Twenty-one GSU delegates joined 340 delegates from other unions as they attended the 66th convention of the Saskatchewan Federation of Labour held in Regina from October 26 to 28.
Convention activities began on the evening of Oct. 25 with delegate registration and the KAIROS Blanket Exercise which is designed to be an interactive teaching tool exploring the historic and contemporary relationship between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples in the land we now call Canada. On Oct. 26 the formal convention agenda kicked off with the call to order, greetings from various dignitaries, the president’s address and secretary-treasurer’s report. The convention agenda also included presentations focusing on contemporary issues and challenges confronting working people in Canada.
Central to the convention was the debate on a variety of policy resolutions focused on improving the circumstances of working people across the province. Delegates also took time to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Saskatchewan’s Occupational Health and Safety Act, including the pioneering leadership of Bob Sass.
GSU general secretary Hugh Wagner and Jackie Lazar (COPE 397) were awarded the Larry Hubich Lifetime of Service Award for their contributions to the labour movement and tireless advocacy for working people.
The theme of the convention was, “Speaking Up” for labour rights and better working conditions for workers in all sectors. Delegates put the theme in action by speaking up at a demonstration in support of the labour movement’s agenda which was held at the Saskatchewan Legislature on Oct. 27.
Lori Johb (SEIU West) was elected to her third term as SFL president and Kent Peterson (CUPE Saskatchewan) was elected to his second term as secretary treasurer. Delegates also voted overwhelmingly to change the SFL constitution to provide for biennial as opposed to annual conventions going forward.