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CUPE is taking part this week in the Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ annual Sustainable Communities Conference.

The conference brings municipal leaders and policymakers together to discuss the latest developments in local sustainability.

CUPE staff will be participating in workshops and plenaries to learn about municipal environmental challenges and successes. We will share our union’s vision on:

  • greening public sector workplaces

  • stopping climate change and addressing impacts it is already having on municipalities

  • the importance of public services like transit, waste management and water treatment in building sustainable communities

This year, we’ll be highlighting our analysis of new federal wastewater regulations. The regulations will protect the environment through  much-needed improvements in standards, but don’t come with any federal funding to upgrade plants and train operators.

CUPE is warning this policy gap will put municipalities under even greater pressure to privatize. As many as 1,000 municipalities will need to upgrade their systems – many in small and rural communities with particularly limited financial resources.

Water workers are at the heart of well-functioning sewage treatment systems. CUPE is calling for dedicated federal funding to train and certify workers to deliver state-of-the-art treatment that protects our environment, as well as funding to upgrade wastewater infrastructure to provide 21st century treatment.

Learn more about CUPE’s vision for sustainable communities:

CUPE’s Green Guide

Fact sheet: Clean, safe public water services

Fact sheet: Clean, green cities