Community Social Services: job action rolls out across Vancouver Island

In the largest job actions undertaken since rotating strikes began two months ago, community social services workers at more than 20 agencies rallied support for a fair deal throughout the week of December 10.

As job actions swept across the island ... from Campbell River to Parksville, Courtenay, Nanaimo, and Victoria ... striking workers from HSA, HEU, CUPE, and BCGEU were buoyed by the solidarity and support they received from trade unionists and the general public.

In a departure from traditional picketing action, striking community social services members in Nanaimo, Courtenay and Victoria convened in town centres to serve hot food and beverages, soups, and baked goods to the public. They also gathered up warm clothing to distribute to people in need as a way to give back to their communities at a time of the year that is difficult for many of the people they support.

Solidarity shone throughout the week as library workers, ferry workers, postal workers, teachers and many other trade unionists came out to support their sisters and brothers in community social services.

Members from all four unions worked together to prepare food, gather clothing, and get their messages out to a receptive public and interested media, who published and broadcast stories throughout the week.

Since October 16, rotating strike actions have impacted agencies across B.C., including Vancouver, Kamloops, Prince George, Victoria, Nelson, Vernon, Campbell River, Parksville, Nanaimo, Courtenay, Williams Lake, Victoria, and many others.

Members from the following agencies were down to essential services at different points during the week of December 10:

Campbell River and District Association for Community Living (BCGEU); Comox Valley Transition Society (HSA); John Howard Society of North Island (HSA); Nanaimo Association for Community Living (CUPE); KDJ Alliances Holding Ltd (HEU); J. Garnons Williams (HEU); Haven Society (HSA); Parksville and District Association for Community Living (BCGEU); Victoria Womens Transition House Society (HSA); Becon Support Services (HEU), Community Living Victoria (HEU); Crossroads Human Services (HEU); Victoria Womens Sexual Assault Centre (BCGEU); Independent Living Housing Society (HEU); Integra Support Services (HEU); Kardel Consulting Services (HEU); Kjosa Community Living (HEU); Garth Homer Society (BCGEU); Autistic Homes Society (HEU); Victoria Community Resources Society (HEU); and Western Human Resources (HEU).

No further job action is scheduled until the New Year. You can read and see more at

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