June 17 Update
Heavy Equipment Rodeo for 2020 is cancelled
In keeping with public health officials’ regulations for physical distancing, the Heavy Equipment Rodeo is cancelled for this coming Saturday, June 20th.
We look forward to welcoming everyone back for this event in 2021.
Modified Worksite Operating Protocols now available, click here for your copy
There’s one sector of the economy that’s likely to remain intact during the COVID-19 pandemic, and that’s construction.
When the pandemic finally passes, construction will also be the industry helping to lead BC through the economic rebuild.
The Modified Worksite Operating Protocols is a real plan to maintain the building of much needed infrastructure in the province, while making sure construction sites remain safe and healthy environments for workers, and all British Columbians.
It’s a clear path forward for these times and is designed according to the strict guidance and direction of BC Health officials. We also appreciate the support from our partners at the Labourers Union 1611 and the Teamsters Union Local 213.
It’s essential now for workers and employers to get the Modified Worksite Operating Protocols which now available for download here.
The COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic is impacting employment for an unprecedented number of people across the country. Below is a summary of available supports you may find helpful.
Apply for EI as normal if you are laid-off for non-medical reasons
- Need 700 hours work in past year
- Record of Employment (ROE) required
- Pays up to $573/week
- First 4 months, you will receive Canadian Emergency Response Benefit (CERB)
- If you are already receiving EI, benefits continue as before
- If you are receiving EI and benefits end before Oct 3, you can apply for CERB.
All Other Work Disruptions
The Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) is available if you:
- Don’t qualify for EI
- Are self-isolating or have been diagnosed with COVID-19
- Are caring for family due to their illness or school closures.
Canada Emergency Response Benefit
- $2,000/month for 4 months
- Apply online, by birth month: January – March on Mondays; April – June on Tuesdays, July – September on Wednesdays, October – December on Thursdays. Any birth month can apply Fridays – Sundays.
- Work impacted from March 15 to October 3, 2020 qualifies
- Monthly payments received as early as 10 days after applying.
OEBP & COVID-19 Diagnosis
Whether you are laid-off or are taking time off work because you contract COVID-19, you apply for and will collect CERB as above. If you are not laid-off and are away from work due to a COVID-19 diagnosis (or any other health reason), you must also contact the Plan office to request the appropriate disability forms at 604-291-8831 or 1-800-486-3115 or by email at email@example.com. If the forms are not filed within 30 days of leaving work for health reasons (date of disability), you risk your disability claim being denied. See the OEBP for full details.
If you contracted COVID-19 at
work, you may also be able to make a claim through Worksafe BC. Call
1-888-967-5377 for more information.
Supporting Your Mental Health
- Members can access 12, one-hour sessions with mental health or financial management professionals through your Employee and Family Member Benefits from Homewood Health. Contact 1-800-663-1142 or homewoodhealth.com.
- For the duration of the pandemic, your family can access up to $2,000 in psychologist, counselling and psychiatric support through Pacific Blue Cross. Submit receipts as normal.
Easing Cashflow Challenges
- Through Community Savings, members can access loans of up to $2,500 interest free for six months, mortgage deferrals, and free monthly service fees.
- Income tax filing deadline extended to June 1 and payment deadline to September 1
- Many banks will allow you to defer mortgage payments by up to six months
- New BC Emergency Benefit of $1,000 tax free for people whose employment is impacted
- BC Climate Change Tax Credit will be raised to up to $218 per adult and $64 per child, payable in July
- BC Hydro bills may be deferred up to six months
- Student loan payments are deferred until September 30, 2020
- ICBC monthly payments may be deferred up to 90 days without penalty. Visit icbc.com or call 604-661-2723 or 1-800-665-6442. Note driver’s license and auto insurance renewals can now be done online or by phone.
- BC has placed a moratorium on evictions and mandated a rent freeze until the provincial State of Emergency has been lifted.
Support for Seniors
- Seniors looking for someone to help with errands like grocery shopping can now call 211 to get matched with a volunteer in their area. Want to volunteer? Call 211 or visit BC211.ca.
Beware of Scams
Protect yourself from fraud during the pandemic:
- Don’t reveal personal or financial information in response to unsolicited calls, texts or emails
- Change passwords regularly and monitor bank accounts and credit cards for unusual activity
- Contact police if you think you’ve been targeted.
Please Note: This information will be updated as new details become available.
We have made the decision to temporarily suspend all courses being delivered at the Maple Ridge Training Campus to protect the health and safety of the Members, students and Training staff.
Despite the closure of the campus there are still many other different online training options for you to take advantage of at this time such as:
- Ground disturbance
- Pipeline Construction Safety Training
- Construction Safety Training System
- Sideboom Safety Training
- Transportation of Dangerous Goods
- Confined Space Awareness
- H2S Safety Training
- Fall Protection Awareness
Should any of these programs interest you please call the Training Association at 604-291-8831 to get yourself registered.
As we manage through the COVID -19 crisis, we need to keep our members working in an environment where it is safe according to guidance from the government and health authorities.
The construction industry has many sectors, and today I made an inquiry to the Ministry of Labour regarding the government’s position as it relates to road building and other related infrastructure work.
This response from the Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Labour clarifies the government will “continue to advance both existing and new highway construction and engineering within the province.”
We need to keep our members safe, and we’ll continue to promote for safer workplaces as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.
Brian Cochrane, Business Manager IUOE Local 115
Community Savings Credit Union is extending a new line of credit offer due to COVID
With many British Columbians experiencing financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Community Savings Credit Union is extending a line of credit offer to everyone, including those currently out of work.
Community Savings Credit Union would like to remind their existing customers who have loans with them; that they have the right to defer loan repayments and request fees to be waived during these circumstances.
For more Information, visit Community Savings Credit Union.
We want to assure you that IUOE Local 115 has taken steps during the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure that payments to members who are retired or receiving benefits remain uninterrupted.
Reliable Investments for Your Future
As always, the Operating Engineers Pension Plan is concentrated in reliable investments to insulate it from potential fluctuations in equity markets. In fact, the pension plan has less than 6% of the fund invested in the stock market, with the bulk of assets invested in long bonds, infrastructure and real estate. Please be assured your pension fund is managed with your long-term security in mind. At this time, the pension plan is 115% funded.
Serving Members by Email, Phone and Mail
We are closely monitoring this rapidly evolving situation and are following the recommendations of public health officials to support the continued health of our members, staff and communities. Based on those recommendations, we have closed our offices to members and the public and will support you by:
- Phone – Lower Mainland: 604-291-8831 or Toll-fee: 1-888-486-3115.
- Email – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Mail – IUOE Local 115, 4333 Ledger Avenue, Burnaby, B.C. V5G 3T3
We care about your health. Some key actions you can take to protect yourself from COVID-19 include:
- Frequently washing your hands with soap for 20 seconds or more
- Don’t touch your face
- Social distancing – stay home whenever possible and avoid contact with others.
If you have not already done so, we encourage you to go to add your name to our email list to receive updates and to see how IUOE Local 115 is supporting our members and communities at this time.
For more information continue to visit our web page “How IUOE Local 115 is Supporting Members” for our latest updates.
Brian Cochrane, Chair On behalf of Trustees Operating Engineers Pension and Benefit Plans Trustees
During this unprecedented and evolving situation, one thing that will not change is that IUOE Local 115 will continue to act in our members’ interests and work to support you during this pandemic.
In keeping with public health officials’ recommendation of social distancing, we are working to provide all member services online or via phone. As a result all Local 115 offices are closed to members and the public until further notice. Please contact your regional office on the following numbers …
Head Office and District 1 (Lower Mainland): 604-291-8831
District 2 (Vancouver Island): 250-754-4022
District 3 (Thompson Okanagan): 250-554-2278
Districts 4 and 5 (Cariboo/Central Interior/Pacific Northwest and Peace River/Yukon Territory): 250-563-3669
District 6 (Kootenays): 250-425-2161
We continue to monitor this situation daily and are adjusting some of our normal modes of operations to best support the continued health of members, staff and our communities. Please visit this site frequently for the latest updates. To have the most current information emailed to you directly, add your name to our “Stay in Touch” button for IUOE Local 115 updates.
Brian Cochrane, Business Manager IUOE Local 115