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Nov 19: Vancity takes leadership role

Vancity takes leadership role in addressing BC's work-life balance issues identified in report

Vancouver, November 19, 2003 - The findings of a work-life balance report released today that shows British Columbians losing the battle to balance their work and home lives has Vancity Credit Union vowing to lead by example.

The survey results, presented today at the BC Work-Life Summit in Vancouver by Carleton University professor Dr. Linda Duxbury, shows BC workers struggling with the rest of Canada to balance their work and home lives.

According to the survey, BC workers do not feel supported by their organizations and, in fact, experience the lowest job satisfaction in the country.

"Obviously this is a serious issue and we all need to do a better job at helping our employees cope with the competing priorities in this demanding world we live in," says Donna Wilson, Vancity's Vice-President of Human Resources.

Vancity is one local organization that has been leading the pack in terms of recognizing the issues of work-life balance and taking steps to address them.

Over the years, Vancity has implemented a variety of initiatives to help its employees find balance in their work and home lives. Some of these include care days that offer flexibility to deal with personal and emergency family illness; emergency child care; an employee assistance program that offers counselling to employees and their families; flexible work arrangements; paternity leave; and transition programs to help employees returning to the workforce after time away.

Vancity's progressive policies recently earned it a spot as one of Canada's top 100 employers in a Maclean's Magazine study and Wilson says the organization is determined to continue to create an example for other organizations.

"You need to pay attention to the changing work-life dynamic. Employees life cycles change and organizations change. At Vancity we continue to re-examine our programs, make changes where necessary and work with our leaders to ensure they are respectful of the work-life dynamic," Wilson says.

Donna Wilson will be available for futher comment at the BC Work-Life Summit or by contacting Sara Holland in Vancity's Public Affairs office at 604-877-7680.

Vancity is Canada’s largest credit union, with $9.3 billion in assets, 305,000 members, and 41 branches throughout Greater Vancouver, the Fraser Valley and Victoria. Vancity was chosen as the best place to work in Canada for 2005 by Maclean’s Magazine as part of its annual Canada’s Top 100 Employers issue. Vancity owns Citizens Bank of Canada, serving members across the country by telephone, ATM, and the Internet. Both Vancity and Citizens Bank are guided by a commitment to corporate social responsibility, and to improve the quality of life in the communities where we live and work.