Greetings from Montréal! It is our last day at the 2019 CUPE National Convention and we wanted to send our membership a quick postcard before we head home to Victoria.
For those of you who are unsure about what happens at a CUPE National Convention, here is a quick summary. It is a week-long opportunity for delegates from CUPE locals across Canada and in many different sectors, to come together, learn more about the challenges that are facing other sectors in our union, hear committee reports from the different sectors and debate and vote on constitutional amendments and resolutions.
Our week started on Sunday afternoon, when we registered, received our convention packages (including a voting card and ballots) and participated in the library sector meeting. This was a chance to hear from the CUPE Libraries committee and discuss challenges facing libraries with members from other locals. The committee drew our attention to Resolution No. 150, submitted by CUPE Metro Vancouver District Council (B.C) and Locals 2329 (N.L.) and 1169 (Alta.). This resolution states that “CUPE NATIONAL WILL: Create a national campaign that increases awareness of the important services provided by CUPE library workers in public library boards, schools, and post-secondary education institutions. The campaign will highlight some of the key challenges experienced by CUPE library workers across the country.”
This resolution came to the floor yesterday afternoon, and I am pleased to report that following several eloquent speakers supporting the resolution, it was adopted! This is one example of a resolution that is important to our own sector, which we learned now represents over 22,000 library workers across Canada. Over the past week we have heard from many other sectors and adopted many other constitutional amendments and resolutions (a few have been defeated as well). We have heard how our union is supporting workers across this country and internationally. We are members of Canada’s largest union – now over 700,000 members strong! It was inspiring to hear how CUPE is working to fight for better workplaces, living wages, defending pension plans and health and safety protections. We also had the chance to hear from international labour activists, such as Sara Nelson, the International President of the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, AFL-CIO and Geici Maiara Brig, a union leader from SINTRASEB, Brazil. Our special guest on Wednesday was Jagmeet Singh, leader of the federal NDP party. You can read more about Sara Nelson’s visit here and Geici Maiara Brig’s here.
If members have any questions about this convention, please don’t hesitate to approach or email any member of the delegation – we will be happy to answer your questions. In addition, publications and reports can be found online at cupe.ca. Happy Thanksgiving CUPE Local 410!
Canada’s largest labour union keeps on growing as they announce their membership has reached 680,000 workers nationwide.
The latest figures come following a year of organizing successes across the country. Together in 2018, thanks to the hard work of CUPE staff, member organizers and activists, over 7,800 workers from a diversity of sectors joined the union. There is so much to be proud of.
CUPE represents workers in every province, working in sectors like child care, communications, education, emergency and security services, energy, health care, libraries, municipal, post-secondary, social services, and transportation. CUPE was founded in 1963 with 57,000 members.
Some of the members CUPE has recently welcomed are :
WestJet Encore Flight Attendants
TAPS (Together Against Poverty Society)
48 Professional Librarians from Surrey Public Library
18 Municipal and Library workers of Fort St James and 6 service workers from District of Mission
CUPE 374 and CUPE 1004 also welcomed members to their union
K-12 workers in Powell River welcomed 2 IT workers to their union
25 workers from Nelson CARES Society at Stepping Stones Emergency Shelter
Interested in how many Locals are in BC? Check out the link :
Vicki Sundher (Treasurer) and I (Darrell Joyce, President) have been enjoying our second day of conference, getting down to the nitty gritty of hearing all the committee reports and voting on resolutions. Highlights of the day include guest speaker Ivan Coyote (who you may remember from last year’s staff day for GVPL workers), who gave a moving and informative speech about their experience growing up as a transgender, nonbinary person. One thing that came from this speech was we ended up scratching out our “preferred” pronoun area on our credentials and instead wrote “uses” pronoun, as gender identity is not a preference. In fact, today a resolution was passed to look at using gender -inclusive language and moving away from gendered language, such as “brother” and “sister”–something we have already passed in our own local!
We also heard from outgoing CUPE New Brunswick President, Daniel Legére, about the plight of workers working in nursing homes in NB who have been prevented from striking by the NB government through various court injunctions and appeals. Delegates of CUPE BC showed their support in a Facebook live stream, video can be found on CUPE BC’s Facebook page and here is the embedded video:
Tomorrow, at lunchtime we are joining the student Climate Strike event at Victoria City Hall (time/location may change, so check here for up to date info: https://climatestrikecanada.org/)
This is not a labour strike (i.e. GVPL/AGGV staff are not striking!) but a student movement, which we are attending as guests. Anyone not working tomorrow, or on their lunch break, is welcome to join this public event. See the above website for details.
President, CUPE 410- Greater Victoria Public Library & Art Gallery of Greater Victoria Workers
CUPE Local 410 – President Darrell Joyce and Treasurer – Vicki Sundher are pleased to represent the “Greater Victoria Public Library Workers” and the “Art Gallery of Greater Victoria Workers” at the 56th Annual CUPE BC Convention.
CUPE marks International Workers’ Day 2019
On May 1, workers around the world rally to honour the fight for an eight‑hour workday, and to call for decent work, dignity and respect. CUPE recognizes International Workers’ Day, or May Day, in solidarity with millions of workers.
CUPE stands with all workers organizing for safe working conditions, a living wage, benefits and a decent pension, as well as for accessible, affordable public services. We draw inspiration from our international solidarity connections and the courage of workers who risk their lives every day for these demands.
Climate Strike Canada is part of the global youth-led climate school strike movement. Our mission is to steer Canada off our current path of social and ecological catastrophe; creating a better world by cultivating a culture of compassion and respect.
Inspired by the Fridays for Future movement, students and supporters across Canada will be striking en masse on May 3rd, 2019.
Climate justice is about more than greenhouse gas emissions. It’s about workers’ rights. Indigenous rights. Migrant justice. Anti-racism. Affordable housing. Each battle is entangled within another, and we can’t win any if we don’t unite to fight them all.
CUPE members, you are invited to participate in the CUPE National 2019
membership survey! This is your opportunity to anonymously and
confidentially provide your thoughts and experiences with CUPE National.
Fill out the form linked below so we can verify you are a CUPE member.
Once verified, you will receive a link to the full survey within a
week or so.