Hiring For Diversity

November 23, 2017

For immediate release November 23, 2017

Langley, BC – A new initiative to establish more diverse employee opportunities that began in the winter of 2016 has resulted in the creation of a new position for the Langley School Board Office.

The process began when a partnership between the Langley Association of Community Living (LACL) and the Langley School District was established that allowed the district to participate in the LACL Partners in Employment program. The ultimate goal of the partnership was establishing employee positions within the district that would be available to persons with developmental disabilities, many of whom are graduates of the Langley School District.

“Establishing unique employee positions in a unionized workplace is not a simple process”, said Director of Human Resources, Barry Bunyan, noting there were occasional setbacks. However, through negotiation and discussion, a Letter of Understanding (LOU) was reached with representatives from CUPE 1851. The LOU outlines the working conditions for the new position of Diversity Custodian Assistant and, through cooperation with CUPE 1851, allows for the suspension of regular posting and filling language in the collective agreement to accommodate the hiring process. The LACL will work closely with the district to assess the position and its physical demands. An individual will then be hired based upon the recommendation of potential candidates from the Langley Association of Community Living.

“This is a fantastic opportunity to model the hiring of persons with developmental disabilities”, noted Director of Learning Support Services Lisa Dolinski. “We often place students in work experience programs around the community while they are students but this time we can potentially hire one of our own graduates”, she continued.

While the Diversity Custodian Assistant position is set up as a one-year term, it is the hope of all parties that the initiative will continue well into the future.