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Campus access to public water dwindles: study

Water fountains are becoming an endangered species on university campuses across Canada while the vending machines multiply, according to a new Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives survey. 

The survey covers the general commercial or corporate presence on campus; contracting-out; exclusive beverage marketing; access to drinking fountains/tap water, and campus action in response to these trends. 

Among its findings:

• 79% are fast-food suppliers on campus;
• 79% of activities, like Welcome Week or Spirit Week have corporate sponsors;
• 54% said their campus had an exclusive arrangement with Coke, and 40% an exclusive arrangement with Pepsi.

Commercialism on campus is a trend we know is on the increase,” explained Erika Shaker of the CCPA.  “The responses to this survey provide a preliminary look at the effects of this trend on campus life, from sponsored activities and research to the most basic:  access to tap water.”

CUPE sponsors indie music festival with social justice flair 

CUPE National, along with CUPE locals 15 and 391 reached out to young workers as sponsors of Vancouver’s first annual Justice Rocks event. 

The event fused indie music with themes of social justice.  Over 500 people heard from an impressive line-up of local indie musicians and had the opportunity to talk to many advocacy and community groups, including CUPE

CUPE’s Young Workers’ Task Force staffed the tent and talked to people about CUPE’s place in the community and what unions do for communities. 

Trevor Davies, chair of CUPE’s Young Workers Task Force, says “This is the first time a lot of young people had the chance to see a different face of our union.  A lot of people already knew about CUPE from the Vancouver strike so it was exciting to dispel some misconceptions about unions and to find common ground by talking about CUPE’s involvement in our communities.”

CUPE criticizes closed-door review of Canada Post

CUPE has expressed dismay over the federal government’s closed-door review of Canada Post. 

The union has submitted a brief on the post office, but believes the review should include public hearings. 

The review is considering eliminating Canada Post’s “exclusive privilege” to pick up and deliver regular mail.  This would mean deregulating the postal sector.  Deregulation is a form of privatization. 

For more information on the Canada Post review, visit www.cupw.ca.

Support Air Canada flight attendants

CUPE flight attendants are fighting for their jobs as Air Canada plans to slash 300 jobs in Vancouver, 187 in Halifax and 144 in Winnipeg. 

Flight attendant bases in Halifax and Winnipeg would be closed. 

These cuts are expected to have a huge impact on passengers, employees, their families and ultimately on their communities.

You can help by:

• Downloading, signing and spreading the petition to transport minister Lawrence Cannon, to block the layoffs until legislation can protect air service:  cupe.ca/acpetition

• Sending a letter to your MP asking her or him to contact Air Canada President and CEO Montie Brewer and Minister Cannon: cupe.ca/action/saveourservice/

Last chance to sign up for National Health and Safety Conference 

CUPE members from across Canada will be gathering in St. John’s, NL October 23-26 to share ideas, build solidarity, and plan strategies for success.

There have been lots of registrations so if you haven’t registered for the 10th National Health and Safety Conference, you should do so now! 

The deadline for registrations is Friday, September 19, 2008. 

Register online at cupe.ca/forms/hsconf.php or go to www.cupe.ca and click on the conference logo, ‘From Survival to Success’.

For more information please call CUPE Health and Safety at (613) 237-1590 or email health_safety@cupe.ca

Registration forms can be sent by fax to (613) 237-5508, or by mail to: 

CUPE Health and Safety
1375 St-Laurent Blvd.
Ottawa, ON 
K1G 0Z7

:te/cope 491