Only in B.C. #1

This is the first in what will be a series of posts about issues that come up in B.C. that to anyone who is not familiar with this part of the world might seem as if they are from another planet.

Today it is about the unions, which in B.C. have managed to enforce even a particular special terminology over the discourse. A "strike" is not that, it is a "job action" or a "work action". How about a "non-work action"?

Recently, there were ads running on the radio in which the union representing workers at Telus, the local phone company, was urging Telus customers to call and cancel value added services such as call waiting and call display in a show of support for the workers. The workers of the company telling customers to diminish revenue of the company and nobody finds that odd?

Even more recently, the issue of a possible teachers strike has emerged. The issue is that the current provincial government wants education to be considered an "essential service" and as such subject to more restrictive rules about when the teachers can strike and how the dispute resolution is handled. This would differentiate education from, say, fixing the potholes or managing parks and put it in the category of things such as health care.

In a truly peculiar twist, the legal counsel for the teachers union recently argued that "prior experience tells us that learning outcomes are not significantly affected by even relatively long-term strikes and lockouts". So the teacher's union is arguing that whether kids go to school or not does not "significantly affect learning outcomes". What does that say about the value added that its members provide then?

Comments

Miljenko Horvat said…
Test comment to see if Trilly Lily was right.

mh

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