National President Visits PBC Local 60146

On November 30, RVP, Carol Osborne and Local President, Ora Jean welcomed the National President David Neufeld to the Parole Board of Canada (Local 60416 in Moncton, NB) for the Local’s Annual General Membership Meeting. The first item on the agenda was to hold the local elections. Sister Jean, having been the Local President for more than 15 years, did not reoffer. Her strong union activism was acknowledged and thanked on behalf of the USJE and the membership. Sister Jean will be missed. The Local now has a new Executive with Brother Marc Belanger elected as Local President, Sister Tammy Leger elected as the Secretary/Treasurer and Sister Cindy Breau elected as a Shop Steward. There were 2 other members nominated as Shop Stewards who were not in attendance. Their appointments were to be confirmed after the meeting.

National President, David Neufeld spoke about the USJE National Convention which took place last July in Whistler. He thanked Sister Jean for her contribution, as she assisted with some bilingual announcements.

National President Neufeld also shared about the National Strike fund and the levy that is being applied of $5.00/member/month. Members raised concerns with regards to the Strike. RVP Osborne and President Neufeld thanked the members, both on the picket line and those who were deemed essential. They explained the important role all members play when we are on Strike.

The National President spoke about the Presumptive Injury Campaign and Bill C-357 and the impacts this Private Member’s Bill could have on our membership. The bill was tabled in the House of Commons last September by NDP MP Peter Julian and contains USJE’s revisions to the Government Employees Compensation Act that would guarantee coverage for presumptive injuries. President Neufeld also spoke of the grievance backlog and the plan to address this with the hiring of additional staff at USJE head office. He spoke about membership engagement and how USJE is a trailblazer in the union with the Convention passing a resolution for a Triennial Equity Conference.

There were questions regarding the next round of Collective Bargaining and a Public Safety Allowance. RVP Osborne explained that it is important when the call out is sent that members provide suggestions for demands. The process requires the demands to come directly from the membership. It is hoped that the Public Safety Allowance, which would encompass all Departments the USJE represents, will be a priority.

National President Neufeld was pleased to see the level of engagement in the meeting and to see the sense of solidarity shared among the members.