CUPE-Quebec 31st biennial convention begins this week. From Tuesday, May 14 to Friday, May 17, more than 700 convention-goers will come from the four corners of the province to assemble at the convention centre in Quebec City.
The theme of this year’s convention is “Taking our place.” “CUPE-Quebec must take its rightful place in public life, the workplace and at the bargaining table. Otherwise, we are turning our backs on democratic life and all the changes that are happening. It’s giving up when we are faced with a world undergoing massive transformation,” said Denis Bolduc, the President of CUPE-Quebec.
Michèle Audette, Commissioner of the Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Canada, will deliver the opening remarks on Tuesday morning. Other keynote speakers include Daniel Boyer, the President of the FTQ, CUPE National Officers Mark Hancock and Charles Fleury, and Alexandre Boulerice, Deputy Leader of the NDP.
This convention coincides with the 40th anniversary of the CUPE-Quebec Women’s Committee. A large number of women’s rights activists are expected to participate. Carole Neill, Vice-President of the CUPE-Quebec university sector, as well as Louise Harel and Manuelle Oudar, will speak about the negotiations that lead up to the adoption of Quebec’s Pay Equity Act.
Invited experts will speak about the key challenges facing labour today, including Nellie Brière, a consultant in digital communications and social media, strategist Karl Bélanger will discuss the role of unions in the public discourse, and Jocelyn Maclure will make a presentation on the impact of artificial intelligence in the job market.
The environment will also be a focus. Greenpeace’s Patrick Bonin will address the environmental crisis, Alice-Anne Simard of Eau Secours will speak about water privatization, and Francis L’Heureux of the FTQ Solidarity Fund, will tackle just transition.