There are many important days of observance during the month of December. We start the month with World Aids Day December 1, observe a National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women December 6, celebrate International Human Rights Day on December 10th, the winter solstice December 21st and of course Christmas Day December 25th. While many of these days are quietly noted and honored privately with our families, we at YEU have been thankful for the opportunity to join in community observation a few times this month.
The December 6th ceremony in the Elijah Smith Building, honoring the women killed at Montreal’s École Polytechnique in 1989 was moving and powerful. As a community, we pledged to work harder to change the narrative and keep Yukon’s women safe. Thank you to the PSAC Regional Women’s Committee for your work and efforts to support not just this event, but the continued commitment to women of the north.
International Human Rights Day was observed at YEU through our Human Rights Speaker Series. This four-day event offered informal presentations over the noon hour from December 9th through 12th, covering topics reflecting human rights & social justice issues. We thank everyone who spoke, and all who came to listen and question, learn and challenge. Again we wish to thank the PSAC Pride Committee, whose event featuring Chase Blodgett added much to the week. Chase Blodgett’s presentation on navigating legislation as a Yukon trans man was informative, offering us an invitation to think about gender and social interaction very differently.
We capped off a week of talking (and listening and eating!) with a wonderful Free Family Skate at the Canada Games Centre. For the third year we invited anyone and everyone to strap on a pair of skates, sip some hot chocolate courtesy of the PSAC Regional Youth Committee, and enjoy a stress free family afternoon. We were delighted to see the highest turnout ever, with all ages enjoying a chance to spend time together.
As we wind down (wind up?) to Christmas, we enjoyed a chance to do some good for the Salvation Army’s residents and guests. Saturday December 20th started very early, with an 8am call at Superstore. There, volunteers loaded carts and boxes with all the fixings for the Salvation Army’s traditional Christmas dinner. 15 turkeys, pounds and pounds of carrots, potatoes and onions, stuffing and treats were delivered before the sun was up on the last Saturday before Christmas. This shopping expedition has happened annually for more than 10 years, PSAC Area Council’s ongoing commitment to the community.
We want to wish you and your family every happiness this holiday season. We hope that 2015 brings happiness and prosperity to our members and our communities. From all of us at YEU to all of YOU, happy holidays!