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2017 – A Christmas Message

Warmest Christmas Greetings to All Our Members in 464,

As this calendar year comes to a close, turning out the lights on 2017, I reflect upon the year that was. I am thankful for all the members who gave of their time in 2017.

Early in the year, the Teamsters in BC took part in an event that we have participated in for over 40 years: Variety’s annual Telethon. BC Teamsters have partnered with Variety, the Children’s Charity, since the inception of its annual telethon in 1976. This year, we provided over 100 volunteers once again, assisting with parking lot management and controlling access to the secured areas of the annual event, which now takes place at the Hard Rock Theatre in Coquitlam.

We have also seen a number of members come forward for the first time to serve as Shop Stewards or Bargaining Committee members.

Our Stewards are truly the lifeblood of the Union movement and quite often it is a thankless job. By putting themselves in the line of fire to protect/assist a fellow member in a time of need, there is frequent criticism of how issues are dealt with and the Steward is unable to defend themselves without disclosing what is quite often sensitive, private information pertaining to the worker represented. Please show your support for your Stewards and be more understanding when they are unable to explain what exactly happened in that meeting. By supporting your Stewards, you are helping to make for a better functioning Union movement within your workplace.

Members who serve on a Bargaining Committee are your representatives in negotiations and are privy to all discussions and arguments both in favour of and in oppositions to yours and the company’s proposals. Quite often they do not receive the positive support I would expect from their co-workers. It is a fact that they are in a difficult position and do a lot of work on behalf of the membership and are deserving of respect and appreciation.

I am also very thankful for our support staff here at the Union office. Lori and Blythe have been invaluable in the work they do to keep us all on the right track and put in dozens of hours work to assist in the design of the Local’s new merchandise as well as the planning that went into the Shop Steward Seminar we hosted in the first week of December.

As well, I am extremely thankful for the many, many members who have been so very supportive of their Local Union and its Officers for such a long time, through hard times and not-so-hard times, and we cannot be successful in our endeavors without the support of the membership. You are the reason we do the work we do and you typically make difficult times much easier to bear.

And lastly, whether you choose to recognize Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa, the Solstice or any other winter celebration, on behalf of all of us here at Local 464, I would like to wish you the very best over the Holiday Season and that you have a safe, reflective, energizing celebration surrounded by loved ones.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!




Paul Barton



News Archive


For 35 years I have been a Teamster and a Dairyworker, I was a young kid needing a job in tough economic times. I found a place to work and make a living, I learned to work together with others having varying and different backgrounds than my own.

Much has changed for me personally and professionally, I got married to my beautiful wife of almost 25 years and we have raised two amazing children, both of whom are presently studying abroad. Both of my children were recipients of Hoffa Memorial Scholarship Funding.

So much of my success I can credit to having a well paying union job. The Teamsters have been a great union for me, negotiating strong collective agreements that held good wage and benefit packages as well as the cornerstone beliefs of seniority and workers’ rights. The Teamsters gave me a good wage and a voice.

I have always been an active Teamster, and now I sit on Local 464's Executive Board.

There can be a great degree of personal feelings when the word union is mentioned, but so often I look at professional associations and realize the name may be different, but the thought is the same...strength in numbers.

As I get toward the end of my career, I look forward to the thought of receiving the Teamsters Canada Pension Plan, and I am so grateful for the belief others had before me that Teamsters deserved a good and decent retirement...thank you.


- Drew Speirs

"I have been a member of Teamsters Local 464 for 23 years and have seen many of the executives come and go. Some of the previous executives nearly ran the Local into bankruptcy including losing our pension.  Bobby Kornhass, Bob Ryder and Paul Barton brought us back from the brink. Since they took over in 2000, we at Dairyland (Saputo) have had the best contracts I have seen since I have been there."

- Randy Onyschak

“They have demonstrated the dedication and leadership that
our Local requires. They have always provided sound counsel, support, and frank
discussion on matters involving the members, contract negotiations and our

- Bruce Tillapaugh –Shop Steward. Island Farms, Victoria