Calgary RWC Mtg Minutes – Jun 15 2015

In Attendance: Deb Kosteniuk UTE 30024; Arliss Chute-Ibsent USGE 30129; Vanita Svenninsen CEIU 300856; Ayanna Ayi CEIU 30856; Sonia Raiyarella UTE 30024; Tabassom Javadi SSO 30040

In Attendance:                                 

Deb Kosteniuk   UTE 30024
Arliss Chute-Ibsent USGE 30129
Vanita Svenninsen  CEIU 300856
Ayanna Ayi CEIU 30856
Sonia Raiyarella UTE 30024
Tabassom Javadi SSO 30040


Siobhan Hutchinson UTE 30024
Dolly Ablitt, Regional Representative

The meeting was called to order at 5:30 p.m. and copies of the Agenda and the Minutes of April 13, 2015 Meeting were provided to the attendees. Deb Kosteniuk noted that the meeting in May was cancelled because of lack of quorum.

Introductions were made and new attendees warmly welcomed by all.

The Agenda was reviewed. Deb Kosteniuk advised that the NPSW barbeque should be moved into the old business section, as it happened June 14, 2015. The Agenda was adopted by consensus of all members in attendance. 

Old Business: 

  1. Scotiabank Marathon – Tabassom Javadi registered our Team the “Sole Sisters” but she was the sole team member; no other women joined. Our goal was to raise funds for the Calgary Women’s Centre, but this was not a successful fundraising event. We had no other team members, and we didn’t devote the time required to solicit donations from the components, locals, friends, family. Deb Kosteniuk proposed that we may want to consider doing this event every other year.
  2. PSAC BBQ for National Public Service Week. This event, done in conjunction with the Calgary Area Council and Human Rights Committee, was held at Deerfoot Park from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. The day started with overcast skies, some showers, with the sun breaking through for a bit before there was a rainstorm. Posters were sent out to components and locals well in advance of the event, but attendance was poor. We had about 15 people turn out for the event, besides the organizers.   It was felt that weather was a real deterrent for people attending.  The BBQ featured hamburgers, veggie burgers, all beef hotdogs, five kinds of salads, strawberry shortcake and cold non alcoholic beverages. The Wheel and the bean bag toss were both on site; our volunteer drive was inhibited by the low number of attendees – we will have to find another way to solicit volunteers for our upcoming events and projects. Members from UTE30024, UTE30022, CIAU and UNE were in attendance.

New Business:

  1. The Beautiful Beginnings Baskets project has been pushed back to the fall. Project leader Siobhan Hutchison was successful in being accepted to the Prairie Union School for Women and felt she did not have the time to devote the project to have it up and running for NPSW. Deb Kosteniuk proposed that instead of sending just a poster asking that locals and components donate money, gift cards or actual items for a basket, we give them a recyclable shopping bag. The committee would drop off the bags, along with a list of items for the themes, and ask the components/locals to fill the bags within a set time frame. Then the RWC would pick up the bags and put together the baskets during a weekend “retreat.” Deb will research bags that do not have specific grocery store logos and e-mail communications can go out between members over the summer so we get this organized and completed successfully.
  2. Globalfest – the Calgary RWC partners with Calgary Area Council and Human Rights Council to staff the onsite tent, assist with the Citizenship ceremony and the Human Rights Forum that happens during Globalfest in August. Deb advised that PIPSC will be participating with PSAC for the first time and that about 21 volunteers will be needed for this event. Deb advised a call for volunteers for this event should be going out shortly.
  3. Labour Day BBQ – this is organized by the Calgary and District Labour Council and the RWC, CAC and HRC go in together and provide condiments, games and volunteers for the event. Deb advised a call for volunteers for this event will be going out fairly soon.

Budget Allocation Update:

  1. We have received our budget allocation from Regional. We had $1100 in the bank and received $1900, which gives us an operating budget of $3000 for 2015, which is the same as what we received for 2014. There are some changes in the way funding will be handled, and the allocation included instructions on how to request funds that fall under the domain of the special mobilization funding received by the Region.


Arliss had nothing for roundtable, neither did Vanita, Ayanna, Sonia or Tabassom.

  1. Deb discussed projects in line with Marianne Hladun’s discussion of a workshop – a one day event where a speaker could be brought in and it could be used as an opportunity to recruit members from locals who are on the fence about joining the committee and attending meetings. She also discussed us getting more political and take our place. Deb discussed possibly holding some kind of workshop that would get women more comfortable with lobbying MP’s, writing letters, taking steps to educate women about the issues that should be important to and discussed by the “Big 3” parties. This generated a lot of discussion.  Ayanna said it’s important to find issues that our members care about, like sick leave. The other attendees agreed, saying that they would prefer to see a series of workshops for women that dealt with things like doing simple mechanical work on a car (changing a tire, changing oil, air filters, etc); or workshops on DYI projects at home (repair the dishwasher, how to fix things that have small problems such as the flapper valve going in the toilet, changing the faucet or taps in the kitchen or bathroom; small reno projects; how to build a compost bin; how to change light fixtures; overall financial planning during a woman’s lifetime, how to tell if your toilet is leaking and what to do about it, what you need for a successful retirement, how to feel safe at night on the streets, self care for women etc.) These should be lead by women for women. 
  2. Deb advised that we would not be holding meetings in July or August, and would reconvene in September, perhaps earlier than the third Monday of the month, so we could get the Beautiful Beginnings Basket project completed. She advised that we would keep in touch by e-mail through these months, so that work could get done.

The Meeting was adjourned at 7:00 p.m.

Recorder:  Deb Kosteniuk, RWC Chair, UTE 30024