Our View: Celebrating labour’s contribution to B.C.

There is a history to this long weekend that has been lost for many people in this generation.

The first weekend of September is more than just the last chance to enjoy a little free time in the summer. And there’s definitely more to Labour Day than a final chance to hit the mall for another back to school sale.

There is a history to this long weekend that has been lost for many people in this generation.

The first weekend of September is more than just the last chance to enjoy a little free time in the summer. And there’s definitely more to Labour Day than a final chance to hit the mall for another back to school sale.

Then there’s the ongoing drama involving the B.C. Teachers’ Federation and the Ministry of Education. The dispute has some questioning whether the teachers’ unions have the best interests of our kids at heart. After all, if the education system is disrupted, the hardest hit won’t be the folks in government who make the rules that the teachers are fighting against.

To be fair, every indication suggests the BCTF has taken into account the affects on classrooms of any job action. When kids go back to school next, they should be oblivious that their teachers are even partaking in a dispute. That’s the way it should be.

The labour movement has come a long way from the days when workers were little more than pawns for people with capital. Over the centuries, hard-fought movements have entrenched rights such as reasonable work weeks, guaranteed vacation days and proper safety standards.

In many ways, the labour movement forced the hand of companies to ensure they adopted better management. Isn’t that what unions are – a way for workers to have a say in how they’re managed?

These days, the labour movement still serves a vital role as a counterbalance to market forces. Free enterprise and laissez-faire capitalism have been invaluable to our economies and helped ensure our governments are healthy enough to provide so many of the things the population demands.

But the labour movement has also enriched our province, both by ensuring a better life for individual British Columbians and by forcing industry to find the benefits of a more dynamic workforce.

Happy, well-balanced employees are a resource that anyone can see is something worth fighting for.

Just Posted

Elaine Kirwin in her Expedia Cruises office talks about the future of travel. (Don Denton/Black Press Media)
Sidney travel agency charts course through pandemic

Owner of Expedia Cruises in Sidney expects smooth sailing ahead once travel restrictions lift

Oak Bay Rotary Club member Lorna Curtis takes over as District Governor of Rotary District 5020 on July 1. (Courtesy Lorna Curtis)
Former Oak Bay recreation director goes international with Rotary

Lorna Curtis takes over as district governor on July 1

Co-creatorsAdrianna Hatton and Malcolm McKenzie stand next to the little free library revealed Sunday at 9710 First St. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
Literary crowd helps opens little free library in Sidney

Located at 9710 First St., the book sharing box features original art and reclaimed wood

Deep Cove Elementary School principal Shelley Hardcastle (right) and vice-principal Mary Kaercher help to restock Reay Creek with fish – in this case, coho fry – after a recent bleach spill killed hundreds of fish. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
North Saanich’s Deep Cove Elementary School helps to restock Sidney’s Reay Creek

Restocking followed bleach spill that killed hundreds of fish in creek

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

The Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has been held in Summerland as a fundraising event. Do you know which Canadian city introduced this sport? (Black Press file photo)
QUIZ: A summer’s day at the water

How much do you know about boats, lakes and water?

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

Most Read