As part of our work as health and safety representatives on the PSAC Prairie Region Council, we want to talk to members about who we are and what we do and keep our members informed about health and safety issues.
The Prairie Region Council (PRC) is a 24-member group, headed by Regional Executive Vice-President Marianne Hladun. The committee is made up of geographic representatives, area council representatives, equity representatives, as well as representatives for separate employer locals, directly chartered locals, and young workers.
The council comprises several committees, including the Health and Safety Committee: Alec Goertzen, Clint Wirth, Nancy Johnson, and Bruce Campbell (staff regional health and safety officer).
Our responsibilities on the committee include taking a lead role in the planning of the Regional Health and Safety Conference, as well as acting as advocates for health and safety initiatives in the region.
We will be using this avenue to address issues and create a dialogue regarding issues that our members are facing. This could include current topics in health and safety, upcoming events, common issues our members are facing, as well as resources and contacts our members can use for their workplace.
Since this is our first communication, we want to formally introduce ourselves.
- Alec Goertzen, Alberta Representative
Alec is the Calgary Area Council Rep on the Prairie Region Council. He has worked for the federal government for 26 years and currently works as a Trade Compliance officer with Canada Border Services Agency.
His vision for healthy and safety on the PRC is to ensure members have the tools needed to be effective on their workplace committees, and to give them the power to hold their employer accountable under for a safe and healthy workplace for our members. Whether through offering supportive training, or ensuring a response is given from our internal resources to act on an issue, it’s all about working and standing together on the promotion and maintenance of the physical, mental and social well-being of workers in their workplace.
- Clint Wirth, Manitoba Representative
Clint is the South-East Manitoba Rep on the Prairie Region Council. He has been a PSAC member for 15 years, working at Deer Lodge Centre in Winnipeg as the Central Sterilization and Reception Aide. Clint also represents the PSAC at the MFL Health, Safety, and Environment Committee.
With his experience in the healthcare field, Clint has quickly learned the importance of health and safety in the workplace. It is a field where many different hazards are prominent, and the hazards can impact the health and wellness of both the employee and the client. He hopes that his knowledge and experience can be of assistance to others addressing health and safety concerns in their workplaces. Clint feels that one of the most important issues in the health and safety field is mental health in the workplace. Legislation and workplaces are changing quickly to cover this, and we need to stay on top of the changes and resources available.
- Nancy Johnson, Saskatchewan Representative
Nancy is the Regional Women’s Committee Rep on the Prairie Region Council. This is Nancy’s second term on Council, previously serving as the Northern Saskatchewan Geographical Rep from 2008-2011. She has been with the federal government for 11 years and currently works as a Collections Officer.
With over 10 years of health and safety experience, including with WCB Ontario, as H&S committee chair and provincial representative, Nancy sits as workplace co-chair on OHS. She is a strong advocate for the rights of employees and is very knowledgeable about current issues in the health and safety field. She looks forward to being another strong voice when it comes to our members and our health and safety.
In upcoming posts, we will be presenting some information on mental health in the workplace, asbestos awareness and safety, creating effective workplace committees, and the National Day of Mourning, just to mention a few.