Apologies for the delay! The AGM will be hosted in Dempster Pavilion room 310 tomorrow (Thurs Oct 8) at 5 PM. If you missed your department’s union orientation, we will be hosting a catchup orientation at 4:30 in the same room.


Agenda includes the President’s annual report, an overview of how to vote in the Federal election on Oct 19, and opening nominations for the CUPE 2278 executive.

October 8, 2015 AGM

ANNUAL GENERAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING! We will be holding our Fall AGM on October 8th beginning at 5 pm. For anyone who missed their departmental orientation we will also be holding a general orientation session just before the AGM at 4:30 pm.

Location still TBA, but will be announced when we hear back from campus room bookings.

CUPE 116, 2278 and 2950 issue joint letter to UBC BoG Chair John Montalbano

The Presidents of the three CUPE Locals at UBC issued a joint letter to the UBC Board of Governors Chair, John Montalbano, demanding greater transparency surrounding the situation that led to the Board’s recent announcement about the resignation of UBC’s President Arvind Gupta.  We believe that as a publicly funded entity, the public has a right to know why the President of UBC resigned 13 months into a 5 year contract. The search process (estimated to have cost about $430,000 according to internal sources), contractual payouts, interim presidential salary and the hiring of PR firm Kirk and Co to handle the media fallout from this situation (and related issue of alleged violations of Academic Freedom- see below) are hugely expensive in a period of supposed austerity. As tax payers and tuition payers, we feel we are owed a more substantial explanation from the Board and an end to the rampant speculation that is both embarrassing and demoralizing for those who live and work at UBC.

Read our full letter here: CUPE @ UBC letter

On the Academic Freedom piece of this controversy (see links below), we believe it is vitally important that UBC be a place where students and faculty can research freely without fear of punitive action by the administration or government hushing critical opinions. As such we look forward to the University’s transparent and thorough inquiry into this situation. In the mean time, here are some important readings on the subject that help frame our understanding of the situation.

Jennifer Berdahl, UBC Profesor in the Sauder School of Business

Jennifer Berdahl’s 1st blog post “Did Arvind Gupta Lose the Masculinity Contest”

Jennifer Berdahl’s 2nd blog post alleging Board Chair violates academic freedom

Reactions from the UBC Faculty Association and UBC BoG

August 19: UBC Faculty Association Executive calls for Mr. Montalbano’s resignation

August 18: Montalbano speaks in his own defense

August 18: UBCFA Correspondence to Angela Redish, Acting President and Vice-Chancellor, Provost & Vice-President Academic pro tem

August 18: Media Statement from the Chair of UBC, John Montalbano

August 17: Link to UBCFA Notice from the Executive to the Membership, August 17, 2015

August 14: Read the response to the UBCFA’s concerns from UBC’s Board of Governors here.

August 10: In reaction to President Arvind Gupta’s sudden resignation, UBCFA President Mark Mac Lean sent a letter to all of our members on August 10th. View the UBCFA’s correspondence by following this link.

Updates from Local 2278

Bargaining Dates!

The biggest news we have is that we will be heading to the bargaining table with our employer in the next two weeks! Component II will go to the table on Tuesday March 24 and Component I will go the next week on March 30 and April 1. We’re getting all of our proposals and language prepped and are looking forward to getting to work on the next Collective Agreement!

U of T and York TA Unions on strike

We have been following the strikes out at U of T and York closely and have been in touch with both executives to offer our support and best wishes. If you want to send them some greetising in solidarity or find out the latest info, visit CUPE 3902 Bargaining and CUPE 3903.

Transit Plebiscite

Ballots for the transit plebiscite are being mailed out over the next few weeks. We encourage all members who are eligible to make sure that they are heard in this incredibly important vote! Ballots must be received by Elections BC on Friday May 29th before 8pm!

Q. Am I eligible and how do I register to vote in the plebiscite?

A. You can vote in the plebiscite if you are:

  • A Canadian citizen
  • 18 years of age or older on or before May 29, 2015
  • a resident of B.C. for a least six months on or before May 29, 2015
  • registered to vote in B.C.
  • living in Metro Vancouver

You can register to vote or update your voter registration by calling Elections BC at 1-800-661-8683 (toll-free) or online at elections.bc.ca/ovr or in-person at a Plebiscite Service Office (open April 13, visit ‘Where’ for locations). You need your Social Insurance Number or your BC driver’s licence number to register or update by phone or online.


Q. What is the voting period for the plebiscite?

A. The voting period is from Monday, March 16 to 8 p.m. on Friday, May 29, 2015.

Q. Is there a cut-off date to ask for a voting package?

A. Yes. Voters have until midnight on Friday, May 15, 2015 to ask for a plebiscite voting package.

Q. Is there a time restriction for how long you have lived in Metro Vancouver to be eligible to vote in the plebiscite?

A. No. You must live in Metro Vancouver.

Q. Is there some way to vote in the plebiscite other than by mail?

A. No. The 2015 Metro Vancouver Transportation and Transit Plebiscite is a Vote-by-Mail plebiscite.

A voting package will be mailed to registered voters in Metro Vancouver between March 16 and March 27. If you are eligible to vote and do not get a voting package in the mail, call Elections BC at 1-800-661-8683 to register or to update your voter registration and ask for a voting package to be mailed to you. You have until midnight on Friday, May 15, 2015 to ask for a voting package.

Elections BC is opening nine Plebiscite Service Offices throughout Metro Vancouver on Monday, April 13. At a Plebiscite Service Office you can register to vote, ask for a voting package and drop off your completed ballot package.

Q. I am a registered voter living in Metro Vancouver, but will be away during the voting period. How can I vote in the plebiscite?

A. Call Elections BC at 1-800-661-8683 (toll-free in North America) or 250-387-5305 and ask for a voting package to be mailed to you at the address you will be at during the voting period.

Your completed ballot package must be received by Elections BC before 8 p.m. on Friday, May 29, 2015. The yellow return envelope is pre-paid postage if mailed within Canada. If you are mailing the package from outside of Canada, you will be required to include appropriate postage.

Q. I live in temporary housing in Metro Vancouver while working or going to school. How can I vote in the plebiscite?

A. You can vote in the plebiscite if you are:

  • a Canadian citizen
  • 18 years of age or older on or before May 29, 2015
  • a resident of B.C. for a least six months on or before May 29, 2015
  • registered to vote in B.C.
  • living in Metro Vancouver

You must register to vote or update your voter registration with your Metro Vancouver residential address.

Q. English is my second language. Does the voting package come in other languages?

A. Your voting package is printed in English. Translations of the voting package are available in the following 17 languages: Arabic, Chinese-simplified, Chinese-traditional, Dutch, Farsi, French, German, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Punjabi, Russian, Spanish, Tagalog and Vietnamese.

Q. Does my completed ballot need to be post-marked by May 29 in order to be counted?

A. Your completed ballot package must be received by Elections BC, either through the mail or at a Plebisicte Service Office by 8 p.m. on Friday, May 29, 2015. Any ballot package received after this time, even if post-marked, will not be counted. If you are submitting your ballot package close to the May 29 deadline, please ensure you allow sufficient mailing time, or to be certain, drop your completed ballot package off at a Plebiscite Service Office.

The yellow return envelope is pre-paid if mailed within Canada. If you are mailing the package from outside of Canada, you are responsible for including the approporiate postage.

Feb 2015 CUPE 2278 Membership Meeting Executive Report

Since being elected in October 2014, the current Executive has been working on several key projects in the following areas: day to day business, contract negotiation preparation, bylaws and executive policy manual development, and fostering stronger internal and external relations.

Day to day business

  1. In order to move forward with our new Executive, some training and education took place to acquaint new executive members with the day to day operation of the local within the UBC community, the CUPE community and the broader labour movement.
  2. The following committees or positions were staffed with members of the Executive and component committees
    1. Bylaw review- Trish E, Ed, Soheil, Barb, Trish F
    2. Bargaining Preparation Committee- Trish E, Ed, Adrienne, Carter,
    3. Social Media and Webmaster- Adrian and Trish E.
    4. Health and Safety- Adrienne and Ben
    5. Grievance Committee- meets on an ad hoc basis
    6. Staff Contract renegotiation- Trish E, Ed, Barb and Trish F.
    7. Privacy Officer- Ben
    8. VDLC Point Person- Adrienne
  3. A 5 year contract between CUPE local 2278 and our staff members Peter Lane and Bridget Donald (UNIFOR 467) has been negotiated and completed. The contract anticipates matching modest wage improvements in line with what we achieve at our own bargaining table in the coming months.
  4. Component I grievances continue to be handled by our Business Agent, Peter Lane.

Contract negotiation preparation,

  1. Ed Kroc has taken the reins of bargaining preparation and in consultation with other executive members and Business Manager Peter Lane, has developed a list of areas for potential improvement in our contract. Dates are not yet set with the employer to meet for contract negotiations, however once the contract committee is elected, preparation will begin in earnest with the intention of meeting with the Employer in the next few weeks.

Bylaws and executive policy manual development,

  1. this committee has worked extensively to bring our bylaws in line with the CUPE national constitution and currently awaits approval from the National office.

Fostering stronger internal and external relations.

  1. Meetings with the other CUPE local presidents at UBC have been fairly regular and a very positive relationship is developing between CUPE 116, 2278 and 2950. Moving toward bargaining, this reinforced solidarity will be an important part of resisting concessions at the bargaining table.
  2. President Trish Everett has regularly attended meetings of the CUPE Universities Committee, CUPE Joint Universities and Colleges Committee, the CUPE University Coordinated Bargaining Committee, the CUPE Young Workers Task Force and casual meetings with executive members from SFU’s TA union, the TSSU.
  3. Adrienne and Ben have actively participated on the University Health and Safety Committee and made reports to the executive about the university-wide initiatives discussed there and opportunities for cooperation.
  4. Several executive members have been actively in touch and participated in the #IAmAStudent movement fighting increased international tuition and housing fees.
  5. Trish Everett has met with AMS President Tanner Bokor and GSS President Collum Connoly about issues concerning our local members as well as areas in which CUPE 2278 can cooperate better with the AMS/GSS.
  6. Ed Kroc has recently completed a contract with CUPE National to investigate precarious labour in the University sector in BC. His report and recommendations will be used by CUPE to help combat the rising number of temporary, short term and contract labour in BC universities.
  7. Soheil Kianzad completed an introductory video explaining the work that CUPE 2278 does on campus to advocate for our membership. It is posted at cupe2278.ca and elsewhere.


Respectfully Submitted on behalf of the Executive of CUPE 2278,



Trish Everett


Contract Committee Nominations Received

Adrienne Levay

Adrienne is a second year doctoral student in the Faculty of Land and Food
Systems whose research interests include public policy and institutional
food systems. She has held a teaching assistant/course coordinator position
with LFS 250 since she began her graduate degree and is deeply committed to
fair and dignified working conditions and wages that reflect our levels of
education and experience and allow us to maintain a healthy life-work
balance. She looks forward to representing you, the members, at the
negotiating table as a part of an experienced and enthusiastic collective
bargaining committee.

Carter Fang

As an undergraduate student and a new member to CUPE 2278, I hope to
improve working conditions for my fellow graduate and undergraduate
teaching assistants alike. With the upcoming changes concerning
undergraduate TAs, it will be necessary to have undergraduate
representation on the committee. Although my time with the union has been
short, I am confident in my qualities of critical thinking and
perseverance, derived from my studies as an engineer. My experiences as
both a CUPE 2278 executive member and a teaching assistant in the
Mathematics faculty will enable me to well-represent the needs of my peers
and do what is required to achieve positive change.

Trish Everett

Trish Everett is a 5th year Doctoral Candidate in Theatre and Film and is
the President of CUPE Local 2278. She served on the bargaining committee in
the previous round of bargaining, attended the CUPE National Bargaining
Conference in 2013, and has attended the CUPE Universities Coordinated
Bargaining Committee and CUPE Universities Committee meetings regularly
since the summer of 2012. She has experience at the table with UBC HR and
in mediation at the BC Labour Board. She believes that bargaining is at the
heart of the work we do as a union and intends to work with the contract
committee to ensure we are as successful as we can be in this round of