DiverseCity community workers on strike Nov. 22 in Surrey

VANCOUVER, Nov. 21, 2012 /CNW/ - Community workers at DiverseCity Community Resources Society will be on strike Thursday November 22 in the Newton Village area of Surrey, including at the not-for-profit's main office and at the intersection of King George Hwy. and 74th Avenue.

DiverseCity is going on strike to send a clear message to the B.C. government: stop putting vulnerable families last!

The B.C. Government and Service Employees' Union (BCGEU) represents 133 DiverseCity workers who provide family services, community development, language programs, immigrant and career services in a variety of languages.

Since 2004, the B.C. Liberal government has cut $300 million in funding for programs that support vulnerable families, recent immigrants, the developmentally disabled, at-risk youth, and children and infants in community-based programs across the province.

Community workers across the province have faced a decade of declining wages. Starting wages for caring professionals are below the living wage. Residential care workers now start at $15.54 an hour, down from $16.83 ten years ago. That's a wage cut of one-fifth, factoring in inflation.

Since October 16, rotating strike action in community services has impacted agencies around British Columbia, including in Vancouver, Kamloops, Prince George Victoria, Nelson, Vernon, Williams Lake, and many others.

The following DiverseCity locations in the Newton Village area of Surrey will be picketed and completely struck on Thursday from 8am to 9pm. Picketers will be visible at these locations and at the intersection of King George Hwy. and 74th Avenue:

  • DiverseCity Main Office - #1107 - 7330 137th Street, Surrey, B.C.

  • DiverseCity Community Development - #1113 - 7330 137th Street, Surrey, B.C.

  • DiverseCity Career Services - #202 - 7380 137th Street, Surrey, B.C.

There are 15,000 unionized workers in the community social services sector, two-thirds of whom are represented by the BCGEU. Other sectoral unions include CUPE, HEU, HSA and five others. Together, the unions make up the Community Social Services Bargaining Association.


SOURCE: B.C. Government and Service Employees' Union

For further information:

Oliver Rohlfs, BCGEU Communications, (778)318-9164, oliver.rohlfs@bcgeu.ca
Strike information leaflet