'A key goal of our union in the coming years will be to reach out and engage our members in this campaign.' - James Clancy.
Vancouver (16 June 2010) – Delegates from across Canada are gathering in Vancouver this week for the triennial constitutional convention of the 340,000-member National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE).
The three-day gathering officially begins Friday and ends at the conclusion of business on Sunday.
Delegates will take stock of NUPGE’s activities and achievements since the union’s last convention in June 2007 and address challenges facing the union as it looks ahead to the coming years.
The overarching theme of the 2010 convention is: All Together Now.
One of the highlights of the opening session will be a key-note adddress by NUPGE National President James Clancy. He will speak about issues facing the union and public services in the wake of the economic crisis that hit Canada and the world in September 2008.
It’s expected that Clancy will call on delegates to support a comprehensive, long-term campaign for the union that will focus on three key elements:
- Promoting the value of public services.
- Defending public employees.
- Fighting for tax fairness.
"Building a fair and sustainable economy and society depends on these three elements,” says Clancy.
“A key goal of our union in the coming years will be to reach out and engage our members in this campaign," he says.
“I really appreciate the time being taken by all of our delegates to attend the convention and participate in the various debates and events. The convention is an imporant opportunity for our members to help set the direction of the union in the coming months and years."
Several guest speakers are scheduled. They include:
- John Lanchester – author of the best-selling book I.O.U.: Why Everyone Owes Everyone and No One Can Pay.
- Raj Patel – award-winning writer, activist and academic. His latest book is called The Value of Nothing.
- Mary Walsh – accomplished actress, political satirist and social activist, known throughout Canada for her memorable characters on the popular television show This Hour Has 22 Minutes.
- Yessika Hoyos Morales – a Colombian lawyer, human rights activist and outspoken critic of the Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement.
Delegates will also debate a wide range of resolutions to make the union stronger and address important public policy issues. They will cover the following areas:
- Public health care.
- Post-secondary education.
- Community-based social service.
- Quality of Women’s Lives.
- The Harper government’s attack on civil society orgnaizations.
- Labour Rights are Human Rights.
- Pensions and retirement security.
- Climate change and the environment.
- International solidarity – Violence against trade union leaders in Colombia.
- Canada’s reputation in the world.
- International trade and corporate globalization.
The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 340,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. NUPGE
• National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE)