Category Archives: Site Updates/Additions

Annual General Membership Meeting

Unifor Local 830M

Annual General Membership Meeting

Wednesday, November 18th, 2015

Multi Purpose Room 1 at Creekside Community Centre has been book for meetings at 10 AM and 12:30 PM.


On The Agenda:

  1. Update on presentations to the CRTC by Unifor prior to January public hearings
  2. Wealth Accumulation Q&A (Sunlife to present on Tuesday, Nov 24th at 10 & 1:30)
  3. Changes to the Collective Agreement Q&A
  4. Union Elections for
  • Vice President
  • Secretary
  • Chief Steward
  • Women’s Advocate

Please consider helping out in one of these important roles.


Local by-laws require that you notify someone on the current executive board prior to the day of the election of your intent to run for office.

Vice President: vacant (elected odd years)
By-Law: 2.2.2 Vice President
The Vice-President shall act in place and instead of the Local President in the event of the latter’s inability or refusal to act.
Secretary: Cindy Leong (elected odd years)
By-Law: 2.2.3 Secretary
(i)  The Local Secretary shall conduct the correspondence pertaining to the business of the Local and shall keep the official records of the Local.
(ii)  The Secretary shall give notice of all General, Special and Executive Board Meetings.
(iii)  The Secretary shall record minutes at all General, Special and Executive Board Meetings
Treasurer: Gerald Christenson (elected even years)
By-Law: 2.2.4 Treasurer
The Treasurer shall have charge and custody of, and be responsible for, all funds and securities of the Local, receive and give receipts for all monies due and payable to the Local and deposit such monies in the name of the Local with such banks or other financial institutions authorized as depositories by the Local Executive Board.
Chief Steward: vacant (elected odd years)
By-Law: 2.2.5 Chief Steward
(1)The Chief Steward shall assist the President and Vice-President in the administration of the collective agreement.
Stephen Hawkins
Local President, Unifor 830 M

Memorandum of Agreement 2015 to 2020

Thanks to the many members who showed up to one of our four ratification meetings today. The memorandum of agreement was enthusiastically accepted by the membership.

Memorandum of Agreement 2015 to 2020

RATIFIED, September 8th, 2015

Next Step

Annual General Membership Meeting

November 2015, TBA

  1. Membership Education

  2. Wealth Accumulation Q&A

  3. Changes to the Collective Agreement Q&A

  4. Union Elections for:

        • Vice President
        • Secretary
        • Chief Steward
        • Women’s Advocate

Anyone interested in an executive position should contact:

Stephen Hawkins:

Mark Cameron:


Stephen Hawkins
Local President, Unifor 830 M

Ratification Vote

Dear Unifor 830M Member:

Your Bargaining Committee met with the Company over several days and has developed a memorandum of agreement that we recommend you accept. You must attend one of four meetings to get the specific details and cast your vote.

The results of this vote will affect your working life for years to come, so please take the time to show up. There will be food and beverages.

Tuesday, September 8th, Four Meetings: 10AM, 12 Noon, 2PM & 4PM
Creekside Community Centre, Meeting Room 2

Stephen Hawkins
Local President, Unifor 830 M

Response by Unifor Local 723M to the CRTC

Thanks to  the thousands of Canadians who have expressed their great concern about Rogers decision to shut down multicultural newsrooms across the country, and especially to the over 880 individuals that took the time to register interventions in support of our efforts at the CRTC to hold Rogers accountable.
This is the final response document in Local 723M’s current complaint process; this is not the final chapter for daily multicultural news in Canada. 
In this election year the Canadian Government has the responsibility to call on the CRTC to act on this important matter.  Rogers will also be required to tell Canadians why they are the best Company to be entrusted with five of Canada’s six multicultural broadcast licences as they apply for license renewals in 2016/2017. 
Hopefully we can continue to count on you for support as we participate in this important process.
Stephen Hawkins
Local President, Unifor 830 M


DRAFT Local By-Laws, Nov 2014




Submitted at the General Membership Meeting of Unifor 830M, November 13th, 2014.

The following motion is presented here by the Executive Board to the General Membership in accordance with By-Law 7.1 of the current (2005) By- Laws.


7.1 These Bylaws may be amended by two-thirds (2/3) majority vote of members in good standing at a General Meeting, provided that any proposed amendment is posted at least ten (10) days prior to such General Meeting.


That the current By-Laws (2005) for Local 830M be replaced by the following By-Laws (November 2014) and submitted for approval to the National Unifor Union for approval.


As noted above, amendments to the By-Laws must be made with 10 days prior notice to a general membership meeting at which the proposals are being presented to vote on. Because these By-Laws are replacing the 2005 By-Laws, amendments may be made at the meeting to the proposed new By-Laws. The support of a two-thirds of members in good standing at the meeting is required to pass these new By-Laws.


  1. To update the change from CEP to Unifor.
  2. To reflect and identify obligations and considerations of the Unifor Constitution (2013).
  3. To better organize and clarify the administration and operation of Local 830M for all members.

BY-LAWS Unifor830M Nov 13th-2014 (PDF Version)


Nanos survey finds Canadians skeptical about CRTC TV proposals

Toronto (September 5, 2014) – On the eve of a CRTC hearing that could result in the gutting of Canada’s TV rules, a new Nanos survey released this morning finds the sweeping changes up for consideration next week are on shaky ground with Canadians.

The survey found more than half (54%) think it is unlikely that unbundling cable TV packages to allow consumers to pick and pay for only the channels they want will result in lower TV subscription costs.  Only one-in-four (24%) believe the federal government’s promise of lower prices while 62% believe cable and satellite companies who say prices won’t go down by unbundling TV packages.

Even with the prospect of lower subscription costs, 41% of Canadians say pick and pay and other changes should not occur because of potential damage to the economy and Canadian programming, while 43% believe the changes are acceptable.

According to the survey, Canadians place a very high level of importance (84%) on local news, yet this kind of programming is threatened by the CRTC’s proposals.

“Local TV stations across the land, especially in smaller markets, will shut down and investment in Canadian programs will plummet if the CRTC adopts rule changes it has broached in its review of TV policy, says Ian Morrison, spokesperson for the watchdog group Friends of Canadian Broadcasting which commissioned the survey in collaboration with ACTRA and Unifor.

“This poll shows that regardless of the platform upon which content is being delivered to viewers, the CRTC is trusted to ensure support for Canadian programming, to strengthen diversity in the system, and to use its authority to affirm the cornerstone place of the CBC,” says Stephen Waddell, National Executive Director of ACTRA.

By a very strong margin (68% agree), Canadians want foreign Internet broadcasters like Netflix to abide by the same rules as Canadian companies.  They also want foreign companies to contribute financially to new Canadian programming.   More than half (52%) completely disagree with the notion that these companies should not be required to financially contribute to help support new Canadian programming.  Of note, if Netflix and Canal + contributed to new Canadian programming, the positive impressions of those organizations would increase for most people (69%).

Other findings from the survey include:

• Canadians are satisfied (46% satisfied/25% somewhat satisfied) with the choice of US and other foreign programming that is available to them.

• Canadians place most trust and confidence in CBC and the CRTC to protect Canadian culture and identity on TV  (report pages 13 to 18).

• Canadians see the CRTC as responsible for protecting Canadian TV and radio content (page 5), strongly support the goals of the CRTC (report pages 19 to 23), and see a need for the CRTC today (report page 24).

• The vast majority of Canadians would like to see funding for the CBC stay at the same level or increase while only 10 percent would like to see CBC funding decreased.  Among federal Conservative supporters 51 percent would like CBC funding to be maintained, 25 percent would like to see CBC funding increased and 21 percent would like to see funding decreased.

• Canadians see the CBC playing an important role in strengthening Canadian culture and identity. The intensity of views on this opinion has increased over the past year.

“We have given evidence to the CRTC that the regulatory changes under consideration could cost the Canadian economy more than 31,000 jobs and almost $3 billion, a devastating consequence. Eliminating simultaneous substitution alone is a $300M revenue loss from Canadian media companies to American broadcast giants,” says Randy Kitt, Media Chair at Unifor.

Nanos conducted a random telephone survey of 1,000 Canadians between August 16th and 25th, 2014. The sample included both land- and cell-lines across Canada. The results were statistically checked and weighted by age and gender using the latest Census information and the sample is geographically stratified to be representative of Canada.

The margin of error for a random survey of 1,000 Canadians is ±3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

ACTRA (Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists – is the national organization of professional performers working in the English-language recorded media in Canada. ACTRA represents the interests of 22,000 members across Canada – the foundation of Canada’s highly acclaimed professional performing community.

Friends of Canadian Broadcasting is an independent watchdog for Canadian programming and is not affiliated with any broadcaster or political party.

Unifor is Canada’s largest union in the private sector, representing more than 305,000 workers, including 14,500 media sector workers. It was formed Labour Day weekend 2013 when the Canadian Auto Workers and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers union merged.


For information:

ACTRA: Carol Taverner 416-644-1519

Friends of Canadian Broadcasting: Jim Thompson 613-567-9592

Unifor: Randy Kitt, Unifor Media Council Chairperson 416-529-5152 (cell)

The complete Nanos Report is available here.

 Full page ad in the Hills Times


cropped-UNIFOR-bilingual-RGB-horizontal.jpgAfter two intense days of CRTC hearings in the nation’s capital, we were encouraged by the significant back pedalling that Rogers has made on some of the key issues in the City and OMNI license hearings.

On the strength of our intervention and those of like minded community groups, the Canadian public and Unifor members were rewarded by RBL CEO Keith Pelley’s concessions in his reply comments to the Commission on OMNI prime-time programming and the threat that NHL hockey broadcasts could displace current commitments to local programming on City.

However there is no cause for immediate celebration, our work is not done. We will have to wait for the Commission decision to see how it addresses some of the other key issues:

  • on City, the diversion of $5M annual local programming spending to Programs of National Interest
  • on OMNI, the dilution of Canadian content requirements and the minimum number of ethnic groups covered by programming requirements
  • the re-establishment of feet-on-the-street news reporting at Alberta’s two OMNI stations, and a guarantee that Vancouver’s local OMNI news will be protected by license and the Chinese news should have their staffing restored to January 2013 levels

We were also delighted that Pelley backed down on the RBL request for a lengthy five-year license for OMNI when the main reason for seeking regulatory relief was a two-year inventory of US programming  for which RBL overpaid. Pelley conceded to a two year term and we expect that the Commission will agree.

Pelley also agreed to our request to re-establish the OMNI community advisory boards. We are hoping it will be made a condition of license and we advocated for including union members on those boards.

We hope to get a decision within a couple of months and we will keep you posted.

Howard Law

Director, Media Sector


National Unifor President’s OMNI Editorial



Unifor will be making a presentation to the CRTC on April 9th in Gatineau, Quebec.  Local President, Stephen Hawkins will be appearing on Wednesday afternoon with other Unifor representatives to advocate for conditions of licence that support local original daily programming on both OMNI and City.

These proceedings should be available live on the CRTC’s web site.  The hearing number is 2014-26.  Transcripts should also be posted on the Commissions web page.

National President Jerry Dias captured Unifor’s position in his recent Toronto Star editorial.


TO star logo

Opinion / Commentary

Rogers’ cuts to OMNI chip away at Canada’s cultural mosaic

Despite cuts to OMNI, Rogers Communications has the necessary resources to make quality local ethnic broadcasting work.

Rogers Broadcasting Ltd. is right now asking the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission (our national broadcast regulator) to rewrite the rules governing ethnic television in Ontario, British Columbia and Alberta – and not to the benefit of ethnic communities.

Rogers wants to direct its multilingual OMNI programming to fewer ethnic audiences, eliminating those it deems unprofitable. They are asking for the ability to remove half of the ethnic communities served. Rogers wants more flexibility to broadcast non-Canadian programming and feels that local community-based programming is too onerous, and wants to cut that, too. That likely means less local news for ethnic and third-language communities.

The company (one of Canada’s largest and wealthiest media corporations) says ethnic broadcasting isn’t paying the bills, that it’s a money loser.

We know that multicultural and multilingual television programming is vitally important to many newcomer communities across Canada. Ethnic broadcasting not only fosters a sense of connection to Canada’s cultural mosaic, it builds communities (through native language story-telling), provides employment opportunities (with in-house technical production, journalists and on-air personalities) and informs the public (through local news reporting in various languages).

Above all, it fosters greater participation in Canada’s democratic life.

It’s no surprise, then, that Canada’s immigrant and newcomer communities were stunned when Rogers announced job and program cuts impacting OMNI stations in May 2013, the latest in a series of ethnic television cuts over recent years.

Our union filed an official complaint with the CRTC, arguing that Rogers had breached the terms of its license. Canadians agreed. Many expressed frustration with the declining level of programming quality and local-ness in community ethnic television.

At OMNI-1 in Toronto, for instance, local programming has been cut in half since 2000/2001, according to the Forum for Research and Policy in Communications. Since 2005, staff in Toronto (arguably the most multi-cultural city in the country) has been cut by 80 per cent – barely above a skeleton crew today. In Alberta, OMNI stations in Edmonton and Calgary don’t employ a single local journalist reporting community news. In 2010, Rogers decided to dissolve community advisory boards, originally created to solicit input and feedback on OMNI programming – losing touch with its ethnic audience.

This consistent decline in resources dedicated to OMNI raises serious concerns about the future of ethnic broadcasting in Canada. Young viewers won’t tune in, if what they see isn’t relevant. And it won’t be relevant if it continues to be starved out.

In fairness to Rogers, the playing field among ethnic broadcasters is tilted. OMNI’s main source of revenue is advertising, and that’s becoming less lucrative as new ethnic specialty channels come online. Some specialty channels can charge viewers subscriber fees, a source of revenue not available to “over-the-air” broadcasters like OMNI (meaning that programs can be watched, for free, through a television antenna).

This imbalance must be addressed by the CRTC, and we hope it frames part of the commission’s Ethnic Broadcasting Policy review set for 2016.

But if Rogers thinks the best way to solve its competitive woes is by taking away airtime for ethnic communities (to broadcast more lucrative U.S. programming), then that begs the question: Is Rogers still the most appropriate carrier of Over-the-Air ethnic programming?

Ultimately, we think it is. Not only because Rogers has ethnic broadcasting experience, but also because it has the necessary resources to make quality local ethnic broadcasting work.

Rogers Communications is a multi-billion dollar operation that raked in $1.7 billion in profits in 2013. Rogers Media, its subsidiary, earned a healthy $161 million in profits. Dividend payments to shareholders topped $870 million.

If Rogers continue to produce ethnic and multilingual programming, without any changes to its license, it would cost OMNI $2 million annually – a relatively small price to pay so that small-market and third-language communities are well-served. Ethnic broadcasting is about serving the public interest – not solely about padding a corporation’s profits.

The voices of our ethnic communities must speak out. The CRTC is holding hearings on April 8 to decide on Rogers proposed cuts. Rogers has had the privilege of delivering this vital service to our communities, for years. Let’s ensure they continue providing quality service for years to come.

Jerry Dias is the national president of Unifor, which represents 660 workers at Rogers, including 60 at OMNI and 370 at City.

March 2014 Update


CRTC hearings into Rogers application to renew its broadcast licences are scheduled for Tuesday, April 8th in Gatineau, Quebec.  Hundreds of Canadians submitted their thoughts on Rogers plans through interventions of support or opposition to the CRTC last month

Unifor has asked some important questions to both the CRTC and Rogers.  What the Commission decides will affect our working lives in years to come.  We will be posting many of the intervenor comments for you to review on our local web site:

Unifor National Submission

Unifor Local 830M (CITY Vancouver & OMNI BC Unionized Members)


Unifor Local 723M (CITY Toronto & OMNI Ontario Unionized Members)

City of Vancouver, Mayor Gregor Robertson

NDP Member of Parliament, Libby Davies

NDP Members of Parliament, Andrew Cash & Don Davies

Forum for Research and Policy in Communications, Monica Auer, M.A.,LL.M.

Vancouver District Labour Council, President Joey Hartman

BC Federation of Labour President, Jim Sinclair

Worker’s Action Centre withdrawals letter of support


The CRTC has released Choicebook at:  It is a questionnaire that will guide the CRTC to the future of Canadian Television regulation. It is important for us to fill out this questionnaire in a way that shows the Commission we care about well funded local programming.

Unifor has created a guide to help you fill out the questionnaire at:

Contact one of the Executive Board Members if you have any questions, comments or concerns

Protect Local Programming

Rogers has an application to renew its broadcast licences in front of the CRTC this April. Broadcast Application 2014-26

In light of last May’s lay offs at OMNI we are are alarmed to see Rogers has no plans to restore programming and even indicates they might reduce ethnic programming even further if they are not granted major concessions by the CRTC

At City in Vancouver, Rogers plans to continue a minimal approach to local daily programming, with no plans beyond the morning show

As the creative content professionals that have dedicated our professional lives to broadcasting, we share Rogers pride in providing local original programming to Vancouverites. We know Rogers could commit to so much more and we challenge them to make those commitments to the CRTC at this critical time


Please read the following letter from Howard Law, Director , Unifor Media Sector, and have your say on the future of Local Ethnic Programming

I am reaching out to inform you of alarming developments regarding the future of ethnic programming in Canada.

Rogers Media is currently applying to the federal regulator, the CRTC, to renew its OMNI television broadcast licenses on terms that will dramatically reduce or eliminate minimum guarantees of ethnic community and third-language programming. As you may recall, this comes on the heels of last year’s cuts to OMNI stations Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary and Edmonton, when 21 programs were axed and more than 60 jobs cut.

Our union shares Rogers’ pride in providing ethnic and third-language programming geared to our newcomer and immigrant communities. A vibrant media connects us to our community, and gives us the tools to participate in a democratic life. That’s why Unifor raised concerns against the programming cuts announced last May – a concern that was supported by many of our fellow community advocates, like you As a result of our collective effort, the CRTC required an early review of Rogers’ license conditions for OMNI stations.

Unfortunately, Rogers has responded to this early review by asking the CRTC to go even further and scrap regulations guiding OMNI programming in its Conditions of License. Specifically, Rogers want to:

- Cut back on foreign-language programming so as to make way for U.S. comedy and entertainment shows, perhaps NHL hockey too, especially during the day and evening;
- Eliminate conditions that require stations to broadcast a diverse range of third- language programming;

- Amend the license so as to limit the number of broadcasts aimed at distinct ethnic groups (from 20 to as few as 10, without saying which communities are being targeted);

- Lower community-content minimums

When pressed for more detail on what the elimination of ethnic programming minimums will mean, and why they are needed, Rogers literally says in their legal brief, “trust us.” They provide no details of what will be cut, and no business plan to support their claim that by scrapping minimums of community programming it will all end well.

Rogers says their current OMNI business model is unsustainable. But they don’t provide any verifying information that a standard business statement or shareholder report would require.

We know that the entire broadcast sector is facing significant challenges. We are in a tough business cycle. The internet is competing with TV. All of the multi-billion dollar Canadian media companies like Rogers are adapting. (Rogers wants, and frankly deserves, a CRTC hearing on how best to level the playing field among Canadian ethnic TV broadcasters, in upcoming proceedings).

The case for ethnic programming goes beyond dollars and cents. Community ethnic programming is an act of citizenry, required by Canada’s Broadcasting Act. Of course it costs money. But through OMNI and its mainstream TV stations, Rogers is given privileged access to public airwaves and shelter from intense U.S. competition to deliver programs that matter to Canadians. That’s why they are a $12 billion media success. In return, Rogers must act on its responsibility to be a steward for Canada’s media policy objectives regarding Canadian content, local programming and ethnic broadcasting.

Unifor will be raising our concerns about further cuts to ethnic programming to the CRTC, and we encourage you to do the same.

We also think an open, honest and inclusive discussion about the future of ethnic, foreign- language and community television needs to be had. Let’s find ways to turn our communities back on to community television. How can we help Rogers improve programming, not just cut it?

You can join in this important discussion. Please have your organization submit an intervention or comment by visiting the following page on the CRTC website:

Please note: You must submit your intervention no later than end of day February 28.
Please also request to appear at the hearing to voice your concerns on this matter. Hearings are scheduled to be held in Gatineau, Quebec on April 8. (Unifor will be requesting that additional hearings be held in other regions across the country).

Unless you file an intervention by February 28th, you cannot appear at the hearing to advocate for your community.

Should you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me. There a large number of Rogers’ application documents on the CRTC website, but if you would like a copy of their most important 16-page document, please contact me at

In solidarity,

Howard Law
Director, Media Sector