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‘Build a longer table’: OPSEU celebrates the holidays!

OPSEU President Warren (Smokey) Thomas speaks at 2018 staff holiday party.

“There’s an expression that goes: When you’ve got more than you need, build a longer table, not a higher fence. In a world of Trumps and Fords, it’s an important statement to live by, now and always.”
– OPSEU President Warren (Smokey) Thomas 

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Faces around the table reflect holiday cheer

The atmosphere was festive and the silly sweaters made for a laugh, but OPSEU’s holiday lunch was also a time to reflect on a year of hard work and accomplishments, and to regroup for the year ahead. 

The President and First Vice-President/Treasurer kibitz during the lunch

“With the election of Doug Ford as Premier, we’ve got tough challenges ahead,” said Thomas. “Ford is threatening everything our proud union stands for. To defeat his destructive agenda, we’re all going to have to work together – our members and our hard working staff – because without you, our union wouldn’t function.”

Best ugly-sweater winners!

Thomas thanked Lois Boggs, President of the Ontario Public Service Staff Union (OPSSU) and Mandy Dumais, who spoke on behalf of the Administrators’ Staff Union (ASU), for their efforts and the ongoing commitment of senior leadership within OPSEU, OPSSU and ASU to work together and build a strong relationship.

Best costumes!

“With the team we’ve got, I have no doubt we’re ready for the challenges ahead,” said Thomas. “We’re not going to allow our public sector to be gutted and privatized. We will build solidarity within our union and in the broader labour movement to oppose what is wrong and stand up for what is right, and we will continue to embrace the strength found in our diversity, and fulfil our commitment to inclusion and equity.”


After a fantastic meal, and plenty of holiday cheer, OPSEU President Thomas and First Vice-President Almeida wished staff a restful holiday break.