Deb Kosteniuk PRC Report May 2019

Deb Kosteniuk


Prairie Region Council February 2018


RWC’s were active across our region in the fall, winter and spring doing activities that support women in our membership and our communities.


The Winnipeg RWC is struggling; the chair had been unable to hold a meeting since last October and was finally able to hold an AGM on March 20, 2019.  Their goals for 2019 include participating in the National Day of Remembrance Brunch, donating towards the MFL Christmas Tree, The Provincial Council of Women’s Gala and participating in the region wide No More Fairy Tales/ campaign.   Chair Sheilagh Hanson hopes to take the RWC in a more political direction. 


The Edmonton RWC is very active.    They raised funds and purchased underwear, socks, gloves and bus tickets for Kindred House, they laid a wreath at the Remembrance Day Service, and they attended the AFL Brunch for the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women.  They held their AGM and Open House in December, 2018.  Much thanks to Patti Jessome and the past executive and welcome to Kim Cardinal and those taking positions on the 2019 Executive


Calgary held “A Union’s Place is in the Movies” night in September.  We watched Norma Rae and the realization of the conditions of workers and the lengths some companies went to stop organization of workers was our main topic of discussion. October 4 was the Sisters in Spirit Vigil; we donated $1000 towards the bagged lunches for participants and took part in the Vigil.  This Vigil continues to grow larger and stronger each year and is now receiving mainstream media attention.   In December we organized a toy drive for the Women’s Centre of Calgary, and got $1500 in toys and gifts from locals in the Calgary area.   The RWC members then volunteered in the toy room, helping women pick toys for their kids and then also getting mom a nice gift as well, wrapping them for them.  We participated in the Women’s March in January.   March 8, 2019 we, together with other unions and the Women’s Centre of Calgary, held a potluck dinner and celebration for International Women’s Day.  Our May 10th Bear Witness Day supporting Jordan’s Principle was a great success, attended by a large number of PSAC members at the Harry Hays Building, PIPSC members, some management and even members of the general public. CRA’s employer driven equity committee celebrated the day as well and advertised our event to all members and management.   Our executive remains unchanged from 2018.


Lethbridge RWC women are strongly involved in AC, and the two often meet on the same evening.   Lethbridge RWC again supplied a bouncy castle for the Lethbridge Labour Day Picnic, which always is a huge crowd pleaser.  Committee members made a financial contribution and attended the Lethbridge Sisters in Spirit Vigil on October 4.  They participated in the Person’s Day Brunch on October 10.  They donated $300 towards CIU Coutt’s food basket project.  They held a social in December, and also participated in Write for Rights that same month.  They participated in the Women’s March in January and served cake to members for IWD in March.  Lethbridge has been progressive, with the Chair position being co-shared for a time and now being held by Kris Slattery.  

Regina RWC:

The Regina RWC led their third fourth and final Mother’s Day Walk in 2018.  I believe they held a pancake breakfast in conjunction with the walk.  They participated in a Candlelight Vigil at St. Paul’s Cathedral for December 6th.  They did a donation for White Pony Lodge to make up gift packages for women working the streets; the packages would contain items like mitts/gloves, scarves, condoms and socks and also reach out to unionized hotels to donate toiletries to the packages.  They have had very good success with holding self defence courses for women, and they are looking to continue that with another course in 2019.    Michelle Lang remains chair and has a great Executive behind her.


Saskatoon RWC shows good rebuilding of the committee after a period of inactivity in 2017 into early 2018.  They acknowledged Orange Shirt Day Oct 30th, advocated for attendance at the LGBT Networking breakfast,   learned about Babes Who Brunch and empowerment of women; participated in the campaign on November 20; contributed to and participated in the Seasonal Social put on by Area Council; they retain their involvement with Moontime Sisters and the donation of menstrual products  and are looking to participate in the MMIW walk in May 2019.  Leila White has stepped down as Chair, and Corinne McKay is the new Chair. 


PRC Women’s Rep activities:           

Sept 2018 – participated in RWC A Women’s Place is in Her Union Movie Night

Sept 2018 – participated in Unions Work For Women course in Regina

Nov 2018 – participated in political action training in Winnipeg

Nov 2018 – attended PRC meeting

Dec 2018 – attended National Human Rights Committee Meeting

Dec 2018 – attended/participated in the Toy Drive drop off, Christmas Social Night

Dec 2018 – volunteered at the Toy Room, Women’s Centre of Calgary

Jan 2019 – attended IWD planning committee meeting

Feb 2019 – attended IWD planning committee meeting

March 2019 – teleconference call with steering committee for Regional Women’s Committee

March 2019 – attended IWD event

March 2019 – participated in lobbying at my MP’s office

May 2019 – participated in May Day rally, gave speech

May 2019 – sent out newsletter to RWC chairs

May 2019 – attended Bear Witness event


** Varying dates between Sept 2018 and present – worked on reviving “No More Fairy Tales” childcare campaign; various calls and emails throughout period