Discover Visible Labour, a Special Collections exhibit

Visible Labour: Activism and Solidarity in the CUPE B.C. fonds exhibit banner showing a CUPE rally at the Peace Arch
View Visible Labour: Activism and Solidarity in the CUPE B.C. Fonds, on display on the 3rd (main) floor of the W.A.C. Bennett Library.

What's on display?

Carved wooden CUPE sign

Donated by CUPE B.C., this fonds represents the history of the B.C. Division of CUPE (Canadian Union of Public Employees) from CUPE’s inception in 1963 and into the 21st century. 

The exhibit contains a selection of representative material.


The fonds includes:

  • Early NUPE (National Union of Public Employees) records
  • Convention proceedings, committee reports, agendas and resolutions
  • Transcripts and cassettes from the 1960s to 2000s
  • BC division Executive Board meeting files and recordings
  • BC Federation of Labour Convention proceedings (1980-)
  • Canadian Labour Congress convention materials
  • CUPE National Convention materials, president’s papers
  • Papers of past presidents and secretary-treasurers
  • Newsletters, bulletins and other periodicals, campaign materials, and banners and flags.

What is CUPE B.C.?

CUPE B.C. represents over 100,000 workers in more than 160 locals across the province.

Members work in hundreds of occupations and trades, including in municipalities, school boards, airlines, hospitals, nursing homes, libraries, colleges, universities (including SFU), social service agencies, the ambulance service, public utilities, and other institutions.


CUPE, labour, and activism

CUPE B.C. protesting

Labour unions, including CUPE, engage in activism beyond the workplace.

The history of CUPE B.C. represented in this collection includes activism for same-sex marriage, equality for women, and a host of other causes.

The fonds complements the large and still growing number of labour and activism-related collections in Special Collections and Rare Books (SCRB).

Learn more about SCRB or visit us on the 7th floor of the W.A.C. Bennett Library (Burnaby). 


March 31 - June 30
3rd floor, W.A.C. Bennett Library (SFU Burnaby)
Contact for further information
David Kloepfer at
Special Collections and Rare Books at