Minutes from the September 2014 Prairie Region Council meeting
PRAIRIE REGION COUNCIL MEETING MINUTES
September 22, 2014
- Marianne Hladun, Regional Executive Vice-President (REVP) Prairies
- Sam Akinsanya, Racially Visible Persons Rep
- Nathaniel Angus-Jackman, Young Workers Rep
- Satinder Bains, Regina Area Council Rep
- Denni Ernst, Northern Saskatchewan Rep
- Deanna Getz, Southern Saskatchewan Rep
- Alec Goertzen, Calgary Area Council Rep
- Jennifer Grant, North-West Manitoba Geographical Rep
- Kim Haynes, Persons with Disabilities (PWD) Rep
- Tim Hogan, Prince Albert Area Council Rep
- Sherry Hunt, Southern Alberta Geographical Rep
- Timothy Hunt, Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgendered (GLBT) Persons Rep
- Nancy Johnson, Regional Women’s Committees (RWC) Rep
- Glen Johnston, Westman Area Council Rep
- Chad Kemery, Separate Employer Locals Rep
- Gregory Krokosh, Lethbridge & District Area Council Rep
- Michelle Lang, Directly Chartered Locals (DCL) Rep
- Ben Lemon, Edmonton Area Council Rep
- Gus Mardli, South-East Manitoba Geographical Rep
- Jackie Nettleton, Saskatoon Area Council Rep
- Murray Pruden, Northern Alberta Geographical Rep
- Gary Sparvier, Aboriginal Peoples Rep
- Matt Tijani, Winnipeg Area Council RepA
- Lisa Garnier, Regional Coordinator – Prairies
- Jeffrey Vallis, Regional Political Communications Officer – Prairies
- Alison Davis, Executive Assistant to REVP – Prairies
- Susan Norman, Alternate REVP Prairies
- Robyn Benson, PSAC National President (a.m. only)
1. Call to Order: September 22, 2014
The meeting was called to order by Sister Marianne Hladun at 9:04 a.m.
2. Adoption of Agenda
The agenda was adopted.
3. Hours of Session
The hours of session were adopted.
4. Opening Remarks
Sister Marianne Hladun welcomed Sister Robyn Benson who will be joining the meeting for the morning.
Sister Benson highlighted the importance of working with other unions. She thanked the Council for the work they have done and will continue to do. She stressed that the number one priority of the PSAC is the membership.
5. Approval of Council Reports
There is a requirement in the PRC By-Laws for all Representatives to submit a report. The reports are attached as they are received.
The reports submitted were circulated and approved by the Council and can be found on the Prairies website
Additions to reports: All reports, for those present, will be adding the PRC Orientation and Prairies Summit.
- The coordination of the Prairies Summit has been the priority of the office since Convention. All of the finances are in the new accounting software except for the convention account.
- The Young Worker’s conference starts tomorrow.
- Wrote to MP re: National Public Service Week and will send a copy of the correspondence to Jeffrey.
- Is looking forward to establishing a connection with the other PRC Reps and creating a communication tree with her members.
- Had an opportunity to meet with the other Equity Reps and is very excited.
- Has been asked to attend the Brandon University Local AGM.
- Tomorrow there will be 24 participants attending the Separate Employer/DCL Conference. Will provide a report on the Conference at the next PRC meeting.
- Has participated in a conference call regarding the Separate Employer Conference which starts tomorrow and is looking forward to attending
- Participated in the Saskatoon Pride Parade. The Saskatoon Area Council gives an award to the workplace with our members that has the highest participation rate in the United Way Campaign. This year it was given to the Parole Board.
Alec asked if it was sponsored by the Area Council. Jackie advised that yes, it is and they now present it in front of their peers and it is very well received.
- Will be promoting the “We Are Wisconsin” documentary to his constituents in Northern Alberta.
- The World Pride event went as planned and Chris Little-Gagne and Kate Hart were selected to attend from the region. Both Pride parades in Edmonton and Calgary were larger this year and one of the booths at the Calgary parade was an anti-bulling booth sponsored by the Alberta government.
6. Approval of June 26, 2014 PRC Minutes
The June 26, 2014 minutes were approved by PRC who were on Council at the June meeting.
The January – August 2014 financial statement was presented. On the document there is a typo under the Actual column which should have August instead of March. All the information will go to the Finance Committee and they can discuss what format they would like to provide the financials in to the PRC. A breakdown of Convention costs for each Committee/Area Council/Circle was provided. There are still some outstanding claims that have not been received. What to do with the Committee/Area Council/Circle surplus will be brought to the next PRC meeting and the Finance Committee are tasked with bringing forward recommendations, as well as, what to do with the funds of any Committees/Area Councils that have an inactive status. Sr. Davis provided an overview of the initial Convention costs.
Sr. Hladun advised that a plan and costing will be created based on plans created at the Prairies Summit. Any spending of PRC surplus funds require Council approval. A recorded vote, at a later date, will be needed to either approve the use of a specific amount that can be directed by the Steering Committee or an official PRC conference call to approve a specific plan recommended by the Steering Committee. Funds from Ottawa are yet to be determined as a plan will need to be submitted to Ottawa by the end of November. The plan is submitted by the Regional Coordinator and will be shared once it is finalized.
8. Agenda Items
(a) Resolutions – submitted by Sr. Hladun
All resolutions dealing with by-laws and finances must be dealt with on convention floor. Spreadsheets detailing all resolutions and any further action were provided to the Council.
All By-laws concurrence resolutions were dealt with on Convention floor. The PRC By-Laws have been updated and a copy has been sent to the PRC and posted on the website.
Any resolutions that need to be sent to PSAC National Convention will be sent by the REVP’s office.
GEN-004 was carried and we will need to report that it has been actioned as it deals with PRC Rep reporting. Br. Glen asks if the requirement for PRC to provide written reports covers this resolution.
It will be referred to the PRC Standing Communication Committee as a priority and they will report back at the next PRC meeting to address how to action it so it meets the intent. Br. Johnston asks if contact info for locals will be made available. Sr. Hladun advises that lists could be made available. This will be discussed at the joint meetings between staff, PRC Reps and Committees/Area Councils.
Br. Hunt asks why Equity Reps can’t get lists from Convention. The REVP office will contact the Conferences & Convention Officer, in Ottawa, to ask about process and discuss sending out an email to those who self id’d to ask if they would be willing to share their contact info with the Equity Rep.
GEN-021 was heard not heard at Convention so cannot be put forward to PSAC Convention. Recommendation that PRC Standing Education Committee may want to discuss to see if this can be implemented on a regional basis within the Prairies Education plan.
GEN-028 No further action but Sr. Benson advised that there had been a request for a ruling and that there is nothing in the Constitution that says that Area Council and Committees Execs can’t exceed one year terms.
Br. Goertzen asked about the status of the Regulations from the conference call on Resolutions. Sr. Hladun advised that the By-Laws Committee will be tasked with the Regulations and Glossary and will present them at a PRC meeting.
(b) Committees – submitted by Sr. Hladun
The members of the five PRC Standing Committees were established. Committees will select their own Chair. The Finance Committee will hold a conference call to determine the Chair as not all members are present at the meeting.
Committees will be responsible for setting up their own conference calls. The Chair should contact Sr. Davis to make sure the line is available. If committees are looking for a break out room prior to the start of or during PRC meetings, the Chair should advise Sr. Davis prior to the meeting. The Convention Committee will be established in the early part of 2015.
Sr. Hladun encourages the Equity Reps, Geo Reps, AC Reps to organize conference calls should they want to have further discussions. The groups need to establish the date and time and contact the REVP office to make sure the line is available and get the coordinates.
The Committee members are as follows:
- Sam Akinsanya
- Satinder Bains
- Glen Johnston (Chair)
- Michelle Lang
- Jackie Nettleton
- Deanna Getz
- Sherry Hunt
- Timothy Hunt (Chair)
- Murray Pruden
- Matt Tijani
- Nathaniel Angus-Jackman
- Jennifer Grant
- Tim Hogan (Chair)
- Gary Sparvier
- Alec Goertzen
- Kim Haynes
- Nancy Johnson
- Gregory Krokosh
- Susan Norman
Health & Safety Committee
- Denni Ernst
- Chad Kemery (Chair)
- Ben Lemon
- Gus Mardli
(c) Campaign/Event support materials- submitted by Br. Goertzen
In the past, the Area Council has been able to receive materials for events that they participate in every year. If the Regional Office did not have enough then they made the request to the REVP office for materials. This year there were no additional materials available for GlobalFest and Labour Day. Br. Goertzen is wondering why the leftover swag purchased for Convention could not have been tapped into and how can the Area Council ensure it has appropriate material for these large events. Br. Goertzen advised that the AC also had difficulty getting printed materials.
Sr. Hladun advised that in 2012 there was a big push to do Summer activities and there was a budget from which to order these materials for the large events such as GlobalFest and the Red River Ex. That was one time money that was provided for those summer activities. The reality is that there is not a lot of money to spend on swag. When Area Councils and Committees are submitting their budgets for the year, they should include specific events and identify what is needed. The materials purchased for Convention were for resale. They were not purchased with the intention to distribute at events. When handing out swag there needs to be a commitment to having conversations and sharing a message.
The Communications Committee could look at these types of requests and make recommendations. Materials need to be union made so assistance can be provided to source those items.
(d) PRC monthly calls – submitted by Br. Goertzen
Br. Goertzen asked for an overview of the purpose of the calls for new Council members. Sr. Hladun explained that they had commenced at the end of 2012 on a set day every month for a maximum of one hour. They are not official calls and no decisions are made on them. The AEC meets monthly and it allows the opportunity to give a verbal update regularly instead of saving it all for the next PRC meeting. The information is shared in a timelier manner. It also allows the Council members an opportunity to share information. There have been no calls through the summer and Sr. Marianne is wondering if the Council wishes to continue with them. There has not typically been a huge turnout on the calls. Notes are distributed but they are for information only and not to be shared.
Br. Goertzen is also wondering if there is a need for the calls or if it needs to be postponed for a while. He wanted to raise it for discussion. Sr. Johnson asks if maybe quarterly calls should be considered.
The Council agrees to hold an update call on November 19 at 7:30 SK/MB 6:30 AB and revisit this discussion to decide on future calls. There will be a need for more official calls for Summit decisions.
The REVP office will look at scheduling 2015 dates in advance.
The webinar license for the region should be coming soon.
Action: Br. Vallis will look into different options for business cards and will send out the information.
(e) CLIFF (Canadian Labour International Film Festival) – submitted by Sr. Hunt
Sr. Hunt wants to bring CLIFF to the attention of the Council. It is a useful engagement tool that can be used and to sign up as coordinator is free of charge. It was used by the Lethbridge and District Labour Council last year and was a successful event and the films that come to the Festival are of very high caliber. There are films relating to every equity group. Sr. Johnson suggests that perhaps a movie night could be done at a future PRC meeting. Br. Krokosh advised that the press release for event was quickly picked up by the media. Sr. Hunt will send the information to REVP office.
(f) Solidarity in Pink (April 2015) – submitted by Br. Hunt
Solidarity in Pink started in 2013 by the CLC but they haven’t done anything with it since.
Sitting on the Alberta Federation of Labour there was a discussion on how to reach the youth and some posters were developed. They have tried to reach Alberta Education Minister and he will only allow the posters to be sent to high schools but nothing lower.
In 2015, Solidarity in Pink will be an anti-bullying campaign based on a pink shirt white shirt. Br. Hunt has approached the CLC in the Prairies and Alex Furlong has suggested a conference call across the Prairies which would include Unions, Fed of Labour etc. Would like to go to all the cities and get in touch with Gay Straight Alliance (GSA) to look at doing presentations in the schools to promote to the students that they can be anything they want to be and if they want to go into a union job they can. Looking for a panel which would include someone from a union or Fed of Labour, a drag queen and four other professionals who have made their life’s work to be whoever they are. They would have time on the panel to share who they are, where they came from, were they bullied, is there workplace safe, do they have coverage etc. There would be question answer segment at the end. Will also look at creating a t-shirt as a fundraising tool. Would like to see this happen in a minimum of three cities in the Prairies and hopefully it would take off across the country.
Sr. Hunt and Br. Krokosh have offered to assist with Lethbridge.
(g) REVP visits to regional offices – submitted by Br. Hunt
Br. Hunt would like to know when Sr. Hladun will be meeting with Committees/Area Councils as has been the past practice. There has not been a joint meeting for the past two years with the REVP. Sr. Hladun advises that it is in the works and Sr. Davis will be working with the Reps to establish dates.
Br. Hunt would also like notice when the Sr.Hladun will in the RO areas. Sr. Hladun advises that that is a point well taken and will try to make sure that her scheduled is shared when visiting RO cities.
Sr. Hladun advises that the Atlantic region books slots for the provinces which helps with planning and this is something the Prairies may want to consider trying.
A reminder that Area Councils and DCL’s are the only constituted bodies that can submit resolutions directly to the Triennial Convention. They are due in the REVP office by October 20, 2014. The date to submit names and the signing sheet for Triennial Convention is November 14, 2014. The Area Councils must have minutes for four meetings in the twelve months prior to the Convention Call.
Action – Get the twelve month interpretation from Ottawa.
Br. Johnston asks if the minutes can be posted chronologically. Br. Vallis will look into how they are being posted.
9. Roundtable Discussion
No time permitting.
Meeting adjourned at 3:12 p.m.