Marianne Hladun PRC Report (Mar. 2012)
Report of the Alternate Regional Executive Vice-President, Prairies to the Prairie Region Council submitted for the March 16-17, 2012 meeting. This report covers the period from the last PRC meeting.
Marianne Hladun, A/REVP
Report to the Prairie Region Council
Activities since the last PRC meeting have focused on awareness of the potential threats looming in the upcoming federal budget.
I have attended both the Agriculture Union local AGM’s in Saskatoon and Melfort and reported on the ThirdChoice.ca campaign. In December, as a Vice-President with the SFL, I reported to Executive Council on ThirdChoice and the cuts that have already been announced leading up to the budget.
As a member of the CFIA bargaining team, we met in both December and January with the employer. The results to date have been mostly unproductive and we are preparing for CFIA’s response to our economic package when we meet again just prior to the March PRC meeting.
I have used every opportunity to raise awareness of the vital public services our members deliver. Through the SFL Political Strategy Committee, the United Way of Saskatoon Board & staff retreat, United Way Labour Task Force and debrief events for the provincial Labour Issues Campaign. I have personally spoken with 5 of the NDP Leadership candidates and asked about their position on cuts to public services. No surprise, but the responses were favorable and they committed to standing together with us in this fight.
Many thanks to the Saskatoon Area Council, RWC and Agr. Local 22 for hosting the annual Holiday Social at the Regional Office. It’s always a great opportunity to relax and visit with fellow activists in the community.
In February, I attended the Steward Assembly at the Saskatoon Regional Office. It was encouraging to see many new faces and to hear the commitment from local Stewards. Education and the opportunity to use that education will take us where we need to go.
Also, in February, I attended the Saskatoon & District Labour Council AGM and Community Service Award Dinner. Keynote speaker was Brother Ken Georgetti, CLC President. His address to delegates outlined the value of public services and how unions need to rethink how we do things to maintain an effective momentum. He also suggested that PSAC develop a DIY self-test kit so people can inspect their own food. Maybe he’s on to something there?? Several PSAC members responded with comments and questions and the business cards with the thirdchoice.ca website were distributed to all delegates and observers.
I also had the extreme honor of being invited to be on a panel for the NextUp program. One of the goals of NU is to build and support a network of young social change leaders across Western Canada. Other panelists included a representative from the Saskatoon Anti-Poverty Coalition and Robin East, a former PSAC activist working on accessibility and human rights issues. There is nothing more invigorating than spending an evening with 10 young activists talking about Lobbying and Advocacy. They wanted to know what that means, how to do it and why we do what we do.