Convention 2012: News

Convention 2012: News


One amendment, one resolution passed Saturday afternoon

April 21 2012 2:45 p.m.

The 2012 Convention resumed Saturday afternoon with debate continuing on a constitutional amendment that originally was put on the floor Thursday morning.

Delegates debated and passed an amendment that gives the Aboriginal Circle full Committee status. An emergency resolution was also passed supporting members of Local 330, Simcoe County School Board, in their struggle to continue using protective equipment in dealing with special needs students.

Quorum was lost at 2:15, and Convention 2012 was closed.

Saturday Morning – budget finally passed

April 21 2012 12:00 p.m.

For a third straight day, debate on the OPSEU budget continued at the 2012 Convention.

Delegates continued to move motions cutting budget lines to reduce the overall budget deficit. The Editors’ Weekend was eliminated for 2012, and the Provincial Women’s Committee, Provincial Human Rights Committee and the Provincial Young Workers Committee’s budgets were capped at $50,000 each. The Education budget was also reduced by 10 per cent.

Interest and dividends from the Strike Fund were directed into the General Fund for this year. All other OPSEU committees had their budgets reduced by 10 per cent; this did not include caucuses.

As a result of the amendments, the budget moved from a deficit to showing a small surplus. Delegates passed the budget just prior to lunch.

Budget talks continue Friday afternoon

April 20, 2012 5:00 p.m.

Debate on the OPSEU budget continued Friday afternoon at the 2012 Convention.

Prior to the restart of the budget debate, delegates unanimously passed a motion approving OPSEU’s Action Plan to Fight for Quality Public Services and Tax Fairness. The Stanley Knowles Award was also presented to Ed Broadbent. Andrea Horwath, leader of the Ontario NDP, accepted the award on behalf of Broadbent.

Delegates continued to debate the budget, passing motions to reduce the $3 million deficit. Local rebates have been reduced by 15 per cent for the next four rebates, and Executive Board Members are now limited to only being off work for 50 per cent of their total work hours.

Convention was disrupted when most of the members from Regions 4 and 7 walked off the Convention floor during the budget debate. However, quorum was maintained and the debate continued.

A proposal to eliminate the Local President’s time off fund was defeated.

Convention closed at 5 p.m. without finishing the budget. Debate will continue Saturday.

Budget debate dominates Friday morning

April 20, 2012 12:00 p.m.

Debate on the OPSEU budget dominated Friday morning of the 2012 Convention.

Friday morning began with a presentation on “The Way Forward,” an Action Plan for OPSEU to fight for quality public services and tax fairness. Judy Wasylycia-Leis, Chair of the Public Services Foundation of Canada, also gave a report on her Commission’s hearings that were held over the past few months.

For the remainder of Friday morning, delegates debated the OPSEU budget. A motion to reconsider the dues levy was defeated, as was a motion to refer the budget back to the Executive Board. The current budget before the delegates has a deficit of nearly $3 million.

Debate on the budget continues after lunch.

Temporary dues levy defeated

April 19, 2012  4:00 p.m.

Delegates at the 2012 OPSEU Annual Convention have defeated a proposed temporary dues levy.

After a spirited debate that lasted nearly two hours, the proposal did not achieve the two-thirds majority needed to pass.

Debate on the budget has been delayed while the budget is amended to reflect the change in revenue.

A motion to change the Constitution to allow the use of electronic voting was defeated.

Thursday finishes with the presentation of the Annual Convention Awards.

Convention 2012 underway

April 19, 2012  1:00 p.m.

The 2012 OPSEU Annual Convention is now underway at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.

Thursday morning began with welcome speeches from Marie Clarke Walker from the Canadian Labour Congress, Toronto City Councillor Janet Davis and Tourism Toronto representative Denise Wiese. Wiese also presented a cheque to OPSEU’s Social Justice Fund in the amount of $10,000.

President Smokey Thomas delivered his opening address to the members, and then delegates received a report on the union’s audited financial statements. Debate also began on giving official committee status to the Aboriginal Circle, and allowing electronic voting for local elections.

After lunch, debate will begin on the proposed temporary dues levy, and the budget.