Wishing all our current members, retirees, their families and the community we serve a very Happy Thanksgiving. Living in a rich and diverse community within Canada’s largest province gives us reason to be thankful.
We hope that your day is spent in the comfort of your family and friends; as we count all the reasons to be thankful, please remember those in our community, country, and around the globe who are in need of an assisting hand to help foster a better tomorrow.
CUPE 543 hosts annual Thanksgiving Giveback on Friday, October 9 –
600 families in need to receive Thanksgiving hampers
WINDSOR, ON – On Friday, October 9, City of Windsor ‘inside’ municipal and public service workers, represented by the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Local 543, will give back to the Windsor community that they serve by hosting a Thanksgiving Giveback event to help 600 local families celebrate Thanksgiving with hampers filled with all the ingredients to ensure a festive Thanksgiving dinner. This is the second annual Thanksgiving Giveback that CUPE 543 is mounting in conjunction with the Windsor Essex Food Bank Association (WEFBA).
“CUPE 543 is honoured and happy to give back to the Windsor community that we so proudly serve,” said Mark Vander Voort, president of CUPE 543. “We received tremendous positive feedback and satisfaction for helping our community in last year’s Thanksgiving Giveback and we will continue to help in any way we can to ensure families in need have an opportunity to have a full Thanksgiving dinner filled with all the trimmings.”
Thanksgiving hampers will be distributed at 10 food bank locations across the City of Windsor on Friday, October 9. CUPE 543 members will be on hand to give back at five locations including the Unemployed Help Centre, Drouillard Place, The Downtown Mission, The Salvation Army and Windsor Lifeline Outreach. Each hamper will contain a turkey (for families) or a chicken (for single recipients), along with carrots, potatoes, onions, stuffing, apples, cookies and candy for families with children.
CUPE 543 members and their families worked with community agencies and volunteered to pack hampers with 500 turkeys, 100 chickens, 2,750 pounds of potatoes, 3,000 pounds of carrots, hundreds of pounds of onions and 3,000 pounds of apples, along with 600 bags of cookies and 1,000 bags of candies for each of the 600 hampers. All the produce comes from local farmers and CUPE 543 thanks local suppliers for their donations and discounts for the giveaway, including Jay Williamson (owner of Freshco at McDougall and Tecumseh, Windsor) Col-Mac Orchards in Kingsville, Craig Matte and Todd Stevenson (managers from Real Canadian Superstore in Leamington), Pier-C Produce Inc., and Produce Wholesaler in Chatham.
“Our Thanksgiving Giveback would not be possible without the support from our members and our community partners that help make Windsor a great place to live and work,” continued Vander Voort. “Our members are proud to be part of this community and, this Thanksgiving, we want to give back to the community that we are so proud to serve.”
CUPE 543 represents over 1,500 public service workers in Windsor, including the City of Windsor (inside workers), Windsor-Essex County Health Unit, ABC Day Nursery, Windsor Occupational Health Information Service, Windsor Essex Community Housing Corporation, Prism Berlie and Great Beginnings Child Centered Co-operative, providing important public services to residents in Windsor.
For more information, please contact:
Mark Vander Voort, CUPE 543 President, 519-254-3543 (office), 519-903-5515 (cell)
Lisa Marion, CUPE National Representative, 519-966-9595
James Chai, CUPE Communications, 905-739-3999
JOIN CUPE Ontario in the fight to keep our assets in the public trust. Visit KEEP HYDRO PUBLIC to see how you can protect our assets, built and maintained by Ontarians for Ontarians!
Apr 21, 2015
Every year, around the world, unions mark the International Day of Mourning on April 28 to honour workers killed or injured on the job. It’s an important date for the labour movement: we remember those workers we’ve lost, and fight for better standards for today’s workers.
In 2014, six CUPE members lost their lives, and just four months into 2015 already five CUPE members have died on the job.
“It’s deeply troubling, the number of deaths we’ve seen recently,” said CUPE National President Paul Moist. “Our hearts go out to the families and the friends and colleagues of these workers.”
- Join CUPE 543 at this year’s event: Day of Mourning 2015.
In seven of the 11 incidents listed, working alone was a contributing hazard. Working alone means a worker does not receive immediate assistance if they’re incapacitated in some way, leaving the worker susceptible to graver injury. CUPE recently conducted a survey showing that 94 per cent of members who work alone face at least one other hazard during that period.
“Working alone is a serious problem in our workplaces. It’s a hazard that’s only getting worse with cutbacks and an aging workforce,” said Moist. “Employers need to acknowledge the risk our members face, and make efforts to reduce the hazard.”
- For tips on addressing the hazard, check out our working alone fact sheet.
Sadly, the health and safety challenges workers face often go beyond the workplace. The federal government and many provincial governments continue to undermine the health and safety of workers by weakening occupational health and safety laws. For instance, the federal government has modified the definition of danger for federally regulated workers. The definition now specifies that hazards must be “an imminent or serious threat” implying that workers are not entitled to protection from conditions that could cause them illness in the future.
CUPE opposes the change. If you believe you’re in danger at work, for any reason, you still have the right to refuse unsafe work.
It’s been more than 30 years since CUPE’s National Health and Safety Committee first proposed the idea for the Day of Mourning. Since then it has become an international event, marked by workers, governments and other organizations the world over. Unfortunately, it seems the need to raise awareness about workplace health and safety is as important as ever.
Next ACTION Step:
- CODE RED
March 12 is the four-month anniversary of the introduction of SAMS at Ontario Works and we want to make sure people know we’re still seeing RED over SAMS!
All CUPE members are asked to wear RED to work on Thursday, March 12, as a symbol of the urgency that SAMS is creating chaos in the workplace. Then e-mail, tweet and post photos of you and your colleagues sending out a CODE RED from your workplace – and don’t forget to tag #CUPEON and link to CUPE Ontario’s Facebook page.
Let’s make Ontario Works offices a sea of red on March 12. It will help to send a clear message that the situation remains critical and that immediate support is needed in the workplace.
- SAMS email address:
They have created a dedicated e-mail address for members who work with SAMS and would like to share their experiences: comments about what you are currently experiencing in the workplace, SAMS’ effects on clients; and “impact statements” about your SAMS experience.
Send your words and pictures to firstname.lastname@example.org; all correspondence will be treated with the utmost confidentiality.
3. Write to your MPP They have prepared a draft letter for members to send to their MPPs, alerting them to the ongoing problems at Ontario Works and the concerns that members have as citizens, workers and taxpayers. You will be welcome to use the sample text or use your own words – ones that describe the impact of SAMS