Premier “won’t let BCTF dispute simmer”

Vancouver, BC, Canada / News Talk 980 CKNW | Vancouver's News. Vancouver's Talk
Premier "won't let BCTF dispute simmer"

Although talks broke off at the end of June, BC’s Premier is confident the ongoing teachers’ dispute can be resolved before classes resume in September.

“I am not content to let this simmer.”

Christy Clark says a settlement can be reached through bargaining, but that requires union negotiators come back to the table over the summer.

“Every week, our negotiator’s on the phone to the BCTF inviting them to come back to the table, but here’s the thing, we’ve settled agreements with about fifty per cent of the public sector including school support workers that are in classrooms working right beside teachers.”

Union leaders claim government negotiators are the ones refusing to meet.


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  1. Lets see…your last offer..75 million for a learning improvement fund…not one additional penny added to this fund..same as last year. How many teachers and EA’s does that mean. How much of this money returned to government through increased hydro rates and carbon tax. How many students will not receive the services they need due to lack of funding. What about the clause to void the contract if you lose in appeals court. You went from a no chance in hell 10 year contract to 6 years. That was movement. Hope you group is more competent in negotiating the LNG contract.

    • I’m glad to hear someone notice this. I simply can’t take anymore “empty babble” from this clueless dolt. She never says anything of substance in any situation. It’s an unbelievable avoidance of anything resembling leadership or decision making. With this dispute she fails to acknowledge that this has been “simmering” since 2002 when she herself caused all of the conflict. Unbelievable.

  2. Nice photo Ms Clark- yup- that is definitely your “let’s discuss this rationally” face. Seriously- don’t go waving the flag of how many unions this gov’t has “settled with.” Did you rip off their sectors of millions of dollars that should have been spent in classrooms? (Actually, maybe I shouldn’t ask that question…). Nonetheless- this government did, and is STILL using taxpayer’s $$ to take it back to court for the THIRD time. How many times does this government have to be told that it broke the law and stripped contract language and millions from BC teachers and BC kids! Of course you have a backup plan- the old: “if we don’t like what the Supreme Court says we’ll destroy the collective agreement” proposal. Is that arrogance or contempt? Maybe both. You’re right about one thing though- we’re not simmering- we’re BOILING!

  3. The BCTF is not available. It’s summer vacation time.

    Currently the BCTF wants 225 million per year to improve compensation for current teachers (on top of the 14.5% they are demanding as wages/benefits) and another 225 million per year to hire new teachers (with the union having equal say to where these teachers will be working).

    The BCTF is refusing to have a review to find out actual numbers of special needs that both sides will agree to. The BCTF wants to stay with the story based special needs planning model.

    • Well “D”- you really need to try and get some facts straight. Let me help you:
      1.The BCTF IS available- the BCTF excec does not “take summer off.” (Oh, by the way- stop trying to hold teachers accountable for the school calendar- that’s your government who determines that one. Teachers have been trying to get more year round schools for years- it is good pedagogy but it costs too much to run the buildings and it would cost more in CUPE time so- hence the Gov’t imposed “summer”).
      2. In case you have not heard (which would not surprise me because the gov’t wants everyone to pretend this didn’t happen) the 500 million is only a portion of the funds this gov’t has illegally stripped from BC classrooms over the past 12 years. If you want to find out how much money they really stole- read the ruling. The 500 million is a drop in the bucket toward restoring CSC as ORDERED TWICE by the courts.
      3. Where do you get 14.5 in wages? Do you just make this stuff up? Last term and number on the table from the BCTF was 5 years/ 8%- gov’t was at 6 years / 7%.
      4. Love to see your unbiased empirical evidence of the BCTF refusing to “find out actual numbers.” We know what the numbers are- district teachers and psychometricians do the coding- there is no mystery here. It’s the gov’t that doesn’t know what the numbers are- because they don’t read the documentation we send them. Hey- I can even count- let’s see- that’s 218 students on my load- no cap on my class sizes – so that means one of my classes has 37- the others hover around 33. I have coded students in all of them- one class has seven coded students – no SEA.
      Been doing this for 27 years and have never seen the classes so crowded – so under supplied and so many unsupported coded students.
      5. Oh yes- my “summer vacation” is on a picket line.
      Honestly- the drug dealers in this province are treated with more respect than the teachers.

      • Which picket line? I haven’t seen one teacher over the last 2 weeks outside of any school.

        I said 14.5 in wages and benefits, please tell me you’re not an English teacher.

        Why is it any teachers that comments about class size always has such a high number? There must be a lot of classes with 4 or 5 students with teachers that don’t like to comment.

        • Really? I was on the picket line last week in Langley. Also there is a burma shave going on today on 200th in Langley. As far as class size is concerned – I have never seen a class size of 4 or 5 students – not ever.

          • Then how do the averages work out? If all these teachers are stating they have more kids than the average, logic suggests there are classes with small numbers? Unless you feel that some teachers are exaggerating.

      • Shelley,
        you assumed that I am choosing a side and I am not.
        I simply recited a few facts.

        You are correct that the gov’t is coming after the union because they believe they have a strong mandate to do so.

        Teacher’s unions in BC have been fighting a 20th century Marxist cause instead of a professional college for 40 years.
        In other provinces this problem is not as prevalent because there are more than two political parties so the teachers union does not align themselves with a single party.

        BC’s 2 party dilemma is hugely the result of the media…especially this outlet.
        Every time they run a poll they offer a choice of one or the other.
        It’s very reminiscent of U.S. style news especially FOX.

        Good luck…you will need it.
        Pay attention to how the nurses are going to do it.
        And change your leader.

  4. Why would the Premier negotiate with Teachers ??? No need to rush. Just stick to Her guns and the Teachers will want to negotiate. Not now, though, the Teachers want their summer holidays. They seem to be in no hurry.

  5. That CC is ‘not content to let it simmer’ is code for a contract to be imposed on teachers through legislation-something she said earlier would not be done.

    Asking the BCTF to return to the bargaining table with a revised offer is asking a little too much when the government offer from day 1 has not changed at all other than backing off from a 10-year term and a signing bonus which was retracted automatically on June 30th.

    If collective bargaining is allowed to work, the government must also be willing to come back with an improved offer.

    Better for the BCTF to let the government take whatever action it wants. With two decisions in its back pocket, the BCTF would be wise to await a final judicial ruling even if it takes years. If the final decision favours the BCTF as UBC law professor Bakan expects, the BCTF can look forward to appropriate retroactive compensation being ordered and paid out by the government.

    The government strategy to kick the day of reckoning down the road comes with great risks to the provincial treasury.

  6. “Every week, our negotiator’s on the phone to the BCTF inviting them to come back to the table, but here’s the thingy who is telling the truth about the phone calls, the phone company could end that dispute pronto! With a thingy, thing here and a thingy,thing there and tell us who’s is being fair!

  7. Any one who doesn’t believe that controlling the teacher’s union was a big factor in the last election is in denial.

    By far the majority of teachers have long ago received their last pay cheque for the 2013-2014 year. They have budget for being without pay for the next two months.

    Teachers, you are in a very bad position this round.
    Please be aware that many, many of the people that you are asking to give you an increase (BC Taxpayers) have not a pay increase in years and don’t have a pension.

    • We have a budget? Seriously? I am so sick of people thinking this is just about salary. FYI- teachers in this province have not had any wage increase in four years (four years of zero. zero zero and zero) and what we received before that- we were coerced into signing on threat of being fined $500 a day if we refused- yup- THAT’s democracy. This is a government bent on breaking the union at any cost- even to the point of breaking the law and stealing from the classrooms of this province. Anti union? Go and study up on the Industrial Revolution- maybe you don’t realize that even non union employees benefit from the laws and conditions negotiated by unions.
      Teachers walked away from a signing bonus and continued after only receiving strike pay for three days- as provincial strike funds were depleted from fighting (and twice winning) against this gov’t in court.
      We will probably lose our house- and why? Because I am out on the picket line trying to get smaller classes and support for the identified kids in my classes. Not only do I have to see those class size and composition issues every day – but I have kids IN the school system whose learning is affected by the status quo. At least I will be able to look my kids in the eye and tell them that teachers stood up against this government to fight for restoration of illegally stripped contract language.
      I think Martin Luther King Jr. must also have been told that he was also in a “very bad position.”

      • You’re not actually suggesting that the ‘struggle’ for shorter instruction time and increased access to fertility treatments is similar to what Martin Luther King Jr was fighting for?

        That’s pretty low.

      • Wow. You’ve compared yourselves to drug dealers and Martin Luther King Jr in the space of 15 minutes.
        Please don’t whine about your unfortunate situation when the BCTF has dragged their feet on your behalf for over a year and a half. Iker waited until near the end of the school year before even putting his demands on the table and even asked you to put your home on the line – blurry as it is. You can easily pick up your phone and give him a call today (he says he’s been waiting by it) and tell him it’s his job make a deal to protect your income, not ruin it.

  8. Please be aware that many, many of the people that you are asking to give you an increase (BC Taxpayers) have not a pay increase in years and don’t have a pension.You need to Join a union someone need to negotiate your wages,it seems you Surely can’t do it alone now can you!

    • “You need to Join a union someone need to negotiate your wages,it seems you”

      Really Ken . . . private sector unions have worked very hard in the last two decades to make themselves Irrelevant, which is why they are disappearing from the landscape all across Canada. They have given away hard earned dues to insane political parties, pushed social agendas like the Occupy Movement and always come out with insane comments on world events. All this instead of Looking After their Membership, Growing their Locals and the Well-Being of their Industry.
      So today . . . after several mergers they are an endangered species on the Canadian Landscape.

      What good was the Union at Caterpillar a couple of years back and numerous other plants in Ontario where they just stood outside with their picket signs as the place closed and move away. Why were they not paying attention years earlier as the incompetent Ontario govt increased the cost of doing business so high in their province that there was no other option for these employers?

      Reality is Ken . . . Unions have been the authors of their own destruction . . .

  9. Why do teachers and their keep referring to the Christy problem? To the best of my knowledge the teachers and their BCTF have NEVER agreed with ANY Gov’t OR mediator.
    By the way who pays for these mediators BCTF always want but NEVER agree with??

  10. Another perspective on this story is the notion that CC will actually escalate the fight with the BCTF.

    Her words may well be worth heeding when she suggests she ‘won’t let the BCTF dispute simmer.”

    After all, another strategy-not demonstration of leadership-is implicit in her comments. Interesting times ahead.

  11. I wish BCTF members and their supporters would actually read the official proposal from Iker before commenting. Why is it that the general public is better informed than those in the union?

  12. The future of teaching . . .

    Salman Khan in 2006 began posting his mathematics screencast videos that he produced for his nieces and nephews. People began to come to his website to see the videos. He kept producing more videos. He offered them free of charge.
    By now, you know the story. Today, 10 million students are using his videos. They are using them in school systems and also in homeschooling environments all over the world. The students must speak English. That is the main barrier to entry, other than Internet access. Internet access is going to get cheaper. Learning English as a second language is going to get cheaper. And, before too long, there will be automatic translation programs that can be applied to videos. Khan will someday be teaching 100 million students.

    This is the future . . . the BCTF is the Past !

  13. Who is this “Christy Clark” lady? And why has she come out of hiding?
    She went AWOL when the truckers strike was on, and again when the teacher’s strike was at a full boil. Now she starts chirping about getting a deal done! Too pathetic, this province needs a real leader.
    She picks odd times to show up and pretend she is a leader. Christy, get back on your yacht and let some real leaders in your party try to solve this problem. Don’t worry, I am sure your party will give you a call the next time there is a “Ribbon-Cutting Ceremony” for something.
    In the meantime, pseudo-leaders need to stay out of this problem!

    • “She went AWOL when the truckers strike was on”

      The Docks are a Federal responsibility . . . but you would not know that . . .

      Remember when the Federal Govt, a few years back, told the Employers’ Association that they could not hold the Longshoremen hostage . . . that the Longshoring Union could negotiate with each employer separately? Which the did and the problem ended with a positive outcome. That of course was the evil Conservatives . . .

      • So are you telling me that the BC Truckers Union agreement had nothing to do with the Provincial Government?……..
        “After a day of tense negotiations under threat of a back-to-work order, Premier Christy Clark signed a settlement with union and non-union truckers to end the strike that has snarled shipping at the Port Metro Vancouver for almost a month”

        I can see you defending Liberal policies, but you can’t seriously defend Christy Clark’s Leadership…. she just isn’t a real leader. Not all people in a leadership role are real leaders. She has no leadership skills.

    • Can CKNW and ALL media please stop putting this person in the media? Just like the Kardashians and Lindsay Lohan…. No one cares to hear what she has to say any more.

      Nothing but lies and promises that never some to fruition flow out of her air head.

  14. Public education is not a priority at all for this right wing government. They are determined to undermine, underfund and ultimately destroy public education until all those that can possibly afford to, put their children in private school and relieve them of this burden. Of course, they want to make it look like this is not their true agenda and Christy Clark want to make it appear that they are trying to/want to reach an agreement with teachers, but in truth, they do not want an agreement which funds public schools adequately. They are saving millions at the expense of our children’s education and they couldn’t be more happy that the teachers are on strike…. and that teachers are getting the blame.

    Clark and her minions pretend to want a resolution to this dispute and talk like they do to the media, but, in fact, they would love for this dispute to drag on as much as possible… that will give them an excuse to legislate and, in the end, save them the most money.