These past two years have been like none other. As CUPE members, we have shown tremendous strength, resilience, and commitment to community throughout the pandemic. We were the frontline workers facing the fear of an unknown virus. We showed up when others were told to stay home. We stayed home when we could, to keep others safe. We sacrificed. And while we were all in the same storm, we were on different boats. The pandemic deepened our inequality and more severely impacted women, Indigenous and racialized workers, newcomers, young workers, and those living on low incomes. At the same time, we have seen the devastating impact of the climate crisis threatening our lives and the planet.
The pandemic, so far, has taught us many lessons: privatization kills; public services are vital, frontline workers are heroes, technology can keep us connected in new ways, and economies are dependent not on CEOs and business people, but on those who are paid the least but kept our communities safe. The climate crisis has shown the importance of doing everything we can to reverse global warming and to invest in public infrastructure needed to withstand the growing impact of the climate emergency on our communities.
We now need to take the lessons we have learned and re-build the Canada we want. We can ensure a worker-centered recovery for women, Indigenous, Black and racialized people, the differently abled, LQBTQ2+, young people, people with low-income, rural dwellers, and all workers. We need to invest in public services and public social infrastructure, ensure our health care system is strong and sustainable, commit to mentally healthy workplaces, build universal child care programs, and bring long-term care back into the public sector. And we must do all of this in a greener and more sustainable way. We want a recovery that puts the priorities of the working class first.
Strategic Directions defines the core work of our union, from our Local Unions, through our councils and divisions, to the National Executive Board. It builds on and complements the policy and direction adopted at each of our previous National Conventions.