The National Executive Board observed a minute of silence to reflect upon the deaths of Brother Sylvain Ferland of CUPE Local 1983 who was killed on the job on August 14; Sister Denise Joudrey of CUPE Local 4970, a victim of domestic violence, who was murdered on June 30; Brother Duncan Haslam, retired Ontario Assistant Regional Director, died July 5; and Sister Angela Bromley, a retiree from the national office, died on September 19.
NEB Resolution – Opposing the Attack on Ontario Public Sector Workers
Board members voted unanimously to oppose the government of Ontario in its attack on all broader public sector workers. The government of Ontario has brought forward two pieces of legislation this fall session. The first, Bill 115, strips education workers of their collective bargaining rights. The second applies to all broader public sector workers. These legislative attacks include repealing existing collective agreements and arbitrated awards to impose new ones that meet the government’s austerity goals if existing agreements are not re-negotiated. The NEB pledged their support to Ontario CUPE members and the Ontario Division as they take action against these assaults and stand up for their right to collective bargaining and the enforcement of freely negotiated agreements and arbitrated awards. For more details and a copy of the resolution, go to http://cupe.ca/wages/opposes-ontarios-attack-workers.
Economy at Work
The Board received a presentation from CUPE’s senior economist, Toby Sanger, on his latest quarterly economic report, “Economy at Work”. This new publication will replace the “Economic Climate for Bargaining”, following the strategic direction passed by the last national convention to increase the economic literacy of CUPE members. “Economy at Work” is an accessible and thought-provoking magazine-style report. The fall 2012 issue includes articles on the failure of austerity policies, the threat of recession from a potential housing bust, and analysis on the billions currently being saved by governments due to low interest rates. The publication also includes quick facts on jobs, economic growth, and wages. The new publication is being paired with regular web postings on a range of economic issues to provide workers and their representatives with accessible information and analysis to understand relevant economic developments, to assist in bargaining, and to advocate for better living standards. This material is available online at http://cupe.ca/economyatwork.
The national secretary-treasurer updated the NEB on budget preparations. Meetings are taking place with all regions and departments in the next few weeks. Prudent financial management will help prepare us for the present and future attacks on our members. The National Executive Board approved twenty-one cost-share campaign requests, totaling $784,529.61. This brings the total so far for 2012 to $2,964,691.61. Eight requests for legal and arbitration support were approved, totaling $474,665.75.
The National Executive Board ratified the appointments of Heather Fraser, Director of Communications, and Rhonda Henry, Head Accountant. The National Executive Committee ratified the appointment of Rhonda Spence, Assistant Regional Director, British Columbia.