Drivers deserve better

Union employee responds to South Okanagan letter writer.

The recent letter by Tom Isherwood on ICBC was right about one thing — B.C. drivers are paying too much for car insurance.

As a matter of fact, that’s what our union, which represents approximately 4,600 workers at ICBC, has been saying for over a year. But it’s not because of ICBC workers and it’s certainly not because ICBC doesn’t have the money to make insurance rates more fair.

ICBC is a profitable corporation, but it wasn’t designed to be the government’s cash cow.

Precisely because ICBC is public, it has better coverage at lower rates than private insurance in other provinces.

It’s also made effective investments in improving safety, making roads less dangerous and rates cheaper for everyone.

So when the government raids $1.2 billion of the profits, it has a real impact. Drivers end up paying more and workers who have been without a raise for three years are left behind.

All our union is asking for is lower rates for drivers and a fair and reasonable deal to stop our members falling behind the cost of living. We are committed to negotiating and to not taking job action that would inconvenience the driving public.

Both drivers and ICBC employees deserve better than what they’re getting now.

Jeff Gillies,

vice-president, Canadian Office and Professional Employees Union, Local 378