On Tuesday, more than 1,500 Insurance Corporation of British Columbia claims staff members took to the picket lines.
The escalated job action by the members of the Burnaby-based Canadian Office and Professional Employees Union, Local 378, went well, according to Sage Aaron, media contact for the union.
"Our members found a lot of support on the picket lines, lots of honks as people drove by," she said. "We had random folks coming up telling them they were doing a good job, dropping off coffee and donuts and that kind of stuff."
There are bargaining dates set with ICBC this week, and the union hopes the strike action will have moved things forward, she said.
"We are hopeful that this will have focused them on getting down to business to move towards a fair and reasonable agreement," Aaron said. "We'll just have to see what happens at bargaining before we decide what's next. If there isn't movement there we'll have to look at our options, but hopefully there will be."
Adam Grossman, senior media advisor for ICBC, said in a recent interview that he couldn't comment on any of the specific details of the negotiations.
The strike took place at 55 locations throughout B.C., including the Burnaby Claims and the Burnaby Litigation/Commercial Claims centres and the New Westminster Claims Centre.
The union participated in a strike with the B.C. Government and Service Employees' Union and the Professional Employees Association on Sept. 5, as well.
COPE 378 members voted 87 per cent in favour of job action on April 24.
But ICBC made an essential service application to the B.C. Labour Relations Board on April 19, suspending the union's ability to take action.
The board then handed down an interim order on June 13. The union could take job action with 48 hours' notice, "if the job action does not dip below the essential service levels applied for by ICBC."
ICBC has asked that claims, insurance and driver licensing services be declared essential during any potential job action. The order is in place until the board issues a final order after the essential service hearings are finished.
The union began job action in June with an overtime ban.
Union members also tried to engage in job action in July by attaching a signature to emails from their work accounts. The signature said, "We Work. You Drive. We Both Deserve Better." But a court decision has since prohibited the union from sending out information via work accounts.
ICBC's collective agreement expired in 2010. The two parties have been in negotiations since January 2011.