Vancouver Police Union

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VPU logo.png
Full name Vancouver Police Union
Founded 15 July 1918
Members 1,450[1]
Affiliation CPA
Key people Tom Stamatakis, president
Office location Vancouver, BC Canada
Country Canada

The Vancouver Police Union (VPU) is a trade union representing 1,450 front-line police officers, jail guards and special constables of the Vancouver Police Department in Vancouver, Canada.[1]


The Vancouver Police Union received its charter from the Trades and Labour Council (TLC) under the name Vancouver Police Federal Association, Local 12, on 15 July 1918, making it the second unionized police force in Canada. Unlike many other police unions, the VPU survived the backlash against police rank and file organizations following the British police strikes in 1918 and 1919, the Boston Police Strike, and the Winnipeg General Strike of 1919. Police unions were outlawed in many jurisdictions and subsequently reduced to "police associations." As a result, the VPU was the first police union certified under the new industrial relations regulatory regime in 1945, and remained one of the few rank and file police organizations that were covered by labour legislation. It therefore enjoyed an advantage in collective bargaining with such things as mandatory arbitration in disputes with management compared with other police organizations.[2]


The VPU is the collective bargaining agent for approximately 1300 members of the Vancouver Police Department and negotiates labour contracts. It also represents its members in disciplinary cases and cases relating to the Workers' Compensation Act and Employment Standards Act. Through its president and spokesperson, Tom Stamatakis, the union acts as a political lobby on behalf of its membership, and has taken a strong position on issues such as the Insite safe injection site in Vancouver, calling it an "unmitigated disaster" for the Downtown Eastside and claiming that all it has accomplished is the creation of a "sense of entitlement" for the neighbourhood's drug addicted population.[3] The union has also questioned the credibility of Sam Sullivan in his capacity as chair of the police board.[4] Critics of the Vancouver Police have been publicly denounced by the union, particularly lawyers Phil Rankin, Cameron Ward, and John Richardson of the Pivot Legal Society.[5]

Union president Tom Stamatakis is also the vice-president of the Canadian Police Association. The Vancouver Police Union’s office address is 1819 Victoria Diversion, Vancouver, BC.


  1. ^ a b "Welcome to the Vancouver Police Union Website". Vancouver Police Union. Retrieved December 1, 2016. 
  2. ^ Fleury, Barbara Ann Sozan (1988). The Historical Development of Police Unionism: Three Case Studies from British Columbia. MA thesis, Simon Fraser University. 
  3. ^ Stamatakis, Tom (11 April 2007). "Email to CKNW - Bill Good Show" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2007-10-07. Retrieved 2007-07-19. 
  4. ^ "Turn on the Red Light". The Thunderbird. 10 November 2005. Retrieved 2007-07-19. 
  5. ^ Howell, Mike (5 August 2004). "Fighting the Law". The Vancouver Courier. Archived from the original on February 25, 2005. Retrieved 2007-07-19. 

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