Bell Canada continues to stall on pay equity
Bell Canada, claiming to be a 'great Canadian company', continues to stall on pay equity
The Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union (CEP) is asking union
members to take part in a campaign to let Bell Canada know their efforts to
deny women rightful pay equity are not appreciated by potential BC
Bell is aggressively marketing in British Columbia to get people to switch
their phone service to Bell. In the course of their marketing efforts, they
are claiming to be a 'great Canadian company'.
Bell agreed to a pay equity plan over a decade ago, but the company has
stalled on settling the claim, which covers about 5,000 current and former
CEP telephone operators, many of whom are owed up to $50,000 in pay.
The CEP's claim is currently before the Human Rights Tribunal and hearing
dates have been scheduled well into 2005. Bell spends over $5 million in
legal fees annually and has used a battery of lawyers and legal tactics to
stall settlement. They even challenged the right of the Human Rights
Tribunal to hear the case, which they lost in the Supreme Court of Canada
Bell held its Annual General Meeting in Vancouver May 26, and B.C.
Federation of Labour Secretary-Treasurer Angela Schira joined current and
former operators to leaflet shareholders and raise awareness of the issue.
"This company's record on paying women fairly is bad enough," said Schira.
"But we're absolutely appalled they are continuing to deploy tactics to deny
thousands of women equal pay for work they've already performed."
Many of the women who could have benefited from the pay equity settlement no
longer work for the company, as tech change has virtually eliminated the
job. And because the case has dragged on so long, some of the women who were
entitled to a payout have since passed away and will never see a settlement.
The B.C. Federation of Labour fully supports this CEP-led campaign and asks
anyone thinking of switching to Bell to call the company and tell them to
settle the pay equity claim immediately.