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Ottawa and Toronto – December 8, 2017 – UFCW Canada young workers from across the country recently united for Phase 2 of Canada’s leading youth labour program – the UFCW Canada Young-Workers Internship Program (YIP).
Phase 2 of YIP brings together graduates from the first phase of the program and provides them with an opportunity to apply the knowledge they acquired from Phase 1. The practical training in Phase 2 also helps to cultivate research, writing, and public speaking skills among YIP participants. This year’s program culminated in participants crafting UFCW Canada’s latest media and political advocacy campaign, entitled ‘SPEAK.’
As part of the program, the group of nine young workers engaged in political advocacy training and joined representatives from UFCW Canada Local Unions at political action meetings on Parliament Hill. There, they met with government ministers and Members of Parliament to discuss key issues affecting workers and their families, including pay equity, affordable childcare, pensions, and protecting Canada’s supply management system.
The Phase 2 participants then travelled to Toronto, where they continued their political advocacy work by meeting with several ministers and Members of Provincial Parliament at Queen’s Park. During the meetings, the YIP activists advocated for youth-focused mental health initiatives and an affordable, accessible child care system. The group also took to the airwaves to speak about their experiences at local radio stations throughout the Greater Toronto Area.
“This experience gave me the tools and resources needed to effectively advocate on behalf of my fellow young workers,” says UFCW Canada Local 832 member Cara Dahle. “I want to thank my fellow YIP members and our facilitators for encouraging me to stand up and speak out,” Sister Dahle adds.