Gantry cranes used to load and unload container ships at the DP World terminal at port, in Vancouver, on Monday, December 28, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Gantry cranes used to load and unload container ships at the DP World terminal at port, in Vancouver, on Monday, December 28, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

10,000 B.C. longshoremen, warehouse workers to receive anti-harassment training

Campaign seeks to change a work culture divided along racial lines since the late 1800s: union president

A violence and harassment prevention training program aims to shift what has traditionally been the white, male-dominated culture of British Columbia’s waterfront workplaces.

Federal Labour Minister Filomena Tassi says the BC Maritime Employers Association, International Longshore and Warehouse Union and Ending Violence Association of BC have created a program to benefit 10,000 employees in ports along the B.C. coast.

A statement from Employment and Social Development Canada says the program is backed by a portion of $3.9 million in federal funding and provides training and education to support safer, more respectful workplaces, including for LGBTQ and Indigenous communities.

Rob Ashton, president of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, says the first-of-its-kind initiative underway on B.C.’s waterfront is not designed to “weaponize” anti-harassment training through discipline, although the program will have measures to encourage compliance.

Instead, he says it is based on the “Be More than a Bystander” campaign developed by the Ending Violence Association and will “start the healing” by changing a culture that Ashton says divided waterfront work along racial lines as far back as the late 1800s.

Tracy Porteous with the Ending Violence Association of BC says her group’s bystander campaign is a good fit for waterfront workers because it will add the “voices and committed interventions by men” to those of women and minorities already speaking up against workplace violence and harassment.

READ MORE: New program offers free legal advice to victims of workplace sexual harassment in B.C.

British Columbiaworkplace harassment

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A nurse performs a test on a patient at a drive-in COVID-19 clinic in Montreal, on Wednesday, October 21, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Interior Health reports 16 new COVID-19 cases

423 cases remain active in the region

Leith Olafson being congratulated by Jerry Bancks. Photo submitted
Selkirk Sports School wraps up season

A very different year due to COVID-19

Pictured are Meredith Funston of Cranbrook Food Recovery (left), Shannon Grey Duncan of Kimberley Food Recovery (middle) and Wade Jarvis of Bohemian Spirits (right). The three have teamed up to divert bread from the landfill and turn it into ethanol, which is used to make hand sanitizer. (Corey Bullock file)
Cranbrook, Kimberley organizations team up to turn excess bread into ethanol

Local food recovery programs have teamed up with Bohemian Spirits to keep bread out of the landfill

ANKORS held a march in Cranbrook on Aug. 31, 2020 for Overdose Awareness Day. Corey Bullock photo.
10 overdose deaths in Cranbrook last year: BC Coroners Service

There were 10 suspected illicit drug toxicity deaths in the Cranbrook local… Continue reading

The BC Alpine Ski Team is training in Kimberley, allowed to travel and train in the province of B.C. under current regulations as elite athletes. Paul Rodgers photos.
BC Alpine Ski Team trains in Kimberley

As elite athletes, the team is allowed to travel in B.C. under current PHO guidelines

The area on Cordova Bay Road where ancestral human remains were discovered Feb. 22. (Submitted photo)
Human remains discovery a reminder of B.C. Indigenous culture dug up and displaced

‘These are the people who inspired and birthed the generations that we now have here’

Older rental apartments are prime candidates for renovations, and could result in lost affordable housing stock. (Zoë Ducklow photo)
B.C.’s renoviction overhaul a good start, but won’t preserve affordable stock, lawyer says

And still no protection for people who can’t pay rent due to COVID-19

(Photo by Marissa Baecker/Shoot the Breeze)
B.C. WHL teams to hit the ice with Kelowna, Kamloops hub cities

Kelowna, Kamloops centres chosen to host B.C. WHL teams for 24-game regular season

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

The machines are akin to ATMs and allow drug users at risk of overdose to get hydromorphone pills dispensed to them after their palm has been scanned to identify its unique vein pattern. (CANADIAN PRESS)
Feds dole out $3.5M for ‘vending machines’ to dispense safer opioids in B.C.

The machines are located in four cities across Canada, including Vancouver and Victoria

Kelowna’s lakefront visitor centre is one of 130 around the province. Tourism businesses have been hardest hit by COVID-19 restrictions on travel. (Destination B.C.)
Tourism, small business getting COVID-19 help, B.C. minister says

$300M grant program has delivered $50 million so far

(Black Press file photo)
Agassiz boy, 11, dies from ‘extensive injuries’: Homicide team

Agassiz RCMP were called out Friday to assist with a child in medical distress

Most Read