First off I would like to thank the Executive and the local for the support through Pride season and all of the things we accomplished because of it. The Pride events were a complete success we got members of 114 out in Victoria, Kamloops and Vancouver. The float design with the new Unifor Pride logo was a hit as well, my husband built it and I used some of our Pride budget to fund the material costs. I did that because it will be at every Pride our local attends. The Float and parade in Kamloops was big loud and had a huge impact on the local community. People cheered and commented on it eyes lit up with giant smiles. I will call that a big success especially since it happened right at the end of our sign card campaign. The community here in Kamloops and Vernon got to see the sign cards all month on the buses and then a big obnoxious float for Pride. Next year I would like to add some signage to the float letting the community know who Unifor is here.
I have learned a lot about our Union this year, how it works, what it does, and I have made a lot of contacts who are all wonderful people. I have started to network within the local for pride events and any 2slgbtqia+ issues that may need attention. We have a WhatsApp group that covers Bc and connects us all. I have also convinced the Bcrc Pride Committee to start celebrating and including our allies, as a result allies are now in some of the discussion groups we have. There is a need still for Queer only spaces but this is a step towards bridging gaps. I intend to make a 114 Pride page and email address so that events and discussion can openly happen and pictures can be shared, it will be Ally friendly as well as the needs of the interior in regards to allies is different than larger cities.
The Pride sign cards have also made a large community impact. People ask about them ,drivers in the 2slgbtqia+ community have commented on them as well. I have approached the Bcrc about the campaign and we would like to ask the National to help fund a Provincial or National campaign doing the same thing. This would leave my Pride budget for next year open for more solidarity building events. We would love to see the community support on buses in every city. If we want their support we have to show them they have ours. Bc has been leading the charge in 2slgbtqia+ matters all year the other Regional Committees have adopted our ideas coast to coast and we have adopted theirs. Its wonderful to be apart of such a large welcoming community. I look forward to next year when we are all more seasoned and know each other better I can just imagine what we can accomplish.
I am also very proud that the Ally training course resolution passed at Canada council. The Pride Activism network we have created has been working very hard on getting the knowledge of the need for it out there. That need and want to support our allies originated from the rural locals. Lley Clark from Waterloo Local 333 started the resolution and many of us got on board. Our needs are different. In the large cities its very easy to find your “Community” and stick within it. To live and work within your own community is easy. In the interior its not so easy. Things need to be blended and community barriers don’t exist. I find this leads to a much stronger, colorful and complete community. On the coast 2slgbtqia+ events are not as readily attended by Allies as they should. My plan for the interior is the opposite I want to include and celebrate our allies in everything. I want to break down the barriers of separation and understanding.
My plan for next year is to focus on the Pride events and be healthy enough to attend them all. I want to be able to reach every 2slgbtqia+ member in our local and make them feel supported. I also want to empower our allies with the knowledge that they can come to me with questions and concerns and know that I am their ally too. The creation of a 114 Pride page will help with that I will need help getting the email address out to the individual Units. Part of next years Pride Budget will go to the creation of a Local 114 Bbq at the end of Kamloops Pride where we will be inviting the Local to attend. That especially means the Executive. The Bbq is a Solidarity building event I want it to be about celebrating our local and its members. I plan on collaborating with the Bcrc Committee as well for a similar event on the coast. The BCRC took over the 111 Bbq this year because local 111 had trouble getting funding. It is open for all locals to attend and is family friendly. Next year it will be bigger and I expect to see some 114 members out for some fun and food. The Union works best when its united and we need to have more events where we build bridges. Next Year I should have a large enough Pride network that the interior cities can support each other and attend each others events. I have a huge support network here in Kamloops and plan on expanding it. I have already introduced myself to local 3000 and 10b and invited them to Pride this year. None of them attended but I don’t think I gave them a loud enough invitation. Next year ill make sure they know earlier. Today im heading off to the casino (local 3000) to hand out Unifor Pride Buttons and stickers. They will know who I am and have my contact info.
I will attach some pictures from my adventures this year for you to enjoy.
Thank you, in Solidarity
BCRC Standing Pride Committee