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Alberta Division Convention

Calgary, Alberta – Paul Moist, national president of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), will speak to the CUPE Alberta Division Convention tomorrow on March 13, 2008. Moist will congratulate the Alberta Division for its recent report, Doing the Math: Why P3s for Alberta Schools Don’t Add Up. The report cautions Alberta residents about the true cost of building and maintaining public schools with private financing.

Moist, commenting on recent elections in Alberta says, “Alberta’s recent elections and the growing poverty in this region of our country, despite the blatant wealth, are indicators that the grass roots is hurting in Alberta. That is what low election turnouts tell us.”

Moist will remind CUPE delegates that their national union will work side-by-side with them to beat back the drums of privatization in all its forms — including P3s, service reductions, contracting out and legislative attempts to destroy public services.

Moist will encourage CUPE members to “join forces with coalition partners — social, economic and political — to stop the growth in private sector takeovers of public services like schools.”

Paul Moist will take the occasion to introduce two of the 252 employees of the Journal de Québec who have been locked-out for nearly a year, by Quebecor/Sun Media Corporation.

“What has been happening to these media workers in Quebec is a sign of the absolute, unchecked arrogance of certain corporate citizens in our country,” says Moist.

“They are practicing what is being termed “economic terrorism” on their own organizations and on Canadian workers.

And in this case, it is a double whammy because there has been a virtual media blackout outside Quebec on this story. Yet, every part of our country is suffering from the impact of fewer and fewer media voices.”

The President of Canada’s largest union (570,000 members) will also show a short video highlighting the potential of CUPE members collective strength,”… to beat back privatization and to win the battle for adequate funding, to ensure public delivery of public services, to re-build crumbling infrastructure and to ensure that health, education and infrastructure maintenance remain in public hands.”

Moist will be bringing his concerns about privatization, under-funding and the impact of media convergence to CUPE division conventions and the Canadian Labour Congress convention until the end of May 2008.

More about CUPE’s work to promote public services: cupe.ca/privatization.

More about the Journal de Québec lockout, freedom of the press in Canada: cupe.ca/journaldequebec.


For information or interviews contact Audra Williams, Alberta Communications Representative, 780-504-2837 (cell) or Louise Leclair, Director, CUPE Communications, 613-314-7199 (cell)