NextGen Newsletter - September 2021

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September 2021
 
 
 

In This Edition
 
  • Orange Shirt Day/National Day for Truth and Reconciliation
  • Webinar Wednesdays - IBEW Votes 2021
  • NextGen and Women's Committee Monthly Meetings
  • Happy Labour Day!
  • Federal Election September 20th
  • Remembering 9/11
  • Let's Build Canada
  • Women's Conference November 18-20th
 
Orange Shirt Day/National Day for Truth and Reconciliation
 
Started in 2013, Orange Shirt Day helps increase awareness of the effects of Residential Schools on Indigenous Communities in Canada.  The name comes from the story of Phyllis (Jack) Webstad.  On her first day of residential school at 6 years old, she had her orange shirt taken from her, a gift from her grandmother.  This shirt was a symbol for a much bigger system at play.  Indigenous children were taken from their families and were stripped of the culture that was theirs.

Orange Shirt Day helps to continue the conversation and efforts around reconciliation.  Those who have suffered tell their stories and continue to heal.  For the rest of us it's about supporting our Indigenous brothers and sisters that have been affected and to remind ourselves that Every Child Matters.

In 2017, Member of Parliament, Georgina Jolibois submitted private member's bill C-361 calling for a national holiday.  The bill passed through the House of Commons on March 21, 2019 but never made it through the Senate before the next election was called.

On September 29, 2020, Canada's Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault tabled bill C-5 proposing that Orange Shirt Day become a national statutory holiday, similar to the previous bill by Georgina Jolibois. The new holiday would be officially named the "National Day for Truth and Reconciliation".  On May 28, 2021, the day after 215 children's bodies were discovered in an unmarked cemetery on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School, all parties in the House of Commons agreed to fast-track the bill and it passed in the House of Commons by unanimous consent. The bill passed the Senate unanimously six days later and received royal assent on June 3, 2021.

This September 30th, we ask that you take some time to learn about the history of residential schools and work towards ensuring something like this never happens again. A great place to start is reading the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada's 94 Calls to Action.

In solidarity,

Cheryl Paron
International Representative

[Sources: Wikipedia and Parliament of Canada]

 
News and Events
 

Webinar Wednesdays!

Thank you to all who participated in our latest webinar, "Mental Health" held August 25th.  We're excited to announce our next new webinar titled "IBEW Votes 2021".  To prepare for the upcoming federal election on September 20th, join this webinar to learn how the Canadian political system works and how you as an IBEW member and Canadian citizen can be engaged in the process.  We will cover key election topics and political party policies along with how to ensure you’re registered to vote.

Once again, our next webinar will be offered twice to reach as many of our members as possible.  To register for either day, please use the links below.

IBEW Votes 2021

  • Eastern Canada – Wednesday, September 8, 2021 at 7pm EDT - Register here
  • Western Canada – Wednesday, September 15, 2021 at 6pm PDT - Register here

For those new to Webinar Wednesdays, we will be covering a variety of subjects on the IBEW and labour movement.  Webinars will take place via zoom and will run for 1 hour.  Details on the subjects covered and how to register will be communicated to your local union and can be found on our social media accounts and website.  This is a great opportunity to stay connected to your union and become a more informed member.  Hope to see you there!

Looking to revisit our past webinars?  Check out the recordings on the IBEW Canada YouTube page.

Please note that this webinar is only open to IBEW members and retirees.

 
NextGen and Women's Committee Monthly Meetings

Thank you to all of the committees who joined the August calls.  These calls serve as a way to stay connected with committees across the country.  They help us share ideas, solve problems, build solidarity and provide general support to each other.  All local unions are welcome to participate, however we ask that you limit your participation to 3 people from your local union.  If you're interested, please email International Representative, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Calls for September are as follows:

  • NextGen Committees - Tuesday, September 14th 7:30pm EDT (2nd Tuesday of the month)
  • Women's Committees - Tuesday, September 21st 7:00-8:00pm EDT (3rd Tuesday of the month)
Zoom meeting information will be sent out to all interested participants by email.
 
In 1894 under Prime Minister John Thompson, Labour Day officially became a statutory holiday.  Celebrated on the first Monday in September, Labour Day recognizes the advancements that have been made by the labour movement.  Originating in the 1800s, Labour Day started as a fight for the 9-hour work day when the Toronto Typographical Union went on strike in 1872.  10,000 people marched in solidarity to demand better working conditions.  This movement continued to spread and developed into the National holiday that we have today.

Typically we would spend Labour Day at various parades or events, coming together in solidarity with other unions and labour groups to show support for the labour movement and remind the public that unions still have a very important role in maintaining and achieving rights for working people.  However once again, due to COVID-19, Labour Day will be celebrated differently.  Innovative ceremonies such as caravans have been organized to show our solidarity and continue celebrating the struggles and achievements of the labour movement.

For many, the Labour Day weekend marks the end of summer but as the labour movement we know that it represents so much more.  As we continue to trek on through this global pandemic we will continue to fight for better working conditions and improved safety, particularly for our front line workers - many of whom are IBEW members.

Thank you for everything that you do for the IBEW, the labour movement and this great nation!

 

Federal Election September 20th

The federal election is rapidly approaching.  If you have not received your Voter Information Card and/or you're not registered to vote, you can still vote.  Consult Elections Canada's Website for information on polling station locations and ID required to vote.  

We want to remind our members that this is our opportunity to elect a labour friendly government.  Let us not forget about the anti-union legislation (Bill C-377 and Bill C-525) that was passed by the Harper Conservative Government, of which current Conservative leader Erin O'Toole was a part of.  Use your voice and your vote to ensure that we keep the Conservatives out of power and elect a government led by a Prime Minister who will protect our rights as unionized workers.  We also want to encourage our members, especially our NextGen committees to get out and support labour friendly candidates in your area.  If your local has a Political Action Committee (PAC), partner with them. 

There are many options for casting your ballot which include early voting and voting by mail.  If you plan to vote by mail you must request your ballot no later than September 14th.

 
Remembering 9/11

It has been 20 years since the terrible events of September 11th.  As Canadians, we empathized with our American brother and sisters.  We took stranded passengers into our homes and treated them as family.  As People, we came together and supported one another to show that the strength of humanity was a much greater force than that of terrorism.  And as IBEW members, we mourned the loss of 21 of our own who lost their life working in the towers that day.  17 members of New York City Local 3 and 4 from Local 1212 died in the tragic events.  With each passing year we ensure that their names will not be forgotten.  We ensure that they will not be forgotten.
Missing from the list is Anthony Segarra of Local 3.  He died November 28, 2001 from injuries sustained from the attack.
 

Let’s Build Canada is a coalition of building trade and construction unions representing workers from thousands of communities, large and small, in every province and territory.  Our members are the International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers; International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW); International Union of Painters and Allied Trades (IUPAT); Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers (SMART); International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron Workers; United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipefitting Industry of the United States and Canada (UA); and Canada’s Building Trades Unions (CBTU).

For decades, the unionized building trades have led the way in building Canada’s middle class. We’ve fought for good jobs – jobs with wages you can support a family on (and maybe take a vacation), benefits that protect you in the present and for retirement, and time off for you and your loved ones to pursue your own lives.

We're back for the 2021 election campaigning for progressive policies and good jobs. Canada is facing incredible challenges. Climate change, COVID-19 and a changing global economy all require bold, progressive solutions. To build a stronger Canada, we need strong leaders who will make the right decisions for the prosperity of all Canadians.  Our platform includes:

  • Making it easier for working Canadians to get to the good jobs wherever they are across the country
  • Building the good jobs of tomorrow by ensuring our oil and gas workers and their families have a fair and just transition to the low-carbon economy
  • Building strong training programs that will prepare Canadian workers to prosper in the future
In the 2019 election, 18 ridings were decided by less than 1,000 votes. Nine ridings were decided by less than 500 votes. And two were decided by just over 150 votes. Don’t let everyone else decide your future.  Your vote is your voice. In this election, use the power of your vote… and vote for good jobs for 2021 and beyond.

To learn more about Let's Build Canada visit our website or read the latest press release.  You can also subscribe for email and text message updates.  Finally, we ask that you take the Good Jobs Survey and let us know what a good job means to you.

 

Registration is now open for the IBEW Canadian Women's Conference being held November 18-20 at the Sheraton Parkway Toronto North Hotel and Suites in Richmond Hill, ON.  The deadline to register for both the conference and to book your hotel at the preferred nightly rate of $139 plus tax is October 25, 2021.

The theme of the conference is "Diversity. Equity. Unity".  The agenda will include speakers and workshops designed to inspire and build strong IBEW leaders.  New this year we will offer programming specifically for allies.  The plenary sessions will be open to all attendees but we will offer a specific track of workshops designed to engage allies in the Diversity and Inclusion conversation.  We will explore issues currently faced by our female members and provide tools and strategies for becoming better allies.  We encourage all IBEW members in leadership positions who do not identity as women to participate in the allies portion of the conference.

As for the regular conference portion, we ask that you support this conference by sending women to participate.  This conference is the greatest opportunity our IBEW women have to learn, network and build solidarity with the other sisters across the country.  We ask that if funds are limited you prioritize sending women to the conference over allies.

The province of Ontario is introducing a vaccine certificate program which will go into effect September 22nd.  In order to access certain businesses and settings which include conferences, you will need to be fully vaccinated and provide proof of vaccination along with photo ID.  People are considered fully vaccinated 14 days after receiving the full series of a COVID 19 vaccine or combination of COVID-19 vaccines approved by World Health Organization (e.g., two doses of a two-dose vaccine series, or one dose of a single-dose vaccine series).  The government of Ontario is working on an enhanced vaccine certificate, as well as a verification app to allow businesses to read the QR code, which will be available beginning October 22.  Participants will also be required to abide by all public health measures which may include hand sanitizing, mask wearing and physical distancing.  We are keeping a close eye on the COVID-19 situation in Ontario and will work diligently with the hotel to provide a safe experience for all participants.

If you are interested in attending, please speak to your local union.  We look forward to seeing all of you in person!

 
Do you have suggestions or material for the newsletter?  Send your content and ideas to Cheryl Paron (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).
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