What is CUPE?
CUPE is the largest labour union in B.C. and in Canada. We represent workers in municipalities, education, libraries, universities, colleges, social services, health care, public utilities, transportation, emergency services and airlines and around 630,000 members across Canada. Here is a link that explains more about CUPE.

How can I get Involved?
Come to a general meeting. All of our general membership meetings are on the 4th Tuesday of every other month

How can I get news about CUPE local 556?
The website is a good start. We also have a facebook page that is updated frequently. Your workplace should also have a bulletin board dedicated to CUPE specific information. If your workplace does not have a CUPE specific bulletin board then let your Steward or someone on your executive know.

What if I have a work-related question or concern?
Hopefully you can find an answer to your question on this website or in your Collective Agreement but if you still need help, your shop stewards are there to answer any questions and to help deal with any work-related issues you may have. You can find your shop steward by contacting someone on your executive.

What is a shop steward?
Shop stewards are union members who have received training to represent and defend the interests of other members in the workplace, sometimes through the grievance process. They enforce the provisions of our collective agreement in the workplace and ensure that your employer is in compliance with labour laws. Stewards also share official union news and information and promote union values in the workplace.

When is it appropriate to speak with a shop steward?

What is a Collective Agreement and where do I find it?
The Collective Agreement is the contract between the union as bargaining agent and your employer. It covers such issues as wages, working conditions, benefits, rights, and procedures to be followed in settling disputes. Your Collective Agreement is on this website.

If you have trouble understanding anything in your Collective Agreement, your Steward(s) would be more than happy to assist you. You can also contact anyone on our executive if a Steward is unavailable.
Here are some examples of what you’ll find in your Collective Agreement:
• Details of hiring process
• Details of sick pay/benefits
• Details of vacation and vacation pay
• Calculation of seniority
• Conditions for leaves of absence
• Grievance procedures

Are there any other documents other than our Collective Agreement?
Yes, there are our Local Bylaws and the CUPE National Constitution. CUPE Local 556 is governed by CUPE National Constitution, and operates within the guidelines set out in our Local Bylaws.
Here are some examples of what you’ll find in our Local Bylaws:
• Membership Meetings
• Executive Board
• Nomination, Election, and Installation of Officers
• Fees, Dues, and Assessments

Where do I find my seniority list?
It should be posted on your CUPE bulletin board. If not, then contact your unit vice.