Edmonton Area Council Meeting – January 20, 2014

Minutes from the January 20, 2014 Edmonton Area Council meeting. 

EdmontonArea Council Members
Chair, Sandra Relling – Present
Vice- Chair, Toby Pascal – Absent
Secretary, Robert L. Wolfe – Present
Treasurer, Darlene Lewis – Present
PSAC Reg. Rep, Oneil Carlier – Present

Participants – Other
Ben Lemon
Bhupinder Johal 
Dragana Ristvojevic
Chris Kelly                                       
Mel McLean        
Denise Davey             
Chantelle Favell-Rubenstahl            
Dave Burchell        
Cathy Thomas            
Garety Thomas

 1)     Call to Order

  • Meeting started at 17:35

 2)     Introductions

 3)     Minutes of December 3rd, 2013

  • Brian Smith made a motion to accept the Minutes.

  • All in favour – Carried.

 4)     2013 Financial Statement

  • The Treasure’s Report was read by Sandra Reilling, the 2013 EAC Treasurer.

  • The account balance will have to be updated.

  • Dragana Ristvojevic made a motion to accept the report.

  • The motion was seconded by Brian Smith – Carried.

  • Due to the fact that this was a “financial statement” it was brought to the floor that the Financial Report would require a ‘consensus’.

  • A consensus was reached – financial statement accepted.

 5)     President’s Report

  • Nothing added.  Accepted.

6)     Correspondence

  • This is a standing addenda item.

  • There is nothing to add.

 7)     MP Lobbying on Bill C-4

  • Darlene and Dexter lobbied MP Peter Goldring, and learned that he wasn’t at all familiar with Bill C-4.  He did however appreciate only being asked to comment on two issues.

 8)     Guest Speaker – REVP Sister Marianne Hladun

  • This evening, Sister Marianne Hladun who is Regional Executive Vice-President, Prairie Region has taken the time out of her busy schedule to say a few words at this meeting.”

  • Sister Marianne Hladun started off by commenting that she prefers to participate in meetings via tele-conference if possible due to her heavy travel agenda.

  • When question of whether PSAC has “a plan”, she responded that we do, but I can’t tell you what it is partially because it’s constantly changing, but we were reassured that it involves a comprehensive strategy that will take us to 2015.

  • Commented that the government is anti-union, and that we can’t let PM Herper get another majority.

  • PSAC has an “internal strategy” and there will be some information presented as we move forward as part of PSAC’s “complete strategy”, but at this point we’re not going to tip our hand to explain what it actually is.

  • Confirmed that part of the “strategy” involves member mobilization.

  • PSAC will begin developing bargaining demands and working towards collective agreements for our members – that’s how we’re proceeding as we work towards 2015.

  • At the national level, Sister Marianne Hladun mentioned that various unions working collaboratively have signed a “solidarity agreement”.

  • Comments were made regarding the regional convention that will be held on June 27-29th, 2014and the deadline for resolutions to be submitted is March 5th.

  • Every Local will have an opportunity to send on delegate and the name of that member has to be submitted by February 12th.

  • There was some discussion regarding the PRC Representatives and the process for them to get elected.  She also explained that because they are three year terms, you have to be elected, plus there has to be two alternates.  Specific reference was made to Section 11 (6) of the Regional By-Laws.

  • Committees need to have at least four meetings in a calendar year to maintain their status and their ability to participate in larger forums.

  • The membership should be prompted to draft resolutions.  Each of these resolutions should be clear (who / what) and be as detailed as possible.

  • It was noted that locally there will be a “Resolution Writing Workshop” in Edmontonthat will be held on Wednesday, February 5th.

  • The topic of “Resolutions of Record” were described as being “rarely negative”.

  • With all the social media at play, PSAC has a Face Book account, links to You Tube, Twitter Feeds and even an e-Newsletter, but PSAC members should be cautioned to only access the e-Newsletter via their non-work e-mail accounts only.

  • Sister Marianne Hladun spoke briefly of the Pledge Card Campaign, and how 30% of the addresses in the PSAC data-base are inaccurate.  There is a desire to update their central information.

  • More work will be done in the area of media relations and a positive example mentioned was the Canadian Labour Congress advertisements. 

              Question & Answer Session

  • Dragana Ristvojevic wanted to know why the grievance procedure takes so long.  Commented that it’s at the point where members start to get drained / tired.  The response emphasized the importance of submitting a grievance with the correct paperwork / proper documentation.  There was also a blanket statement that PSAC’s work regarding Classification has been overwhelming.

  • Robert Wolfe suggest that his Local has had some success with Informal Conflict Resolution as a first step, tat may lead to avoiding a grievance altogether.

  • Sister Marianne Hladun acknowledged that it’s important that we file grievances, but more importantly, it’s that we file the right grievances.

 9)     Yearly Planning

         a)    Strategic Direction

  • The Chair suggested that this agenda item be moved to another date, due to the current time.

          b)    Lobbying

  • No discussion.

          c)    Convention Resolutions

  • The Chair suggested that the EAC have a “Special Meeting” to discuss resolutions, and that this meeting be held at 5:30 PMon Wednesday February 12th.

  • Part of this meeting will be to select a PRC Representative that will be our delegate to the next PRC Convention.

  • The Chair stated that the next Edmonton Area Council meeting will be held on Tuesday, February 25th.

          d)    New Member Orientation Packages

  • The Chair acknowledged that we need more dialogue in this area.  We need more ideas and we need to create a course of action.

          e)    EAC in the Community

  • No discussion.

 10)   P-3 Public Forum – Public Interest Alberta, February 13th

  • Oneil Carlier presented an invitation offered by Public Interest Alberta for anyone to attend a public forum on taking action to stop privatization of public services, featuring an international speaker, Allyson Pollock, a leading authority on Public Private Partnerships (P3’s) and the privatization of public services.  The event will take place on Thursday, February 13th and the registration cost is $15 per person.
  • The Chair acknowledged that the Edmonton Area Council will be willing to fund this event for those members that wish to attend, but she would want a report delivered back to the EAC.
  • Bryan Smith made a motion that the EAC will fund the cost of registration for 10 members to participate in the P-3 Public Forum.  This motion was seconded by Dave Burchell.  Motion carried.

  11)   Election of Delegate to Prairie Region Convention

  • As noted earlier, this topic will be discussed as a part of the “Special Meeting” to discuss resolutions that will be held at a separate meeting.

 12)   Additions

  • Nothing added.  Accepted.

 13)   Round-Table

  • Ben Lemon mentioned that he needs five more “likes” to have his Local 30703 facebook page posted.

  • Mel McLean mentioned that there was a lack of opportunity to ask REVP Marianne Hladun questions.  He also presented his perspective of Bill C4.

 14)   Adjournment

  • Bryan Smith presented a motion to close the meeting.

  • This motion was seconded by Chantelle Favell-Rubenstahl and then carried.

  • Meeting adjourned at 20:08.