ICBC Union Wins Unpaid Overtime Arbitration
Burnaby – The union representing employees at the Insurance Corporation of BC won an important arbitration award which could end the practice of unpaid overtime at the public insurer.
The Canadian Office and Professional Employees Union, Local 378 (MoveUP) had long warned ICBC that the Corporation’s staffing levels were inadequate and workloads were growing out of control. But ICBC denied the problem while relying on their members working unpaid overtime to meet unrealistic workload targets.
“For years ICBC has been overloading its employees with more work than can be done in a day,” said MoveUP Senior Union Representative Jaime Zygmunt. “Our members take pride in their jobs, so many employees put in their own time to make sure ICBC customers get good service. ICBC exploits that culture. They’ve cut back the number of staff relative to the work required to be completed, making the situation worse.”
The arbitrator found that ICBC received an “unjust enrichment” from the hours of unpaid overtime – the Corporation benefited from the work but did not pay wages or taxes on the benefit. The arbitrator also found the employer failed to stop employees from working beyond their regularly scheduled hours, despite knowing it was happening.
“It’s no longer acceptable—nor it should ever have been—for people to work prior to the start of their shift, after their shift, during their lunch period, during their rest periods, or to take work home without getting paid,” said Zygmunt. “This win sends ICBC a strong message: our members don’t work for free.”
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