in B.C.

Oct 28 & Nov 5 United Way Uvic Kick off and the Plasma Car Race, our 951 team Bread & Roses won our first heat and made it to the finals!

Nov 14 Highlight of the month was meeting Joan Peterson, she had been working here since 1973 and at the top of our seniority list. We whish her a well-deserved retirement.

Nov 19   Lancaster House Bargaining Conference, Updates from bargaining in the current mandate, also bringing truth and reconciliation in to the work place.

Dec 6     National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence against Women Vigil at Holland Point Park, we were reminded of the largest mass shooting in Canada that was targeted only at women. 30 years have gone, us men must now more than ever be allies and hold our fathers, brothers, Sons accountable to stop violence against women.

As a Union we help build respectful, strong communities and workplaces.  With your hard work through union committees and supporting of social & economical issues, we are making a difference.  Everyone of you should be proud of the great accomplishments local 951 has made and will continue to make.



In Solidarity

President CUPE 951

Kirk Mercer