PSAC Winnipeg Regional Woman’s Committee WRWC
Meeting Minutes for Feb 7 2022
Nicole Papineau, Mona Simcoe, Faye Kingyens, Martha Johnson PSAC rep
Call to Order: Meeting opened at 7:04 by Nicole
PSAC Statement on Harassment – Martha Johnson designated recipient
Guest speaker: Laura Avalos, PSAC Social Justice Fund Advisor
We invited Laura Avalos to our meeting to talk about the Social Justice Fund (SJF). To give members a better understand of what this fund does.
Laura introduced herself and gave a power point presentation on the PSAC Social Justice Fund. There are 4 elected officers, including our own Marianne Hladun REVP for Prairie Region, who make up the steering committee. They meet 6 times per year to select the projects that are to be funded. Funding comes from our collective agreements via member contributions, employer contributions and joint employer/employee contributions. These funds work to support humanitarian relief such as during the floods in Southern Alberta in 2013, and fires in Fort McMurray in 2017. The fund is also used to provide anti-poverty support through the Women’s Healing Centre in Winnipeg, the Calgary Women’s Centre and the Saskatoon Literacy Fund. The fund also works to support International Labour Solidarity by fighting for the rights of workers and their unions. The SJF has been active in the Prairies since 2007.
Laura informed the WRWC on how to promote the PSAC Cafe Justicia coffee as a means of promoting this fair trade++ with grassroots and indigenous rights and the SJF.
Members were made aware of the Emergency and Resilience fund, where initiatives by members-supporting members are set up. An example is the BC flood relief that UNDE members donated to at their last convention. Many members have questions on how and where money could be distributed to most benefit members. The SJF takes this worry out, knowing how to best support these causes on our behalf.
During our meeting, a member asked about how she could help with food insecurities in the North and anti-poverty initiatives in Nunavut. This is another example of the Emergency and Resilience fund work and donations to this go to help these initatives. We talked about how we are always trying to “reinvent the wheel” when we have the SJF to guide our fundraising and support efforts.
The SJF supports the YW Education in Action project, Sister Jennifer Botincan from Wpg participated and came back to the region educating the grass roots level on the benefits of the SJF and all that she learned with her Blog.
A discussion followed as to how best support the Fund. Laura will check to see if we can post the PowerPoint presentation to our members on Facebook. Laura also suggested that during emergency situations such as the flood in Alberta that we can encourage members to donate to the Social Justice Fund as 100% of donation goes to the cause.
The promotion of the right to decent work, quality public services, human rights and equality are cornerstones of the PSAC Social Justice Fund. Through education, mobilization and empowerment, PSAC’s Social Justice Fund works to advance the role of our members in building stronger communities, a better country and a more just and humane world.
The labour movement has an important role in fighting the social and economic inequities that impact the lives of workers and people in Canada and around the world. The Social Justice Fund is one of PSAC’s contributions to that struggle.
Our committee agreed that a short presentation by the SJF at the PSAC convention in May would be a huge benefit to the members. Two minutes at a booth does not allow time to learn about all the work the SJF does. A conversation on the floor would give the basics and then questions could then be taken at their booth afterwards or if time allowed from the floor. This would tie very nicely with the Canadian Human Rights Museum location for convention. Mona Simcoe will send this request this to the PSAC convention organizing committee and the NBOD.
-see SJF power point attached
-see request SJF presentation to convention request attached dated 8 Feb
-see follow up from Laura Avalos dated 10 Feb
Secretarial Notes added:
Sister Nicole Papineau was interested in the receiving more information on projects SJF supports in the North regarding food security in particular.
Here’s a list of projects SJF supports via the Anti-Poverty initiatives Fund in the North and the Nunavut Fund such as food banks and Nunavut Literacy Council that is leading a program related to traditional food preservation.
Hay River Soup Kitchen and Food Bank – Northern Region
The Hay River Soup Kitchen is also a food bank. It feeds up to 70 people day, six days a week. It provides close to 100 hampers monthly, with a growing demand, particularly in the winter months. The whole operation is based on volunteer support who prepare and serve the meals and apply for grants. This foodbank has been struggling to make ends meet over the last couple of years due to rising food costs in the north. The Hay River Soup Kitchen has received support in the past from UNW locals and PSAC North due to the food crisis in the community,
Ajagutag Food Bank – Artic Bay, Nunavut
Food security identified as the main problem in Arctic Bay.
Out of a total population of 870 people, 33% suffer from food security,
Nunavut Literacy Council – Ranklin Inlet, Nunavut
Nunavut Literacy Council will be delivering 4-part imbedded Literacy program related to food preservation. food preservation courses. Food security – how to process, prepare and preserve Cariboo meat, Muskox, Char, Beluga and berries. Families would learn how to preserve and store foods that are in abundance at certain times of the year.
Abluqta Society Food Bank – Baker Lake, Nunavut
Addressing food insecurity in the community
Information was also requested regarding projects that support indigenous women rights along the highway of tears. We have projects that deal with Indigenous communities from the beginning and end point of the Highway of Tears, although they don’t specifically deal with the crisis of disappeared women or lack of safe transportation for them. We support a shelter run by the local Friendship Centre in Prince George.
Prince George Native Friendship Centre – Prince George, BC
The SJF is supporting Tse’Koo Huba Yoh transitional housing unit for aboriginal women.
The Prince George Native Friendship Centre has joined with BC Housing to operate a 17 unit supported housing for adult women, who face multiple barriers that keep them from living stably and independently. Tse’Koo Huba Yoh is designed to address the needs of the most vulnerable people in the community through the provision of an affordable and safe “home” supportive atmosphere thereby facilitating their transition to greater stability.
Nicole thanked Laura for the presentation and meeting continued.
Adoption of Agenda –
Motion Nicole Papineau/Faye Kingyens
Adoption of Minutes – Dec 13, 2021 minutes
Motion Nicole Papineau/Mona Simcoe
Adoption of Minutes – Jan17, 2022 minutes
Motion Nicole Papineau/Mona Simcoe
Note: Nov 15 minutes not yet received to committee
Treasurer’s report – Faye Kingyens.
Opening Balance $1,213.99
MAWS $100.00 Survivor’s Hope $100.00 North Point Douglas Women’s Centre (Nicole Papineau) $283.76 to top up hamper baskets.
Closing Balance $730.23
Motion Faye Kingyens, Mona Simcoe.
Martha Johnson will look into the requirement for the year end audit.
– Volunteers are being requested for the 2022 Women’s Retreat Organizing Committee. An email
has gone out from PSAC with a deadline to apply by Mar 8. All Prairies self-identified women are invited to apply to help shape and organize the women’s retreat happening FALL 2022. Are you looking for a new way to get involved? Are you passionate about advancing the rights of women identified members? Are you interested in creating a completely unique and engaging event? If you answered yes, consider taking up the role as event organizer and join other like-minded individuals to create a unique experience based on discussions, movement, action and connections. If you are intrigued and interested in rising to the challenge and answering our call out – we have a new and fun way of ensuring everyone has an equal opportunity to be considered. We are asking prospective members to listen to the podcast from, journalist, author and activist, Nora Loreto. Based on her book, ‘Take Back the Fight: Organizing Feminism for the Digital Age’ with twelve episodes.
Take Back the Fight – Fernwood Publishing The book/podcast contents will create the base for organizing committee discussions and ensure a new and inclusive approach to the retreat.
- WRWC Living Calendar reviewed upcoming events.
- March Internal Women’s Day speaker to be selected. Meeting will be March 8th.
- The Bear Clan engaged walk April 8th – Nicole Papineau to organize event
- Earth day clean up April 22 – Mona Simcoe to organize event
- Facebook Group – PSAC Winnipeg Regional Women’s Committee
Next Meeting Date – March 8
Adjournment – Nicole Papineau 8:46pm