On May 11 – 14th the NSGEU held it’s Triennial Convention, where 317 voting delegates from all sectors and corners of the province gathered to determine the direction of your union, moving forward in the next three year term.
A wide range of exciting resolutions were tabled and debated, including some key political action resolutions that are designed to empower the union to fight back against the Nova Scotia Liberal government’s austerity agenda and their attacks on public sector workers and workers’ rights. One such resolution will empower the NSGEU to take necessary measures to defeat McNeil Liberal MLAs in next general election by strengthening our Political Action Committees and building regional campaigns to mobilize members and the public to defeat key candidates where incumbent Liberal MLAs are most vulnerable. Delegates all spoke strongly in favour of this important resolution, pointing to the success we have had fighting privatization and contracting out so far. Another significant resolution passed states that no NSGEU bargaining committee will voluntarily accept the McNeil government’s proposed wage patterns/cutbacks covered by Bill 148.
In addition to the debate of key resolutions, a new Provincial Executive team was elected, including a new President, 1st, 2nd & 3rd Vice-President, and Secretary Treasurer:
President Jason MacLean: Jason is a member of Local 480C, a Correctional Officer at the Cape Breton Correctional Facility. He grew up in the Whitney Pier neighborhood of Sydney, Nova Scotia. He has served the union in a number of roles through his years of activism including as a Steward, a member of his workplace Joint Occupational Health & Safety Committee, Local Vice-President, Facilitator, Picket Captain, Regional Councilor, Bargaining Representative, member of the Board of Directors, as well as NSGEU 3rd Vice-President, and 1st Vice-President. He has been part of the team that has led us through the legislative attacks by the McNeil government since their election in 2013. He has also represented NSGEU in the larger Nova Scotia labour movement, as the Nova Scotia Federation of Labour Vice-President Representative of Workers of Colour and Aboriginal Peoples with and as Chair of the Nova Scotia Federation of Labour (NSFL) Anti-Racism/Human Rights Committee. Nationally, he is the Vice-President of the National Executive Board of the National Union of Public and Government Employees Union (NUPGE) since 2009, and is currently a NUPGE/NSGEU Representative on the Canadian Labour Congress’ (CLC) Human Rights Committee and the CLC Workers of Colour Working Group.
Secretary-Treasurer Darren McPhee: Darren is a Social Worker with the Department of Community Services and a member of Local 8. This will be Darren’s seventh term on the Provincial Executive as Secretary-Treasurer. In addition to his Executive duties, he is the Executive Liaison to Regional Councils, Metro B & C, as well as a member of the Bargaining Council for PR Civil Service. He helped lead NSGEU’s strategic planning process for several years which brought forward the Young Workers’ Committee, the NSGEU re-branding, and the NSGEU Building Project where he served as the project manager for our new home from the beginning of its design in 2011 to its fruition in August 2013. He has been part of the leadership team that has guided us through a very challenging term as the McNeil government attempted to force 9,000 of our health care members into other unions through legislation.
1st Vice-President Sandra Mullen: Sandra works as a Licensing Officer with the Department of Community Services and is a member of Local 16 where she has served her executive as President or Vice-President for numerous terms. For the past few years, she served on the Provincial Executive as NSGEU 2nd and 3rd Vice-President. Prior to this, she was a representative on the Board of Directors from the Civil Service PR Occupational Council. She has also served on the Civil Service Bargaining Council and the Provincial Bargaining Committee as well as two terms on the Women’s Issues Committee. She has attended NSGEU’s Week-Long school, and labour education programs with the Nova Scotia Federation of Labour, NUPGE and the Canadian Labour Congress. She attended the NUPGE leadership program and has been the NSGEU representative on the Advisory Council on Women’s Issues.
2nd Vice-President Shawna Boudreau: Shawna is a registered nurse at the NSHA and a member of Local 101. She is the Chair of the Nursing Occupational Council and has served as a representative on the Board of Directors. She is also the Chair of the Nursing Bargaining Committee. Last year Shawna served on the planning committee and as a facilitator for the Leadership Symposium. This is her first term on the executive.
3rd Vice-President Kim Jenkins: Kim is a member of both Locals 423 and 119. She has worked full-time at the IWK Health Centre for the past 19 years as an Administrative Assistant, and part-time at the Veterans Memorial Hospital for the past seven years as a Utility worker in the Food & Nutrition Department. She has served in a variety of union positions over the past decade including her Local’s Executive and Bargaining Committees, Regional Council, and she has been the Chair of both the Education and Social Recreation Committee. She has represented the Administrative Professionals Occupational Council on the Board of Directors for the past five years. She has attended weeklong school as well as conferences with NUPGE, the NSFL and the CLC.