The Canadian Media Guild (CMG), CBC Branch, encourages CBC/Radio-Canada to exercise caution and flexibility when eventually re-integrating a scattered workforce displaced by the pandemic.
There is no question the past 16 months have been hard for many Canadians, including media workers.
While continuing to deliver remarkable service and products, the CBC/Radio Canada workforce has undergone substantial change during this pandemic.
Whether we work inside, outside, or remotely, the job of adapting work routines, home-life or workspace has been disruptive.
We’ve heard from many of you who feel undervalued having no choice but to continue going into the station since the beginning of the pandemic.
For others, there has been the strain of home-schooling children while filing stories, or the risks of wading into public spaces to ensure video can be delivered to the public.
Going forward, many members are apprehensive about being in the middle of a busy workplace again, and facing close interactions with large numbers of people.
And what happens when the kids return to daycare?
CMG recognizes that the physical and mental stresses of Covid continue, and our union has been calling for special and meaningful recognition for each of you who have gone above and beyond during this difficult time. We have also asked that the popular “wellness” days be offered again this year.
On a practical level, CMG has been pressing the CBC to review current work processes. Suggestions for improvement include expanding remote working instead of retracting it, and acknowledging the heroes of these challenging times – those who set up the laptops, software, streaming and so much more.
Pandemic or not, temporary employees continue to live with uncertainty.
Many consider it an embarrassment that a public broadcaster has up to 30% of its workers on precarious short-term contracts, and temporary day-to-day assignments. This type of work brings with it additional health and safety challenges for these employees. For these and so many more reasons, it is critical that CBC address this inequity.
In the coming weeks, our union will hold a Town Hall to share information as members, our experiences of working during the pandemic and what we see as priorities in our work life moving forward.