BC Labour Laws

Legislation:  Labour Relations Code

Rights of employers and employees

4 (1) Every employee is free to be a member of a trade union and to participate in its lawful activities.

(2) Every employer is free to be a member of an employers’ organization and to participate in its lawful activities.

Unfair labour practices

6 (1) Except as otherwise provided in section 8, an employer or a person acting on behalf of an employer must not participate in or interfere with the formation, selection or administration of a trade union or contribute financial or other support to it.

(2) Despite this section, an employer may permit an employee or representative of a trade union to confer with the employer during working hours or to attend to the trade union’s business during working hours without deducting time so occupied in computing the time worked for the employer and without deducting wages for that time.

(3) An employer or a person acting on behalf of an employer must not

(a) discharge, suspend, transfer, lay off or otherwise discipline an employee, refuse to employ or to continue to employ a person or discriminate against a person in regard to employment or a condition of employment because the person

(i)  is or proposes to become or seeks to induce another person to become a member or officer of a trade union, or

(ii)  participates in the promotion, formation or administration of a trade union,

(b) discharge, suspend, transfer, lay off or otherwise discipline an employee except for proper cause when a trade union is in the process of conducting a certification campaign for employees of that employer,

(c) impose in a contract of employment a condition that seeks to restrain an employee from exercising his or her rights under this Code,

(d) seek by intimidation, by dismissal, by threat of dismissal or by any other kind of threat, or by the imposition of a penalty, or by a promise, or by a wage increase, or by altering any other terms or conditions of employment, to compel or to induce an employee to refrain from becoming or continuing to be a member or officer or representative of a trade union,

(e) use or authorize or permit the use of the services of a person in contravention of section 68, or

(f) refuse to agree with a trade union, certified under this Code as the bargaining agent for his or her employees who have been engaged in collective bargaining to conclude their first collective agreement, that all employees in the unit, whether or not members of the trade union, but excluding those exempted under section 17, will pay union dues from time to time to the trade union.

(4) Despite subsection (3), except as expressly provided, this Code must not be interpreted to limit or otherwise affect the right of the employer to

(a) discharge, suspend, transfer, lay off or otherwise discipline an employee for proper cause, or

(b) make a change in the operation of the employer’s business reasonably necessary for the proper conduct of that business.

Limitation on activities of trade unions

7 (1) Except with the employer’s consent, a trade union or person acting on its behalf must not attempt, at the employer’s place of employment during working hours, to persuade an employee of the employer to join or not join a trade union.

(2) If employees reside on their employer’s property or on property to which the employer or another person has the right to control access or entry, the employer or other person must on the board’s direction permit a representative authorized in writing by a trade union to enter the property to attempt to persuade the employees to join a trade union and, if the trade union acquires bargaining rights, after that to enter the property to conduct business of the trade union.

(3) If directed by the board and on request by the trade union representative, the employer must provide the representative with food and lodging at the current price and of a similar kind and quality as that provided to the employees.

Right to communicate

8 Subject to the regulations, a person has the freedom to express his or her views on any matter, including matters relating to an employer, a trade union or the representation of employees by a trade union, provided that the person does not use intimidation or coercion.

Coercion and intimidation prohibited

9 A person must not use coercion or intimidation of any kind that could reasonably have the effect of compelling or inducing a person to become or to refrain from becoming or to continue or cease to be a member of a trade union.

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