Breaking News! NO FINES!

This entry outlines the three key sections of the Supreme Court Ruling (see below). There is very little actually stated in the ruling.

[8] The BCTF may use assets in the ordinary course of business, which would include such things as paying rent, wages to employees and other expenses it would normally pay. It may pay legal fees.

[9] The BCTF is restrained for 30 days from directly or indirectly using its assets to facilitate breach of the court order of October 6, 2005. In particular, the BCTF is enjoined from paying amounts to its members as “strike pay” or to otherwise compensate members for loss relating to breach of the order of October 6, 2005; from providing guarantees or promises to pay to protect members from such losses; from using its books records and offices to permit third parties to facilitate continuing breach of the court order. Either party may apply to extend or shorten this order.

[10] I am appointing a monitor to ensure that this order is obeyed. The monitor will have the following powers and duties:

(a) to have full access to all books and records of the BCTF, including all bank accounts of the BCTF and related entities;

(b) to review, on a daily basis, all payments made by the BCTF and related entities;

(c) to immediately report to the Court any payment or other activity which the monitor considers to be in breach of this order;

(d) to report to the court as requested with respect to the financial position of the BCTF and its compliance with this order;

(e) to appoint legal counsel as required and to obtain such assistance from time to time as the monitor may consider necessary in respect of its powers and duties.

A full text version of the Supreme Court Ruling can be found here.

Sunday’s ruling of contempt can be found here.

See also, CBC Coverage.

Judge orders B.C. teachers’ union to stop strike pay for illegal walkout

Steve Mertl
VANCOUVER (CP) – A B.C. Supreme Court judge rejected demands to levy heavy fines for an illegal strike by the province’s teachers Thursday, opting instead to handcuff the union’s ability to pay pickets.

Justice Brenda Brown essentially took control of the B.C. Teachers’ Federation’s assets and cash for 30 days to ensure neither union funds nor third-party donations can be used to pay strikers their $50-a-day picket pay.

Brown said the federation could still fund day-to-day business operations and its legal expenses but appointed a monitor to oversee the 38,000-member union’s finances to make sure her order is obeyed.

In a 2 1/2-hour hearing, a lawyer for the B.C. Public School Employers’ Association demanded the federation face significant and escalating fines for blatantly defying Brown’s weekend contempt-of-court ruling after the union went on strike Friday.

The B.C. Labour Relations Board ordered them back to work as the provincial legislature passed a law extending the teachers’ current contract until next June with no wage increase.

But federation president Jinny Sims said teachers would stay out of the classroom until the government negotiated a deal.

School Boards Backing Teachers!

Prince Rupert School Board joins a growing number of districts call upon the government to withdraw Bill 12 and to allow meaningful negotiations to begin. From Vancouver, New Westminster, Vancouver Island, to the north coast school board trustees are telling the government to get with it and negotiate!

Source: Prince Rupert District Teachers Union

Here’s a list of some of the school boards backing teachers:
Vancouver, Surrey, Coquitlam, Greater Victoria, Central Okanagan, Burnaby, Vernon, New Westminster, Sunshine Coast, Powell River, Boundary, Prince Rupert, Sooke, Saanich, Quesnel, Gulf Islands, Cowichan, Alberni, Qualicum, Campbell River, Fraser Cascade, Fort Nelson, Southeast Kootenay, Revelstoke, Nicola-Similkameen, and Vancouver Island North.
Prince Rupert Teachers Backed by Trustees

Last night, teachers were joined by parents and community members in a rally outside the School Board Office to show support for teachers across the province. Messages of encouragement were presented by various organizations, including the B.C. Federation of Labour, the Local Labour Council, and the Retired Teachers Association.

Following the rally, Marty Bowles, along with Raegan Sawka, Erin Greene, and Joyce Dundas, presented the Trustees with a picture of our schools and why teachers have been forced to take a stand against Bill 12. Also in attendance during the presentation were a number of teachers, and our local MLA, Gary Coons.

The following motions were passed by the Board of Trustees:

To acknowledge and support the teachers of Prince Rupert and the rest of British Columbia in their determination to bargain a fair and reasonable collective agreement that addresses both working and learning conditions and salaries.
To call on the provincial government to set aside Bill 12 and allow meaningful negotiations to begin
To communicate the previous resolutions to the media and the provincial government, other school boards and the BCSTA, and BCPSEA.
To urge the government to return the only system that has worked efficiently and effectively in this province –that is local full scope bargaining.

The Board of Trustees will meet later in the week to discuss a motion to close all schools in School District 52 until such a time as teachers have voted in favour of returning to work.