A lifelong social activist, Arliss credits her involvement in the union to her father. He had much in common with Tommy Douglas and spoke often of his encounter, as a young man, with this social justice advocate. Her dad lived out these values and involved his children in this lifestyle.
In 2009, when shop stewards were needed at Drumheller Institution, Local 30028, Arliss stepped into her first role with PSAC. It was here that she started to connect with other PSAC members from across the province, region and country. She saw and learned how Canadian workers could and should stand together in solidarity with our counterparts around the world.
Arliss transferred to Bowden Institution, Local 30129, in 2011 where she again was able to put her skills as shop steward to use. In the intervening years she has also been elected as Secretary, Vice-President and President of this local. Women’s rights are also an issue she has been involved in and continues to attend and participate in the Calgary Regional Women’s Committee. She has also gained experience by being part of an EB table sub-committee which proposed a new pay grid for 12 month teachers, to TB in June 2018.
Through her involvement with the union Arliss has had the opportunity to further develop her leadership skills, attend union courses, co-facilitate union courses and network with union activists across Canada through various conventions.
As a 12-month Correctional Educator (teacher) at Buffalo Creek Learning Center at Bowden Institution, Arliss experienced firsthand the financial cuts that Harper’s Conservative government inflicted on the public service and in particular Correctional Service Canada. Now she watches as the Liberal government who had promised much, give very little, reroute finances to other areas and ignore their biggest asset – their dedicated employees who everyday in the face of a myriad of challenges continue to go to work.
Realizing the importance of the current bargaining round she is excited to be part of the EB Table. Arliss looks forward to serving all the instructors, teachers and librarians of the EB-table in the Prairie region.