Bulletin #1 Protest vs Pickets – Know Your Rights!

Bulletin #1
January 20, 2020


Brothers, Sisters, and Friends;

Today there was a protest line blockading the entrance to Swartz Bay Terminal, which has raised questions about members’ rights and obligations in these circumstances.

What happens when I see a picket line?

When you see a picket line or what you believe may be a picket line, you have the right and obligation not to cross the line.

How can I tell if it’s a picket or a protest?

It is not your responsibility to determine the difference between a picket and a protest; it is about your impression of the situation. Once you have chosen not to cross, no obligation to cross the line exists until your Union has said crossing is ok to do so. (Coast Mountain Bus Co. vs. Petersen [2009]).

Will I get in trouble if I don’t cross?

If you are confronted with what you believe is a picket line, your right to not cross comes from the Collective Agreement Article 6.11, which guarantees no discipline for refusing to cross a picket line.

What happens if I cross a picket line?

The obligation to not cross a picket line comes from our Constitution (Article 6 Section 1(a) (xvii) & Section 3(c) ), where crossing or working behind a picket line will result in fines of $1000 per instance and discipline up to loss of membership.

In Solidarity

Graeme Johnston
Provincial President


View as a pdf: Bulletin #1 Protest vs Pickets – Know Your Rights!