On April 19th Manitobans will vote in the provincial election to determine who will lead our province for the next four years. Elections are important for all citizens, as CUPE members, 25,000 strong, delivering needed public services throughout Manitoba.
Who governs our province matters a great deal.
The NDP has governed our province since October 1999, and many CUPE members, have not worked under any other government and don’t know the struggles that many CUPE members faced in the 1990’s when our right to free collective bargaining was taken away by legislation and all citizens lost when our former crown corporation, the Manitoba Telephone System was privatized.
The NDP record over the past 16 years has not been perfect. Like others we in Manitoba have felt the effects of the 2008 global recession and we have had some tough rounds of bargaining and other important issues to deal with.
It is inevitable that no matter who is in office, we as public employees will face challenges, and our job is to speak up and to lobby and advocate hard on behalf of the members we serve. Unlike many of our sisters and brothers across Canada, we have had a decent relationship with the NDP government. In other provinces CUPE members have faced legislation attacking our right to free collective bargaining.
We have not faced provincial privatization nor has Manitoba gone down the path of so-called Public-Private-Partnerships. At each of our CUPE Manitoba conventions since spring 2000 we have had the Premier in attendance to meet and speak to us. There are CUPE regions in Canada where they have never had a Premier speak to them and they have no positive things to report on in terms of their relations with their provincial government.
The purpose of this communication is to share information with you and to ask that you share the attached bulletin with your members. We all benefit when members exercise their right to vote and when they make an informed decision.
Thank you for your leadership and your activism, it makes a difference. On April 19th we have a choice to make, and delegates to our 2015 Division Convention decided that we want to continue to build our province with quality public services by re-electing the NDP.
I would be pleased to attend your local’s membership meeting or to meet with you directly to discuss this matter. Remember, together we can make a difference on April 19th.
President, CUPE Manitoba