Organizer I By-Election - Candidate Statements

Zhiyun (Richard) Peng

Hello everyone!

My name is Zhiyun (Richard) Peng and I am running for the position of Organizer I. I am a TA, RA, second year PhD student in computing science. I am a member in TSSU finance committee, membership mobilization committee. I am an occupational health and safety representative serving for South East Safety Committee. Also, I am a TSSU steward in school of computing science. 

With my experience in TSSU, my aims in this position are to:

1- increase cooperation within TSSU by recruiting more members to our committees.

2- making strong and active connections with other groups both on and off campus, to help better the situation of students and workers (eg, log the work time to make money, avoid revenge from course students)

3- develop our existing campaigns, esp. the RA contract.

Thank you for reaching up to this line! Wish you have a beautiful day 😀

Zhiyun (Richard) Peng

Felix Ruiz de la Orden

I have been a steward in the English Department since starting my master’s degree in September 2020. It seemed important to get involved with the union right away, considering I was starting my post as a teaching assistant early in the pandemic while many people were still getting used to working on Zoom. I wanted to help the teaching assistants, sessional instructors, and research assistants navigate their rights during a time when the university ramped up its exploitative practices. Since then, I’ve received training from the union on the collective agreement, the BC Labour Relations Code, the duty of fair representation, and discipline investigations. I have been a member of the Grievance Committee since December 2020 and have recently joined the Member Mobilization Committee in order to help with the hardball campaign to get research assistants a collective agreement.

This campaign is the most pressing issue right now. The current organizers have done a great job of coming up with a strategy to put pressure on the university. One of my first tasks as organizer will be to help continue and increase this momentum. As a steward, I got to know members not just in my own department but throughout the university. I’m eager to work with the MMC committee and with both the chief and departmental stewards to help further establish this necessary cross-departmental solidarity for the hardball campaign. I like to be hands-on in terms of door knocking and speaking to folks face to face, but I also recognize the importance of delegating tasks and running strong and consistent social media campaigns. Most importantly, I look forward to learning from members across the university how best to organize for them.

In solidarity,

Felix Ruiz de la Orden (he/him)

Come to our Candidate Meet&Greet to help you decide who you will vote!

Zoom link sent to your email on April 06th.

Election Timeline

  • Opening of nominations: March 23, 2022 (March GM)
  • Closing of nominations: April 6, 2022
  • Submission of candidate statements: April 6, 2022
  • Candidate meet and greet: TBD, 2022 (Link to be emailed)
  • Electronic election period: April 07-14, 2022
  • Results announced (via email): April 15, 2022
  • "Protest of Unfair Ballot" period: April 15-22, 2022
  • Results ratified: May GM, 2022
  • First day new officers can take office: Monday, May 2, 2022 (Executive will appoint as interim officer until ratification at May GM)

What if I Have Questions?

Thinking about running for a position, but want more information? Email and we’d be happy to answer your questions!


Organizer I: Salaried at 25 hours/week

Organizer I and Organizer II shall jointly be responsible for: 1) coordinating union campaigns and new member organizing drives; 2) the development and maintenance of membership networks; and 3) working with other parts of TSSU to achieve goals set by the membership. Each semester these officers shall agree on the division of duties outlined below: - Coordination of union campaigns and new member organizing drives, including: • working with the union’s committees and general membership to set campaign objectives and timelines; • coordinating volunteer networks and mobilization schedules, overseeing campaign communications, and managing teams; • identifying groups of workers with a similar community of interests to our membership who are interested in joining the Union. Development and maintenance of membership networks, including: • developing and maintaining a mapping system of the membership, work sites, common areas, bulletin boards, etc and relationships; • actively recruiting volunteers from within the membership, for committees, stewards, etc.; • developing membership outreach and education initiatives, which include, but are not limited to: workshops, socials, orientations, and trainings; • ensuring there is TSSU representation at departmental and special orientations including, but not limited to the International TA Program and the Teaching Orientation Program opening plenary. Working with other parts of TSSU to achieve goals set by the membership, including: • resourcing and coordinating the activities of the Membership Mobilization Committee (MMC); • ensuring that MMC activities support union campaigns, new member organizing drives, member education, as well as other internal and external outreach initiatives; • administering MMC’s membership, maintaining the committee’s internal communications, and calling meetings; • resourcing the activities of the Solidarity and Social Justice Committee (SSJC); • working with the Chief Stewards in the orientation and training of Stewards; • ensuring that Steward activities support union campaigns, new member organizing drives, member education, as well as other internal and external outreach initiatives; • working with the Chief Stewards in administering the Steward network and ensuring that its membership list is up-to-date.

Since 1978

The Teaching Support Staff Union (TSSU)