Inclusion of Diversity Member on executive
an historic move by union
CWA|SCA Canada has made a momentous leap
onto a new course with the addition of a Diversity Member
to its executive.
Ing Wong-Ward, a member of the Canadian Media Guild (CMG),
was acclaimed to the position on Sunday when her nomination
went unchallenged on the final day of the National Representative
Council meeting held in Ottawa from April 23 to 25.
Director Arnold Amber said this is a significant
development for the union, which is "committed to providing
access, opportunity, fair treatment and advancement for all.
"We take very seriously the
need to promote equity and inclusion so that no one is
left on the sidelines as the labour movement forges ahead.
It was also very important that our executive reflect the
diversity of not only our membership, but Canadian society
as a whole."
Michael d'Souza, director of human
rights and equity for the CBC branch of CMG, spoke highly
of his nominee, describing Wong-Ward as "one of my motivators." The
producer of an afternoon radio show in Toronto, who gets
about in a wheelchair, was behind CMG's move to a more
accessible building and has done a lot of work on pay equity
issues, said d'Souza.
It required an election to fill another vacancy on the executive.
Lois Kirkup, president of the Ottawa Newspaper Guild, and
Marc Philippe Laurin, president of the CBC branch of the
CMG, were vying for a Member At Large position. Kirkup won
a majority of ballots that were cast on Sunday.
The two nominees for the At Large positions were each given
two minutes on Saturday to make a pitch.
Kirkup, who previously held the position
of secretary and also served as Eastern Vice-President
of The Newspaper Guild, noted that she has been involved
with CWA Canada since its inception in 1995. "It takes a lot of dedication, hard
work and you have to be committed," she said. "The
times are changing (in news media)," said the chair
of the CanWest Caucus, "and we need a fresh approach."
Laurin said that he has been active
in the union movement for 29 years. After being involved
with the Guild long enough to "know how it runs," he decided it was "time
to step up to the plate." Laurin said one of his priorities
would be to do more work at the CMG to educate members regarding
the national union, CWA Canada.