Fifty-five years ago today (April 19th), the NSGEU held its’ founding Convention as the Nova Scotia Civil Service Association. At that time, just 3,200 civil servants delivered a range of public services throughout this province.
Today, the NSGEU has grown in both size and scope, now representing almost 30,000 women and men who provide invaluable public services throughout Nova Scotia. Our members work in wide variety of settings: hospitals and laboratories, liquor stores, universities and public schools, just to name a few! All are dedicated to delivering quality public services to their fellow Nova Scotians.
Together, we have faced our fair share of challenges over our 55 years together. We’ve weathered many changes, including battles with past governments who were determined to undermine the strength of workers. Fortunately, in the past few years, we’ve also made great strides in laying groundwork to protect workers throughout the province: we’ve established first-contract legislation, which ensures newly unionized workplaces can have an arbitrator or the Nova Scotia Labour Relations Board impose a first collective agreement, if an agreement can’t be reached at the table. We’ve also seen increases in minimum wage, positive changes to our Pharmacare and affordable housing programs, and job creation with the development of the JobsHere strategy.
Heading into our 55th year together, the NSGEU is still growing. We’ve launched a new online home for the union (www.nsgeu.ca), increased our presence on social media to better reach members and the public, and are getting ready to move into a new building – a new home for our members – this fall. We’re also getting ready to hold our Biennial Convention (May 8th to 11th), and are excited for the Resolutions and directions from delegates that are sure to emerge.
On this, our 55th anniversary as a union, we’d like to thank you, our members, for the valuable work that you do and for the contributions you make to your workplace, community, and to the NSGEU.