Our members expect a lot from us. They should because as their union we only exist because of them. That’s something we at UFCW Canada never lose sight of.
As Canada’s largest and most progressive private sector union, we understand members deserve more from us than just bargaining good collective agreements, handling their grievances and providing them workplace representation. Those certainly remain key responsibilities and we’re always measuring our efforts and looking for ways to improve servicing our members.
But it’s a new era so we’re also committed to providing our membership with opportunities beyond our traditional roles.
From job and life skills upgrading, to literacy and leadership training, to even online high school completion programs, our members now look to us to not only improve the quality of their workplace but the quality of their lives. We’re there to give our members a political voice, to support them in their community and charity efforts, and to be refuge and resource in times of personal crisis or hardship.
We’re also at a crossroads to protect the benefits the trade union movement won for all Canadians, benefits that young people in particular take for granted, yet will need most as they enter the workforce.
Governments and businesses are attempting to dismantle our standard of living, employment laws, and workplace protections through the erosion of the social safety net, contracting out of vital public services, and a concerted effort by some employers to turn the clock back to the days where workers had no rights, pension or future.
The trade union movement turned that around then and it can again because no challenge is insurmountable when people face it collectively. UFCW Canada only exists because of its members, stewards, activists and UFCW Canada Local Unions.
Together we will continue to make our country a good and just place for us, our families and our fellow Canadians.
National President, UFCW Canada