MFL Executive Council Report (Sept. 2013)

Report of the Regional Executive Vice-President, Prairies to the Manitoba Federation of Labour Executive Council submitted for the September 19-20, 2013 meeting. This report covers the period from the last MFL meeting.

Marianne Hladun, Regional Executive Vice-President
Public Service Alliance of Canada, Prairie Region
Report to the Manitoba Federation of Labour Executive Council
September 2013

On August 6, we embarked on an 18-day road trip from Edmonton to Winnipeg with one purpose: to collect as many stories as possible from PSAC members throughout the Prairie Region. In a matter of weeks, we interviewed 43 people in eight different cities across three provinces, and collected over 40 hours of footage.

We’ve already released a short trailer as a preview and the first video, “The Value of Unions”, will be released on September 23 with others following on a monthly basis. I encourage you to visit the PSAC Prairie Region website to view the videos as they are released and to share them among your own networks.

The project was produced with union labour, as we enrolled Shaun Roemich of Road Dog Media (Canadian Freelance Union – CEP 2040) as our videographer and editor. Brother Shaun has a long history of union activism and works regularly with labour bodies such as the Saskatchewan Federation of Labour, among others.

Throughout the summer, PSAC members in Manitoba were busy at various events and activities. Members volunteered at the PSAC information booth we had setup at the Red River Ex. Hundreds of patrons visited to spin the “We Are All Affected” prize wheel and discuss how cuts to public services are affecting their communities. It was a great awareness and information event, with positive feedback from attendees and members.

Members were also happy to march in the Pride Winnipeg parade in June, participate in celebrations for National Aboriginal Day and attend the Labour Day BBQ at Vimy Ridge Memorial Park, of which PSAC was a proud sponsor.

On a national level, PSAC members won an important victory in defence of collective bargaining recently. The government tried, but failed, to circumvent the bargaining process by forcing a group of our members to vote on an offer that was not agreed to at the bargaining table. PSAC presented its case to the Federal Court of Canada in order to defend the bargaining process and force the employer to return to the bargaining table to negotiate in good faith. The court ruled in our favour. As ever, we are prepared to bargain and call on CBSA and Treasury Board to respect the bargaining process.

For more information on anything mentioned in this report, please visit our website.

Respectfully submitted,

Marianne Hladun,
Regional Executive Vice-President
Public Service Alliance of Canada, Prairies