Gantry cranes used to load and unload container ships at the DP World terminal at port, in Vancouver, on Monday, December 28, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Gantry cranes used to load and unload container ships at the DP World terminal at port, in Vancouver, on Monday, December 28, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

10,000 B.C. longshoremen, warehouse workers to receive anti-harassment training

Campaign seeks to change a work culture divided along racial lines since the late 1800s: union president

A violence and harassment prevention training program aims to shift what has traditionally been the white, male-dominated culture of British Columbia’s waterfront workplaces.

Federal Labour Minister Filomena Tassi says the BC Maritime Employers Association, International Longshore and Warehouse Union and Ending Violence Association of BC have created a program to benefit 10,000 employees in ports along the B.C. coast.

A statement from Employment and Social Development Canada says the program is backed by a portion of $3.9 million in federal funding and provides training and education to support safer, more respectful workplaces, including for LGBTQ and Indigenous communities.

Rob Ashton, president of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, says the first-of-its-kind initiative underway on B.C.’s waterfront is not designed to “weaponize” anti-harassment training through discipline, although the program will have measures to encourage compliance.

Instead, he says it is based on the “Be More than a Bystander” campaign developed by the Ending Violence Association and will “start the healing” by changing a culture that Ashton says divided waterfront work along racial lines as far back as the late 1800s.

Tracy Porteous with the Ending Violence Association of BC says her group’s bystander campaign is a good fit for waterfront workers because it will add the “voices and committed interventions by men” to those of women and minorities already speaking up against workplace violence and harassment.

READ MORE: New program offers free legal advice to victims of workplace sexual harassment in B.C.

British Columbiaworkplace harassment

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

An agreement between the City and the Langley Lions Housing Society would set out income and age requirements for the new Birch replacement building (Langley City image)
Agreement on seniors rental building a first for Langley City

Sets several conditions to ensure project is affordable for low- and moderate-income seniors

Another member of the Peterson Road Elementary School community has tested positive for COVID-19, the Langley school district reported Saturday. (Undated Google Street View image)
Another COVID-19 case reported at Peterson Road Elementary School

School has reported two positive tests in two days

A crash in the 8600 block of Glover Road on Saturday night March 6, 2021 cut power to 1,000 BC Hydro customers in the for more than seven hours (Curtis Kreklau/South Fraser News Services)
Seveya Jepsen is inviting people to stop by her Pet Food Drive on Saturday, March 6, 2021. (Jepsen family/Special to the Langley Advance Time)
Langley girl’s 10th birthday goes to the dogs, and cats, and rabbits

Seveya Jepsen is concerned that animals have enough food so she’s hosting a pet food drive.

The Kimber family of Boston Bar lost their home in a fire. Blaine Kimber’s daughter created a fundraiser to help rebuild the home with the goal of $100,000. (Screenshot/GoFundMe)
Fundraiser created for Boston Bar family that lost everything in weekend fire

Witnesses say the Kimber family escaped the fire without injury, but their home is a total loss

(The Canadian Press)
‘Worse than Sept. 11, SARS and financial crisis combined’: Tourism industry in crisis

Travel services saw the biggest drop in active businesses with 31 per cent fewer firms operating

Pictures and notes in from friends and classmates make up a memorial in support and memory of Aubrey Berry, 4, and her sister Chloe, 6, during a vigil held at Willows Beach in Oak Bay, B.C., on December 30, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Mother of slain daughters supports recent changes to Canada’s Divorce Act

Sarah Cotton-Elliott said she believed her children took a back seat to arranging equal parenting

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Victoria man Brett Andersen is asking for people’s help to secure him one of eight free tickets to the moon. (Screenshot/@brettandersen Instagram)
Victoria man wants your help securing a free ticket to the moon

Japanese billionaire offering eight people a trip to the moon

The Conservation Officers Service is warning aquarium users after invasive and potentially destructive mussels were found in moss balls from a pet store. (BC Conservation Officers Service/Facebook)
Aquarium users in B.C. warned after invasive mussels found at pet store

Conservation officers were told the mussels were found in a moss ball from a Terrace pet store.

Hockey hall-of-fame legend Wayne Gretzky, right, watches the casket of his father, Walter Gretzky, as it is carried from the church during a funeral service in Brantford, Ont., Saturday, March 6, 2021. HE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Walter Gretzky remembered as a man with a ‘heart of gold’ at funeral

The famous hockey father died Thursday at age 82 after battling Parkinson’s disease

Most Read