Vehicles hit striking casino workers in Kamloops

By Greg Fry
July 10, 2018 - 4:16pm Updated: July 11, 2018 - 12:17pm

KAMLOOPS — Striking BCGEU workers are alleging two of its members were deliberately hit by vehicles in separate incidents over the past few days outside Cascades Casino in Kamloops.

"Kamloops RCMP has been called twice regarding people who are picketers at Cascades Casino," says Kamloops RCMP Cpl. Jodi Shelkie.

"In both situations it was reported that a vehicle was attempting to go into the parking lot. The picketer was standing, blocking the roadway and the person who was picketing has stated that they felt they were hit by the vehicle or bumped by the vehicle."

However she says their investigation hasn't determined that this was the case.

"In both situations we've spoken to witnesses and at this time we can't say if the picketer was hit or not."

BCGEU President Stephanie Smith said she couldn't get into any specifics but said it's disappointing.

"Rather than respecting our picket lines and not crossing them, some cars are choosing instead to charge that line and it's resulted in injuries to our picketers."

She said one of the picketers was taken to hospital by ambulance while the union told another he should follow up with his family practitioner.

Close to 700 casino workers in Kamloops, Kelowna, Vernon and Penticton walked off the job June 29 due to differences over wages.

Both the union and employer Gateway Casinos are participating in mediation talks this week.


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