B.C. considers Labour Relations Code changes

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

The B.C. government has released a report on updating B.C.’s Labour Relations Code after consultations with British Columbians, businesses, and labour organizations.

The report, Recommendations for Amendments to the Labour Relations Code, makes 29 recommendations, covering a wide range of topics such as union certification processes, dispute resolution, successorship, unfair labour practices and arbitration procedures.

“Workers’ rights and protections, regardless of where they work, need to be reflected in a modernized code,” said Harry Bains, Minister of Labour. “The last full review was in 1992, and clearly, a great deal has changed in how people work in today’s economy.”

The panel of special advisors – Michael Fleming, Sandra Banister and Barry Dong – was appointed in February 2018 to review the code to ensure B.C.’s unionized workplaces are supported by fair laws for workers and businesses that are consistent with the labour rights and protections enjoyed by other Canadians. The panel held public and stakeholder consultations around the province, and undertook extensive research.

The panel received 108 written submissions and replies, 94 emails and 83 oral presentations at 10 regional meetings held in nine locations throughout the province.

“Our mandate was to consult with the community, and review the code to ensure workplaces support a growing, sustainable economy with fair laws for workers and business,” said Fleming, panel chair. “The input we received from the labour relations community was thoughtful and reasoned, and invaluable to our review.”

The public is invited to review and submit feedback on the report until Nov. 30. Additional consultations with key stakeholders will also be undertaken as government prepares amendments to the code in spring 2019.

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