Report of the Regional Vice-President Charlottetown Head Office November 2020

I would like to respectfully submit my RVP activities for the period of May 2020 to September 2020.

I am not sure where to really start here. Our world as we know it has been turned upside down. I hope you and your family have remained safe during this unprecedented time. COVID-19 has not only affected our personal lives, but it has also drastically changed our working lives as well. We have had to adapt to working from home and online. From teleconference to teleconference to virtual online meetings and no face to face meetings, the way we are accustomed to doing our union business has changed. It has been challenging and exhausting at times, we continue to adapt to this new way of working, and I am proud to say your NEO has adjusted well.

Health and Safety has taken most of my time, as I Co-chair the Local H.O. Occupational Health and Safety Committee (OHS) and Co-chair the National Occupational Health and Safety Policy Committee (NOHSPC) as well. The NOHSPC meeting went from four times a year to weekly. Here is just a list of some of the items that we worked on:

OSH Action Report/Plan, Business Continuity Plan, Business Response and Recovery Plan, COVID-19 Building Evacuation Plan, COVID-19 Management Action Plan, Draft Office Guidelines, Easing Restrictions, Equipment and Furniture Guidelines, Equipping Employees Remotely, First Aid Plan, Extreme Heat, Office Checklists, Hazardous Occurrence plan, OHS Gap Analysis, OHS Management Response and Action Plan, OSH Newsletter, Pandemic Plan, Survey Results, Terms of Reference, Virtual Training, H&S Floor Inspections, Employee/Employer Toolkits, Accessibility Network, Infrastructure-Draft Readiness checklist, Bill C-65 Working Group, Ergonomics just to name some of the documents that I need to review and provide feedback on.

I have attended all UVAE H.O. Local meetings and have weekly scheduled check-in meetings with the local executive to keep both them and me up to date. The NEO has been meeting multiple times a week since COVID-19. I feel this pandemic has made your NEO Executive, a closer, stronger, more collaborate and dialed in group to which the members will greatly benefit from. There is a lot work that goes on behind the scenes that most UVAE members are unaware of to move our labour movement forward in a positive direction. I would like to thank my fellow executive team members for all that you do for our UVAE members.

I have also had my reoccurring meetings with MP’s and the Premier, along with multiple Provincial Ministers on various PSAC and Federation of Labour lobbing subjects.

I continue in my role on the PEI Federation of Labour as the Treasurer. I attended all PEIFL monthly meetings, PSAC Area Council Meetings and PSAC Human Rights meetings.

Health and Safety has been very time consuming and exhausting at times, but I am happy that it is moving in a positive direction, as the old saying goes “short term pain, for long term gain”. It took a lot of lobbying and effort on our part and quite a bit of push back from the department, but they finally are on board and working with us with a similar vision towards improving the Health and Safety for all our employees. It is going to take a lot of work, time, and effort to get VAC H&S up to where it should be, but we are moving in the right direction.
In Solidarity,
Jody LaPierre