40 thoughts on “Poll: Do you agree with the BCTF’s call for binding arbitration?

  1. silvercharm

    I’d like to vote on this , but find the question too vague. I might like the fact the BCTF is seeking binding arbitration on some of the issues, but I might not agree with how this was done in that n ot all the issues were included. I might think that a general strike is the best way forward out of the wilderness, in so many ways, and therefore vote no, to an initiative I really liked. So I’m stuck between voting either way.

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  2. workforfun

    Get it all out in the open (as much as we can) and let a third party mediate.
    BC provincial government in now in a lose/lose situation where they are damned if they do and damned if they don’t.
    I fully expect the BCTF to take this all the way as they have previous court decisions to back up their claim against the government.
    There is no question that the BC provincial government is out and out trying to “break” the union. This is just the tip of the iceberg and future wages and conditions will hinge on the outcome.
    Lets us not forget that the TFW situation as this is all affecting the right for a decent and fair wage and working conditions.

    Thanks

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  3. Steve Cooley

    Way back when school boards had some autonomy, the contract negotiation process was dictated from on high. First, the contacts were based on the calendar year, not the school year for reasons that I never knew. Dates were dictated for start of negotiations, mediation and arbitration. The end date was close to December so what ever was negotiated or mediated or arbitrated could be implemented before January. Negotiations had to concluded or abandoned by a set date, if things went to mediation they had to done by a set date, about a month after the negotiation deadline. If mediation failed, arbitration had to done by that December or late November date.

    The government did not like the fact that more contracts were settled by arbitration than mediation or negotiations. The teachers did not like the fact that learning conditions were rarely addressed in contracts. Bill Vanderzalm changed all that and set up the conditions that brought about or current system.

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  4. e.a.f.

    You bet I want binding arbitration. Silvercharm, a general strike is not going to solve anything. Remember the early 1980s.

    The lieberals don’t appear to be in any hurry to end this dispute, so its best done by a third party. Each side can present their position and then let someone else decide. We have heard Fassbender say he doesn’t want to leave such an important matter up to a third party. If it was so important this would have been over and done with. The lieberals keeping talking about a settlement having to be “affordable”. If things need to be “affordable” the M.L.A.s can start by giving up their $12K a yr housing allowance, no receipts required and Premier Clark and the rest of them can start flying coach and using their cars to get around instead of planes.

    If its money which is required, make sure corporate taxes in this province are 12% and put the extra 2% into education and health.

    How can this province not afford decent education for kids? They are the future of this province or do the lieberals plan on bringing in more foreign workers to do all the “technical” work in B.C. If the lieberals were taking in over $3 Billion a year in royalties and taxes in 2005/6, from the oil/gas industry, and let it drop to $500Million in 2012/13, even though output increased, the lieberals aren’t taking care of business. If they made sure the money came in at 2005/6 levels this province could afford to pay for the kids education. Not everyone can afford $25K or $30K a year like Premier Christy Clark to send her kid to St. George’s.

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    1. Marge

      But the government will not mediate, arbitrate or legislate. What’s the only solution? General strike….. unless you’ve got another solution. The libs in particular Clark don’t give a damn about your kids because hers is in school…..

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      1. e.a.f.

        General strikes rarely if ever work. One, the government can legislate the end to them. Second, most people won’t participate. This isn’t France.

        The government wants this strike to go on as long as possible and then introduce an American style voucher system. That will bring in private schools and be the end of the BCTF. Its part of something called the Shock Doctrine and it works quite well, for those using it. The victims, not so much. Give this until about Nov. and the lieberals will do what they have wanted all along.

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  5. Richard

    In the 70’s and early 80’s binding arbitration held both parties feet to the fire in teacher bargaining. There were no strikes or lockouts. Awards were based on market conditions and logical arguments.

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  6. Jean Oudy

    I’m shocked that so many don’t want binding arbitration. What are you guys so afraid of? A fair deal being achieved? Isn’t a fair deal for all what arbitration is all about? After hearing Fassbender’s pathetic reasoning for not wanting it tells me the Gov’t knows they would loose again in the “what is fair” department. The Gov’t side is not being honest about why they are dragging this out and yes they could find the money to provide a good public education system if they wanted to. They just have to make the tough choices as they decide what the tax breaks will be for their campaign contributors and other in other discretionary spending.

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    1. G. Barry Stewart

      Don’t be too shocked, Jean. It could well be the “Christy’s media influencers” at work.

      Despite the claim that “repeat votes have been blocked,” there are pretty basic settings to one’s browser that allow for multiple votes. (I couldn’t resist trying it, and voted 5x in about a minute from my desktop computer.)

      Most on-line votes are suspect because they can’t handle the settings which I cryptically refer to.

      The best multiple-vote blocker I’ve seen recently was on the Tyee. After voting, you had to give your e-mail address. Few people have more than one or a few e-mail addresses.

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  7. Gay hawley

    Yes. You can tell who is not moving in these negotiations, and this is an avenue that can move the gov’t forward. If the gov’t is afraid of the terms of a wage increase, it’s obvious to me, their offer is way too low. It is, after all, a neutral third party who decides.

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  8. Julie

    Christy Clark has only a high school education, therefore, I do not believe Christy is running this province. Christy’s governing, is very similar to Harper’s. Christy and Harper prorogued Parliament and Legislature nearly, at the same time. Christy hadn’t called Legislature, since she became Leader. So, to me Christy doesn’t pass the smell test and BC is becoming more smelly by the day.

    Christy’s two election lies, 100,000 jobs for BC people. And her dreary families first mantra. The jobs to build the LNG plant in Prince Rupert, were given to China. BC’s ship building contract, was given to Poland. When the price of coal is recovered? There will be thousands of Chinese brought over for, Christy and Harper’s Northern BC mining plan. The Courts had also rewarded the 200 mine jobs near Tumbler Ridge, to China as well. Jason Kenny out and out blatantly lied regarding his, TFW program. I started tracking the resource job postings, for over a year now. I e-mailed Kenny and called him, the liar he really is. Foreigners send their money back home. That money isn’t even spent in BC nor in Canada.

    Then there is Christy’s, $475K credit card. Our money she thieved for her, economic and job action plan ads, that don’t exist. Very similar to Harper thieving our money for his bogus lies on, the billboard of Hockey Night in Canada. His economic and job action plans, didn’t exist either.

    Because, the Campbell/Clark BC Liberals work for Harper. They thieved and sold everything they laid their soiled hands on, out of this province. Christy and her whinging of no money, just doesn’t cut it. I support our Teachers.

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    1. Scotty on Denman

      I would only add that in my view Christy’s way down the smarts list from Steve and, since I consider Harper to have been (contrary to Conservative theology) anything but a “shrewd political strategist”, that’s pretty far down. In comparison, every one of Harper’s political rivals, barring the hapless Bloc, has demonstrated impressive shrewdness: Mulcair, despite Layton’s death, Trudeau, despite the baggage, and May, despite her singularly small caucus—they all got there and will all likely hold their own, if not advance—all by smarts neither Christy or Steve seem to have.

      In my view Christy’s not a Premier, she’s “BC’s number one booster”, as she herself described it—an advertisement for a product, not the product itself. Meaning somebody smarter is running the show, only not in the public interest.

      In contrast, Harper is definitely running his own show which is why he’s had so many spectacular failures, convictions, contempt findings and legislation shit-canned by the courts. But that’s just his problem, isn’t it? Sycophancy! —there’s doubtlessly smarter in the Reformacons, just that Steve doesn’t know about it and wouldn’t believe it if he did. That makes him different than Christy in many ways. Christy can only one-up in one way, but it’s a big one: she’s occupying a more powerful office, even if Steve doesn’t believe it is; she doesn’t really know it either, which is not really a good thing.

      At least we can see Harper; we can’t really see who’s running BC and what little we can glean is grim in the extreme.

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      1. Lulymay

        Scotty, I always appreciate your erudite comments. I would add that although Christy positions herself as “BC’s #1 booster”, I think she is really Christy’s #1 booster. I have encountered so many men who talk about her as “such a foxy lady” and apparently voted for her party on that principle. What to do? As to who is really running BC, we can only guess but there are some obvious, such as the beneficiaries of greedy Gordo’s reign of terror. Some names are probably McLean from CNR, and of course the always ready Patrick Kinsella, as well as Gwyn Morgan of SNC Lavalin, the guy from Mt Polley for starters. We can also include groups such as the wine operatives in the Okanagan (which is why we could boycott Okanagan wines right now) and, of course, the local TV media (Glow-ball comes to mind) and Vancouver newspapers. The comprendes are probably more widespread than most political observers understand, but you get the picture, I’m sure.

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    1. They’re no longer called PAB…….Factbender or Clark renamed them ‘digital influencers’ Check the website, fill out a fake profile, and in the ‘suggestion box’ type “Resign now!”, or something even more to the point.

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  9. Gary T

    According to what I heard, the teachers were not asking for true binding arbitration. It cannot be binding if one party gets to hold a vote on whether or not they will accept the decision of the arbitrator or not.

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    1. G. Barry Stewart

      You have the time-line out of whack, Gary. The idea was: Government would agree to binding arbitration, then BCTF would recommend to its members that they should vote YES to go back to work. Once back to work, the arbitration hearings would proceed — and whatever the arbitrator decided would be upheld.

      If teachers voted to NOT go back to work, the arbitration would not proceed.

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  10. Tessa Heisler

    I think Clark wants blood, bankruptcies and nervous breakdowns. I hope Liberal supporters are ashamed of what they voted for. Non-voters, you too. Enjoy paying more for education out of pocket than your taxes ever costed.

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    1. Scotty on Denman

      Financial support from out-of-province unions will bolster some resolve. Knowing that they are marginally holding the better hand is going to be thin gruel otherwise. This is definitely a game of chicken where the teachers know time to be the enemy—but also know that ultimately the BC Liberals stand to lose the most in the end. That’s an important fact, one that loosens sympathies that can help cash-strapped teachers. It’s the lack of cash, not the time or the issues, the teachers are most vulnerable to.

      My biggest worry is the government has wound itself into an impossible situation where they have little to lose by fertilizing perfidy with public funds which we so graciously gifted them.

      I’ll admit I’ve often been impressed (not in a good way mostly) with Christy’s supreme self-confidence—boorish, brash, unabashed—but reliable (I think that characteristic actually helped her win last time, reliably Christy, whereas Dix looked comparatively unreliable by not parrying with her). But these days, when we’ve been treated to a few rare peeks at our mostly cloistered Premier, the strain on her face looks palpable. Now, whether this arises from not getting the right kind of toys for her school-chums in the Premier’s Office, or getting shooed out of the kitchen by the real masters of BC, I can’t know—but she definitely doesn’t look like she’s having as much fun as she used to. Maybe it’s because, out of the BC Liberal pack, she came in last place, having to steal the safest seat in the province to assure her a by-election seat in the Assembly. That’s gotta hurt a natural majorette—maybe bring back some sad memories of lesser political days at SFU—I dunno, but something’s up, for sure.

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      1. bcwaterboy

        I think you’re on to something Scotty and it’s certainly becoming clearer as this sad state of affairs unfolds before us, that Christy is not really the one running the province. That said, I think that public education is her baby and she is the one making most of the calls behind the scenes. LNG and the economy, not bloodly likely.

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        1. Lulymay

          Again, Scotty, I think Christy is on her way out (which she thought she could wiggle and jiggle her way into staying). Just wait until the municipal elections are concluded. Have a look at who is just as attractive and much smarter: namely Diane Watts. I think the men in grey suits have her in the waiting and she will be our next unelected premier. Smarter, but still run by the same grey men.

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  11. Heather Lapierre

    Yes, but it absolutely won’t happen. The Liberals will not allow anyone to gain control of government purse strings. Besides, CC has a plan and from what I’ve heard, we are NOT going to like it!

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  12. Scotty on Denman

    It’s like crossing a game of chicken with a boxing match. The teachers, though in the right, are matched to the BC Liberals, in the wrong but tipping the scales heavily with perfidy-fertilizer sourced from public coffers (oh that they would be be forced to detail these misappropriations in a judicial setting!) —the problem for either side is getting to the next bell. The BC Liberals are looking for a knockout because they stand the most to lose in the long run. Though binding arbitration may not be a knockout, it gets the teachers through another harrowing round and may, might, offer some advantage in public opinion/support in subsequent rounds. The BC Liberals are of course handcuffed by the original sin of tearing up that damn contract a dozen years ago. They may have been chuffed at their ability to drag out court challenges for almost a decade, but the subsequent trial and appeal (at provincial level) failed to go their way—which is why they need to hang on till their next appeal flies or not. Imagine if this wasn’t really all Christy’s fault, right from that day more than a dozen years ago. If it weren’t an prancing majorette’s existential hobbyhorse , mightn’t have saner heads calculated the pending, inevitable losses and thrown in the towel by now. Because of Christy’s override (probably one of the few she insists upon), it’s been nothing but good money after bad, at Christy’s “Families First” discretion, at our kids’ expense—in ways incalculable.

    It’s not so important how the appeal goes as it is surviving each round-by-round game of chicken. For now the teachers can look reasonable with their proposal—thin gruel, though. I think at some point, barring arbitration or a settlement, the BC Liberals will not be able to resist pressure from even their own members to legislate back-to-work. They’ve got a very narrow window where they can respond to the appeal (in the event of a timely decision which we shouldn’t discount) or get under the wire of writing off the school year. I just don’t think the forty-dollar-bill gonna make ‘er come—just won’t do it, neither the fist-pumping of private schools—-it’s the loss of a semester or year that will turn everyone across the board against the government.

    Or is this just a nightmare of a dystopian dance-a-thon? Don’t you believe it! If you support teachers, support a teacher while they struggle through this on behalf of our kids. We only need ask on whose behalf do the BC Liberals do what they do. Are they more important than our kids? Why?

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  13. Marge

    What a wacky weekend we have experienced. First we have Fassbender saying no to third party negotiations. Meanwhile what does he consider Peter Cameron to be? Of course Cameron would say no as he’d be losing thousands of cash for
    doing you know absolutely nothing at Factbender’s behest. Then we have the village idiot saying he wants to um negotiate hard (Clark’s old buzz word) but all that means he wants to run and hide so he can keep the cash and see that your kids never see the light of day in a classroom this fall.

    Then we have the MSM again spouting the exact same story (they must read each other’s minds – not much to read there with the limited intelligence they have) about the doctors years ago as the no no for arbitration. Then we now have the MSM with the confusing titles. BC wants arbitration. As if it’s all of us. The GOVERNMENT is at fault but hey never accuse Clark of being in bed with the MSM. She might be forced to admit it. What a bunch of fools do you think the public is?

    BTW don’t you think it’s just a tiny tacky for Clark’s ex Marrisen (plus a troll friend) to be on twitter attacking child singer Raffi for supporting teachers and kids? When Raffi is seen as the enemy boy we’ve got them on the run don’t we? Next week who knows? They might be after some Sesame Street character for being too pro teacher.

    Only in wacky BC….no body with any sanity could make this stuff up but there you have it.

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      1. Marge

        I am sure Mark Marrissen and his trolls will attack her for attempting to keep kids happy or learning or just about anything. Or try to find some obscure connection to the NDP….

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  14. Les

    No. The teachers deserve to negotiate the Best deal they can. Air Canada employees have a long history of arbitrated deals and all were to the employers benefit. Many employers have numerous unions to negotiate with, seldom is the same wage and benefit package agreed upon by all parties. Why does Christy Clark feel Her government as the “employer” deserves to be treated differently than other parties involved in negots. Binding Arbitration is a polite way of taking away the right to settle a contract between an employer and their employees. Both Parties need to stop using the press to gain sympathy for their cause, Demands and offers are not written in stone, hence negotiations Grow Up and get the Deal done that’s what you are paid for

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  15. Marge

    I still think the only solution to all of this is a GENERAL STRIKE. That’s the only think Clark understands and nothing less than a few days hits at the economy would solve a few issues for her. I also can’t understand why retailers like Pattison haven’t set her aside and had a few words with the lady. If 40,000 plus people (and CUPE) aren’t shopping doesn’t that hurt? Then where are the groups such as the Indo Canadian leaders having a wee word with her? Do they prefer the forty bucks over school? And what about those high school students – too lazy to care? Occupy the bloody schools for goodness sake and cause havoc – that’s the only thing those leaders understand. And aren’t there one or two or three or four Liberal MLAs who think this is wrong? I can’t for the life of me understand how people are so complicit in all of this. Then I was thinking if Harper wants to gain seats in BC wouldn’t he be having a wee word with Clark? I can’t see any one but the NDP sweeping BC for MPs with what Clark is doing to destroy public education but maybe I am wrong there too with what is going on here. I also can’t for the life of me understand why the Lamestream media is so in bed with Clark. I also can’t understand why Jim Sinclair hasn’t pulled the dock workers and all the other unions that help make this province strong. Maybe , I should go and read a little history about prewar Germany and how everyone was complicit and complacent there too. After watching Clark’s ex last night go after a child icon like Raffi, none of us are safe. This has so far reaching components it is scary.

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    1. e.a.f.

      MARG, general strikes only work if everyone participates. Trust me, they won’t. Jim Sinclair hasn’t pulled anyone because there is no one to pull. The Long Shoreman’s union don’t belong to the B.C. Fed. As to the rest of the unions, which do, they remember 1982. Most who participated were unions and now only 32% of the workforce in B.C. is unionized.

      What went on in prewar Germany was quite different from what is going on in B.C. right now. Check with people who lived through that.

      A general strike will not effect the economy that much. Once its over, everyone will be back shopping and catching up. Pattison isn’t going to pull anyone aside. The CEO of the Pattison Group, is Glen Clark. You might want to consider this: would Christy even listen to anyone? No she would not. She listens to those in oil/gas/tree removal and they don’t care about what goes on in this province as long as they can continue to make money for their shareholders. Most of these companies aren’t “B.C. companies”, as they once were.

      A general strike wouldn’t work because not that many people in this province have children. Most who do, can’t afford 5 minutes away from the job, let alone participate in a General strike. One good way to deal with Christy and Fassbender is something that was done in 1982, you “dog’ the politicians every where they go in public. Follow them, chant at them, picket them, but even that is difficult to do. For it to be “successful” you need a lot of people and they just aren’t there anymore.

      My solution to this labour dispute: go out and vote in the next election and vote for anyone but the b.c. lieberals.

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