(Unceded Squamish, Tsleil-Waututh and Musqueam territories — Vancouver, BC) The BC Federation of Labour Young Workers’ Committee will stage an overnight “virtual sit-in” on June 19th to highlight weak safety laws for convenience store and gas station staff working alone at night. The event honours Grant De Patie, a 24-year-old gas station attendant who died tragically in 2005 in a gas-and-dash incident while working late and alone.
“As we gather to remember Grant, our message is clear: the BC government and Worker’s Compensation Board must act now to keep convenience and gas station workers safe from incidents of violence and theft,” said Rick Kumar, Chair of the BCFED Young Worker’s Committee. “Re-instate the requirement for two workers to be working between 10:00pm and 6:00am or require a protective barrier between workers and customers that keeps them safe.”
Grant De Patie’s death sparked new safety rules, called Grant’s Law, that better protected workers. Under pressure from big corporations like Mac’s, the Christy Clark BC Liberal government watered down those protections in 2012, eliminating the need for safety barriers and loosening the requirement to have two staff working at night. To date, the BC NDP government and Workers’ Compensation Board has maintained the status quo, putting worker safety at risk.
“COVID has turned the public’s attention to the value of frontline workers and the need for strong health and safety measures,” said BCFED President, Laird Cronk. "Government knows what to do to protect these workers; what's needed now is political will." The BCFED has launched an online petition calling for the full re-instatement of Grant’s Law.
What: Protest for stronger safety protections for late-night workers
When: Sat. June 19th, 7:00 pm to 6:00 am Sun. June 20th
Jonathan Sas, Communications Director | 604-861-4321| email@example.com