September 18, 2020 - As the Labour Day weekend is now behind us, I remain focused on the priority issue, your health and safety in the workplace, as we head into the first fall season of the COVID-19 pandemic. The forecast from our public health officials is concerning and we understand the anxieties experienced by many families with kids who have now returned to schools and institutions of higher learning, or who are making significant arrangements to accommodate distanced learning. For others, there is also the return to organized sports in many BC communities. And, on top of everything else, most of the province has been covered in a thick blanket of smoke-filled air resulting from unprecedented forest fires in the western United States. I urge all members to pay attention to and to follow all public health guidelines, remember to wash your hands, maintain social distancing, keep your bubbles small, and wear a mask. The government’s provincial state of emergency remains in place and COVID-19 hasn’t disappeared. It is very important that if you do not feel well you must not go to work.
I am very sad to report the unexpected passing of Brother Dwayne Popek, a well-liked family man who was a highly respected lineman having worked on many of BC Hydro’s large transmission construction projects. A Go Fund Me campaign has been established by a family friend to assist the family in these difficult times. On behalf of our entire membership, Local 258 IBEW extends our sincere condolences to the family and to those who knew and worked with Brother Popek.
Join me in welcoming Sister Rachel Allan who has recently been appointed as Unit 6 Chair to complete the remainder of the term. Sister Allan works in Traffic Control at Prime Traffic Solutions in Langley, and also serves as Vice Chair of our Women’s Committee. She joined the volunteer activists for a very successful COVID-aware bottle drive on August 29th - our “Project Bottle Drive to Survive” campaign to support Food Banks BC. This fundraising campaign remains in effect until the end of today, so please contribute if you can.
Effective immediately, Sister Dayna Gill, Assistant Business Manager, will be serving our members and Shop Stewards who work with Traffic Control and Manufacturing companies. Sister Nicole Biernaczyk is no longer with our organization and I will be announcing her replacement in the following weeks. We wish Sister Biernaczyk well in her future endeavours. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me directly.
I have a few tickets remaining for the IBEW First District Canada draw for a $5,000.00 cash prize, and a Grand Prize draw for a 2020 Harley-Davidson Road King FLHR. Tickets are $100 each and only 500 tickets will be sold. You must be a Canadian IBEW member to purchase and win. Due to the current global pandemic, the date, time and location of the draw is undetermined. All proceeds from this draw will assist with funding the IBEW All Canada Meeting welcome reception scheduled to take place in August 2021.
I encourage you to take a moment and download our Local 258 IBEW App, available for download onto your smart phone or tablet device when you log-in to your Member Account. The App provides a quick and easy reference to your Union website. We appreciate your feedback on the App and if you’ve had any difficulties – technical or otherwise - with it, you can email email@example.com.
For members interested in politics who would like to take a more active role in your community, the BC Federation of Labour is offering free Political Action training. Find out more at https://www.wevotebc.ca.
All Unit Meetings remain suspended until further notice. Your Local 258 IBEW Executive Board meets again by conference call on Tuesday, October 6 and the minutes from the September meeting have now been posted on your password-protected Union website. I encourage you to read them.
The next Stat Holiday is: Thanksgiving Day, Monday, October 12, 2020.
Thank you for reading this email and remember Dr. Bonnie Henry’s wise advice to “Be kind, be calm, and be safe”, at work and at home.
Business Manager/Financial Secretary
Local 258 IBEW
Cell phone: 604-209-4067
Office Direct: 604-515-3240