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Teacher Newsmagazine Volume 18, Number 7, May/June 2006

Teachers vote to maintain affiliation with labour

Teachers voted to join the Canadian Labour Congress and maintain membership in the BC Federation of Labour.

"It’s an historic decision by the teachers of BC to take our rightful place with the rest of the organized labour movement," said BCTF President Jinny Sims.

Teachers joined the BC Federation of Labour for a three-year trial period and, after assessing the results of those three years, teachers voted 78.2% to affiliate on a permanent basis. Of the 17,231 valid ballots cast, 13,483 voted yes and 3,748 voted no.

Teachers voted in locals around the province on April 25 and 26, 2006.

In 2003 when teachers voted to join the BC Federation of Labour on a trial basis there were 16,972 valid ballots cast with 9,864 (58.1%) voting yes and 7,108 (41.9) voting no.

This last vote is a much stronger message from more members as teachers recognize that union leaders and rank-and-file members of the labour movement support public education and public school teachers.

Polling consistently shows that union households are among the most supportive of healthy, well-funded public schools. That support could not have been better illustrated than through the support for our job action last fall.

– Peter Owens

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