CHARLOTTETOWN: Recently the Canadian Union of Public Employees, PEI Division held its annual convention in Brudenell, Prince Edward Island where delegates established their priorities for the next year which included the up-coming federal election.
“The upcoming federal election was discussed at length during the two-day convention. The delegates identified a number of priorities during this campaign: adequate funding to health care, the Employment Insurance Program, a national childcare program, retirement security and the creation of good jobs. These are the issues our members want to talk about when the candidates show up on their front steps during the federal campaign,” said Lori MacKay, President of CUPE PEI.
“With a new government taking office the PEI Economy is on the minds of Islanders, we invited CUPE senior economist Toby Sanger who gave an overview of the PEI economy,” explained MacKay.
“We don’t know when the newly elected government will table its budget, but if it’s anything like the budgets of our neighbouring provinces, it will involve a lot of politically opportunistic and false alarmism about the province’s fiscal situation. Contrary to what some right wing groups are saying, Prince Edward Island has no structural deficit. In fact, PEI’s deficit is down to $35 million at last report, less than half what is was two years ago,” noted Toby Sanger, CUPE Senior Economist.
“The announcement of the new Provincial Cabinet during convention without a Minister Responsible for Labour created much discussion among the delegates. We have since learned the new minister of Labour is the Premier of the province and so we are looking forward to meeting with him in the near future,” explained MacKay
The annual visit to the CUPE PEI Convention from the Easter Seals ambassador is definitely a highlight for the delegates attending the convention each year. This year, Jacob McNeill entertained the delegates with both his speech and dancing. CUPE PEI members donated $8,500 for the Easter Seals this year “that brings our total donation in the last 2 years to Easter Seals to $20,000. We are very delighted in the generosity of our membership and our national Union’s support for Easter Seals on PEI,” said MacKay.
“It is clear our members are passionate about issues affecting their communities,” concluded MacKay who was reelected for a third term as president of CUPE PEI Division.