Top bureaucrat reveals offer to B.C. government workers

Photo: Darren Stone, Times Colonist

The Deputy Minister of B.C.’s public service has revealed the government’s latest offer to the B.C. General Employees Union. 

The union, which represents 33,000 government workers, is preparing to strike after talks broke off. 

“Under this offer, the average BCGEU employee would receive wage increases of up to 10.99% over the three-year term of the collective agreement,” said Bobbi Sadler in a memo to staff on July 5. 

“With the potential of future strike action, I think there is value in sharing the monetary offer the employer has tabled with the BCGEU with you directly so you have that full context of where negotiations stand.”

In year one of the proposed agreement, workers would receive a $2,500 lump sum for working at least 50% full-time and pro-rated for those working less. 

A 3.76% pay raise would be retroactive to April 1. That consists of a 25 cent-per-hour increase and a 3% general wage increase. 

“The value of the flat $0.25 per hour equals an approximate increase of 0.76% for the average BCGEU employee,” Sadler wrote.

Next April, another 3.23% average pay hike, which would be 25 cents-per-hour and 2.5% general wage increase. In the last year of the proposed three-year deal, another increase of up to 4%. 

“The increase of up to 4% consists of a guaranteed 3% general wage increase (effective the first pay period after April 1, 2024) and up to a further 1% increase that would be payable after February 1, 2025 if inflation exceeds 9.5% during the three calendar years beginning in 2022,” Sadler wrote. 

Sadler and the Public Service Agency are continuing to negotiate essential service levels with the BCGEU, which must be agreed before any strike. 

“We remain open to resuming bargaining when the union’s bargaining committee wishes to do so,” Sadler said.