From November 1 - 6, Ashley Wilson (President) and Cameron Kroetsch (Past Executive Officer) attended the CUPE National Convention in Vancouver. The Convention takes place every two years and is an opportunity for Locals to direct the initiatives, goals, and work of CUPE National by voting on resolutions and amendments to the Constitution.
Delegates at the Convention voted on important issues, such as changing the language in the CUPE National Equality Statement to be inclusive of all genders, supporting the inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, and starting a campaign to increase funding for Post-Secondary Education.
There were two major disappointments at the CUPE National Convention: a failed vote on introducing additional seats for equity seeking groups on the National Executive Board and a failed vote to eliminate the waiting period for strike pay. Delegates at Convention voted and spoke out against adding seats to the National Executive Board for Women, Young Workers, Workers with Disabilities, and LGBTTI workers. We were also unsuccessful in eliminating the 10 day waiting period for strike pay, meaning that locals will continue to bear the burden of paying members during the first 10 days of strike, which can add up to hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Despite this, the Convention was an important learning opportunity and allowed us the chance to meet people from other locals, especially other academic locals, and talk about our concerns and issues, but also strategies and tactics. We were able to find support and connections that will help us in future rounds of bargaining and when we encounter issues on our campus and we are better prepared to offer the same support to other locals.