Autumn View, Edition 1, 2024


Complete, downloadable version of the newsletter

Retired Members Division Executive Committee List for 2022 – 2024

Region 1


Gino Franche


Heather McMichael
(519) 661-9376


Debbie Riopelle
(519) 978-3055

Region 2


Ed Faulknor – Div. Chair
(905) 385-2142


Judy Devries
(905) 646-0047


Elaine Young
(519) 327-1914

Region 3


Betty Cree
(705) 748-2076


Ethel LaValley
(613) 334-2912


Dora Robinson
(905) 751-9851

Region 4


John Hanson
(613) 213-4674


Ben Treidlinger
(613) 570-1171


Robert Cook
(613) 476-7010

Region 5


Yasmin Damani


Robert Field
(416) 527-1373


Nancy Pridham
(416) 625-6364

Region 6


Janine Johnson – Div. Secretary
(705) 567-3934


Brian Luckett
(705) 492-7556


Elizabeth Anich

Region 7

Sandra Snider – Div. Vice-Chair
(807) 630-4751


Janet Wright
(807) 630-5064


Sophia Ambrose
(807) 621-5062

Group of people wearing Retired Members Division shirts and holding a Retired Members Division flag

From left to right: Tara Maszczakiewicz (Board Liaison), John Hanson (Region 4), Sandra Snider, (Region 7), Ed Faulknor (Region 2), Janine Johnson (Region 6), Yasmin Damani (Region 5), Betty Cree (Region 3), Gino Franche (Region 1)

Important Numbers

  • Great West Life – 1-800-874-5899
  • Sun Life – 1-800-361-6212
  • Pension Board (retired before Dec. 31,1992) – 1-800-668-6203
  • OPSEU Pension Trust (retired after Dec. 31,1992) – 1-800 906-7738
  • CAAT Pension Plan – 1-866-350-2228
  • HOOPP Pension Plan – 1-888-333-3659
  • OMERS Pension Plan – 1-800-387-0813
  • Province of Ontario – OPSEU – Travel Insurance – Can/USA – 1-855-222-4051
  • OPSEU Head Office – 1-800-268-7376

A message from our chair, Ed Faulknor OPSEU/SEFPO retired members division

During the fourth week of October of 2023 the Retired Members Division held its first ever Retirees’ Activist Conference. Approximately 80 RMD members were brought into Toronto to regenerate and get revved up for more union involvement with OPSEU/SEFPO and other unions. From the guest speakers to the actual training sessions, to the final panel and wrap up discussions, we were able to build members’ interest and draw many new ideas to get and keep our members active.

Although I appreciate that the vast number of our members were not and could not be part of the conference, the conference was designed and aimed directly at you. The need for all of us to get involved is paramount in the continuing fight for social justice. If we are to stop the privatization of our hospitals or make Long Term Care homes safe and reasonably inexpensive, just as examples, all of us must get involved.

The conference was merely step one in that effort. The 80 or so participants are now seized with the responsibility to not only get out there and be part of the fight, but also reach out to each and every one of you to show you that you too can be part of this fight. Whether you are taking part in a demonstration, or a picket line or writing your MPP, or a letter to the editor or being part of a phone tree or coming to meetings to exchange ideas on what can be done to achieve our goals, we could use your help in these efforts.

The people of Ontario over the last year have shown that getting out and joining the fight can change minds at Queens Park. Whether that’s the reversal with the Greenbelt scenario or doing a 180-degree flip with funding cuts for autistic children, enough pressure can affect change and that is just two examples.

Before more damage can be done, before our health care system is destroyed and before Doug Ford turns everything over to his rich friends, we must act and act now!

Ed Faulknor, Chair

OPSEU/SEFPO Retired Members Division

Laura Walton, Ahmad Gaied, Jackie Taylor elected to lead the Ontario Federation of Labour on platform of worker power, political education, and organizing to win

TORONTO, Nov. 21, 2023 – At the 17th biennial convention of the Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) on Tuesday, educational assistant Laura Walton, grocery store clerk Ahmad Gaied, and community worker Jackie Taylor were elected to be the next executive officers of Canada’s largest labour federation starting January 1, 2024.

Running together as Team Ignite, these members of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW), and the United Steelworkers (USW) respectively received a strong mandate to conduct the renewed energy of the labour movement to organize workers, build workers’ power, and win a better future for workers and all residents of the country’s most wealthy province.

“Ontarians are facing intersecting crises of high prices, a lack of affordable housing, an escalating climate emergency, health care privatization, democracy- threatening misinformation, and a corrupt provincial government enriching millionaire developers at the expense of the majority of Ontarians who are struggling every day,” said Laura Walton, president-elect of the OFL. “Workers are ready to meet this moment with positive solutions and building a movement with the resolve to win. It’s time for a better standard of living for the people whose work is responsible for record profits – especially racialized and young workers who have been told, for too long, their only choice is to accept low-wage jobs and worse working conditions than the last generation.”

“Workers’ unions – united through our federation – are well-resourced and prepared to fight for higher wages, no more workers killed on the job, and defined benefit pensions for all,” said re-elected OFL secretary-treasurer Ahmad Gaied. “I started working in one of billionaire Galen Weston’s super-profitable grocery stores when I was 17. My coworkers and I are tired of rich posers like Doug Ford and Pierre Poilievre who spew hatred and disinformation because they know that the more people learn about what they actually stand for, the less anyone is willing to vote for them. I’m proud to be part of a team that’s heard the call for a new focus on political education so workers can be organized not just in our workplaces, but at the ballot box and in the halls of power too.”

“The wave of strikes across Ontario is continuing, and that’s a good thing,” said Jackie Taylor, the OFL’s next executive vice-president. “Workers are joining unions in record numbers because we understand our value and refuse to accept low pay, long hours, no pensions, and overall disrespect from illegitimately rich owners who do no real work for their wealth. Change comes through struggle.
Frontline workers are leading the way and I’m humbled to help my co-workers
across Ontario channel their power – and use it to win the changes they need and deserve.”

This will be Walton and Taylor’s first term as president and executive vice-president. Gaied has been re-elected to serve a third two-year term as secretary- treasurer.

Founded in 1957, the OFL has grown to represent over one million Ontario workers belonging to more than 1,500 locals from 54 affiliated unions, making it Canada’s largest labour federation.
Article taken from OLF new release on their web page.

Pictures taken from OFL Facebook page. Left to right November 21, 2023, at the 17th biennial convention of the Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) Laura Walton (CUPE), Ahmad Gaied (UFCW), and Jackie Taylor (USW) were elected as the next executive officers of Canada’s largest labour federation starting January 1, 2024.

You Snooze, You … Win?

Just how bad is it, really, to smash the snooze button when your alarm blares? What about doing it a second time, or a third?

New research out of Sweden suggests that it may not be as detrimental to your sleep as
it seems, though some sleep experts still advise against it.

Across two studies, researchers set out to examine the effects of snoozing, or using intermittent alarms, to postpone finally dragging yourself out of bed. They started by surveying over 1,700 people about their sleep habits and found that nearly 70 percent of them routinely hit the snooze button. The subjects mostly did so because they felt too tired to wake up, though 17 percent said they snoozed because “it feels good.”

The researchers then had 31 habitual snoozers spend several nights in a sleep lab. On one morning, they were allowed to hit the snooze button every 10 minutes or so, for up to 30 extra minutes of rest. But on another morning, they had to get up right after their alarms went off.

Immediately after the participants woke up, the researchers flipped on the lights and presented them with math problems and other cognitive tests — a challenge even more grating than a shrieking alarm, and one the participants had to complete before having a cup of coffee.

Overall, participants performed slightly better on some of the cognition tests when they were allowed to snooze for 30 minutes, and their sleep quality wasn’t significantly worse because of the morning snoozing, said Tina Sundelin, a researcher at Stockholm University and the lead author of the studies.

If you tend to be very tired in the morning, “half-sleeping, or sleeping rather than being awake and not functioning, might actually be helpful to your final wake-up,” she said.

The sleep lab portion of the study included only a small number of people, and the average age of the participants was around 27. Both of those factors make it difficult to draw widespread conclusions about the effects of snoozing on sleep. The researchers also excluded people with insomnia symptoms and people who said they had trouble sleeping in places other than their own beds.

Broadly speaking, experts said there was not strong evidence to definitively prove whether it’s a bad idea to hit the snooze button because there is so little research on the subject. A 2022 study of 450 people in the United States found that those who snoozed

didn’t get less sleep overall. But another study of around 300 university students in Japan found that those who hit the snooze button had more prolonged sleep inertia — which can include the groggy, confused, irritable, “almost a little bit drunken” feeling you have when you first wake up, said Dr. Phyllis Zee, a sleep medicine specialist at Northwestern Medicine. Sleep inertia also slows down your thinking, reduces your reaction time and worsens your short-term memory.

Snoozing may make waking up less unpleasant, said Dr. John Saito, a spokesman for the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. Drifting back to bed after an alarm goes off sends you into a lighter stage of sleep, he said, which is a less “brutal” way to wake up than from a deeper sleep.

The urge to hit your snooze button could point to larger issues, said Dr. Rachel Salas, assistant medical director of Johns Hopkins Center for Sleep and Wellness. Many snoozers she sees are sleep deprived. Often, they’re not going to bed and waking up at consistent times; in some cases, people who rely on the snooze button have undiagnosed sleep disorders, like narcolepsy and sleep apnea.

Rather than setting and snoozing multiple alarms, a better way to haul yourself out of bed may be to put your phone or alarm across the room, said Dr. Indira Gurubhagavatula, a sleep specialist at Penn Medicine. Doing so can break the habit of relying on the snooze button and make it harder to slip back into sleep. Getting sunlight in the morning can also help.

If you’re able to repeatedly hit your snooze button in the first place, that means you have the luxury of time, Dr. Gurubhagavatula said; you don’t actually have to wake up for your first alarm. So, you might as well just set your alarm for as late as you can, she said, and not lose the precious minutes of rest between interruptions. Still, she acknowledged, that may not dissuade the lifelong snoozers. There’s science, and then there’s habit,” she said.

This New York Times article was legally licensed through AdvisorStream and provided to Autumn View by Leony d’Graaf Hastings of d’Graaf Financial Strategies —

OFL statement: Ceasefire Now. Aid to Gaza. End the blockade.

The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) is speaking out to oppose the rapidly escalating violence in Israel-Palestine, and joining the call for an immediate ceasefire, aid to Gaza, and an end to the blockade.

In its statement on October 9, 2023, the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), representing labour organizations internationally, unequivocally condemned all attacks on innocent civilians. We too condemn Hamas’ attack on October 7 and Israel’s subsequent response. Violence must not beget more violence.

The loss of thousands of lives has caused unspeakable pain, and it must end now.

With each passing hour, the situation is spiraling to a full-scale war, on top of an already devastating humanitarian crisis.

The OFL calls on the Canadian Labour Congress, and all trade union allies, to join us in making these demands of the Government of Canada:

• Call for an immediate ceasefire of all hostilities in Israel-Palestine
• Call for an end to the blockade of Gaza and for the restoration of humanitarian aid and access to the basic necessities of life
• Call for the safe and immediate return of all hostages and civilians being held in detention without charge
Support for these demands is widespread and growing.

On October 20, 2023, the ITUC backed the demand for an immediate ceasefire.

In Canada, a broad coalition of civil society, faith, Arab, Jewish, and labour organizations issued its own powerful statement for a ceasefire. We applaud these initiatives and pledge our solidarity to all peace-loving people who are building the movement we need to end the violence.

The United Nations and the World Health Organization have sounded the alarm, Gaza is running out of water and food, and hospitals and water treatment plants can’t run without electricity or fuel.

Across Canada, workers are experiencing a sharp spike in Anti-Arab and anti- Palestinian racism, Islamophobia, and antisemitism. We vehemently condemn these acts.

The labour movement has a long tradition of speaking out against war. In our own organizations, we pledge to create safer, welcoming, and inclusive spaces for members to continue discussing this issue.

We firmly believe a just and lasting peace is possible in Israel-Palestine, where people of all backgrounds and faiths can live peaceably side by side, in safety and security, and with justice for all.

Taken from the OFL web site