member's voice may 2011

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Member's Voice May 2011


  • The newsletter of CUPE Local 15, Vancouver Municipal Education and Community Workers

    Return undeliverable Canadian addresses to:CUPE Local 15545 W. 10th Ave.Vancouver, BCV5Z 1K9

    General Membership MeetingMAY

    Date & Time: Wednesday, May 25, 2011 5:30 pmLocation: Italian Cultural Centre

    3075 Slocan St. Vancouver, Room 5Under Discussion: Notice of Motion - CUPE 15 Equality Statement

    Bargaining updates from Langara College, Emily Carr University &Vancouver School Board

    Vancouver School Board budget & calendar CUPE BC Committees - seeking names of interested members Executive Board By-election - Member at Large Health Sector

    (HSPBA)General Meetings provide all members with an opportunity to participate in decisions that affect the union. (Childcare assistance and Interpretation available upon request.)


    The MembersvoiceMAY 2011

    VANCOUVERCUPE BCs 48th annual convention drew to a close today, with more than 500 delegates re-electing President Barry ONeill for a seventh term and Secretary-Treasurer Mark Hancock for a fourth term. In addition, delegates re-elected General Vice-Presidents Debbie Taylor, Paul Faoro, Cindy McQueen and Trevor Davies. Delegates also elected six Regional Vice-Presidents and alternates, two Diversity Vice-Presidents and alternates, and two Trustees.

    The convention also adopted a new two-year action plan that will see CUPE BC engage its members in political and community action to defeat the BC Liberal government and elect the BC NDP. Throughout the four-day meeting delegates heard from guest speakers like CUPE

    National President Paul Moist and Secretary-Treasurer Claude Gnreux, author Linda McQuaig, interim NDP Official Opposition Leader Dawn Black and South African labour leader Gati Malete.

    The theme of the convention was Community ActionIt Works!

    Prior to Blacks speech, ONeill invited former NDP Leader Carole James to the stage to receive thanks and appreciation from CUPE BC for her seven years of service to the party. Delegates gave James two standing ovations during the presentation.

    United Steelworkers of Americas Steve Hunt joined ONeill to pay tribute to former BC

    Federation of Labour Secretary-Treasurer Angela Schira, who retired last year. ONeill thanked Schira for her more than 25 years of dedication and service to the labour movement, and said her role as mentor to hundreds of women activists continues to be an inspiration to all British Columbians.

    Delegates adopted a wide variety of resolutions, committing CUPE BC to actions such as advocating for a comprehensive public childcare system for B.C. and Canada, and demanding the BC Liberal government restore appropriate levels of funding to education.

    Next years CUPE BC convention will be held in Victoria.

    CUPE BC Convention sets course for 2011-2012ONeill, Hancock and GVPs re-elected by acclamation

    CUPE BC Executive elected by 48th Annual Convention

    President: Barry ONeillSecretary-Treasurer: Mark Hancock

    General Vice-Presidents (4): Trevor Davies, Paul Faoro, Cindy McQueen, Debbie Taylor

    Diversity Vice-President, Workers of Colour: Dal Benning, Michele Alexander (alternate)

    Diversity Vice-President, Aboriginal: Dale Whitford, Edie Charlie (alternate)

    Regional Vice-President, Okanagan: John Hall, Brent Soroka (alternate)

    Regional Vice-President, Vancouver Island (2): Doug Sprenger, Keith Todd, Alison Pringle (alternate)

    Regional Vice-President, Kootenays: Susan BlairBrian Harvey (alternate)

    Regional Vice-President, Fraser Valley: Darlene Smith, Paul Albrecht (alternate)

    Regional Vice-President, North: Cathy Whalen, Brad Kent (alternate)Regional Vice-President, Metro (3):

    Ian Norton, Colin Pawson, Michael Lanier,Ken Davidson (alternate)

    Trustees (3): Frank Lee (3 year term)Laurie Whyte (2 year term)

  • The MembersvoiceMAY 20112

    WWW.CUPE15.ORG CUPE Local 15, Vancouver Municipal Education and Community Workers

    I would like to thank the membership of CUPE 15 for re-electing me as President for another term. I am truly humbled by all of the support and trust I have received. Once again I pledge that I will continue to focus all of my energy

    towards working for the betterment of our membership and union. Last month at the CUPE British Columbia Convention I was also re-elected as a General Vice President of CUPE BC which was heartwarming to say the least. I am truly proud to be a CUPE member and I look forward to

    the coming weeks, months, and years in my leadership roles.

    Stepping back to our locals Executive Board elections I would like to congratulate the members who were elected to our Executive Board and thank everyone who allowed their name to stand in the election. I would also like to acknowledge everyone who assisted with running the election. It couldnt have happened without your help - thank you. Our Executive Board elections really put meaning to the words CUPE is a democratic union that are

    printed in the preamble of our unions national constitution.

    One of the real positives for me from our election, aside from being re-elected, was getting out to some of the worksites and talking to members about our union. Getting

    constructive feedback on the past two years and suggestions for moving forward was great. As well, it was helpful to hear concerns and important issues members have in their workplaces. This has certainly been a good reminder for me to try to get out to worksites more often which I will definitely put time towards. I also plan to discuss with our incoming Executive Board the idea of setting up regular contract group meetings at lunch time or after work to check in with members.

    With our union having just under 6,000 members working for 17 employers at over 150 worksites in Vancouver, Burnaby, Richmond, Delta, and North Vancouver, I plan to continue expanding the use of social media and the internet to provide information to our membership. We continue to receive positive feedback on our use to date and encourage members to ensure our union office has your current home email address so we can sign you up for our cupe15online service. For Facebook users please join our CUPE 15 group for whats current, and for Twitter users you can follow me for the latest news @paulfaoro.

    During the last two years we faced one of the worst economic recession that we have ever seen which challenged our union to fullest degree. Our employers and communities were hit hard. I am proud of the work CUPE 15 did getting our membership through these difficult times. Without the dedicated women and men who serve on our Executive Board and as shop stewards, committees members, and union staff we couldnt have done it. Protecting jobs was always at the forefront of our minds and operating in a compassionate, strategic, and professional way.

    Looking forward CUPE 15 will continue to operate in a compassionate, strategic, and professional manner as I know that is what our membership expects and are entitled to from their union.

    Thanks for the Support by Paul Faoro, President

    Update from your Executive

    by Leanne Toderian, Secretary Treasurer

    As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others. Bill Gates

    April is always a busy month around the union. We sent 18 delegates to the CUPE British Columbia Convention which was held in Vancouver at the Hyatt Regency Hotel from April 13-16. Convention highlights can be found on the CUPE BC website at

    Among other important business the executive board of CUPE BC was re-elected and I am happy to report that our president, Paul Faoro, was re-elected as a General Vice President of CUPE BC. Having input and voice at this level is a privilege that can only help this local serve its members well, not to mention the contacts and solidarity

    built with other locals across this province. Congratulations Paul.

    The union office was also taken over by our auditors this past month or so and those who attended the AGM heard the report of the auditing firm of Fairhall and Associates on the health and well being of our finances. I am pleased to report his findings were very positive. He praised our practices, goal setting, and management of the locals finances. While this is a collaborative effort with the Executive Board, I would like to thank our Trustees Joseph Lau, Michele Alexander, and Arthur Lum, and staff Mark Gloumeau for their hard work and dedication to this process. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Arthur who decided not to run for another term of Trustee and will take a break from this work. Thanks Arthur.

    Other elections of course were our own at Local 15; congratulations to those elected. I look forward to working with those returning for another term and the new members who will bring a fresh outlook to our proceedings. Walter Cronkite once said, We are not educated well enough to perform the necessary act of intelligently selecting our leaders. I can say confidently he is wrong for a number of reasons.

    I hear from the candidates there was some great dialogue with the membership about our goals and commitments in the workplace and the local as a whole. Members came out in record numbers to vote largely due to the four advance polling stations. We rolled out a new draft policy on elections and through this process we have identified new goals that the Executive Board will task on your behalf.

    When members question and seek answers it is an opportunity to take a look at how we do business and re-examine our goals so that we can keep evolving to meet the needs of the membership. Healthy debate in a safe place where we can work through issues and concern