Call your Union…it’s really OKAY!

call your unionWe often hear fear in peoples’ voices when they phone the union hall for the first time. There’s a hushed voice at the other end of the line, reluctant to make the call, afraid of negative repercussions. We ask for a name and there’s a pause… a beat while the caller considers whether it’s safe to give their real name. We are accustomed to getting just a first name.

When we ask for details about the problem, we have to be patient. Sometimes the story comes out in tiny, vague pieces. Afraid of giving too much away, details are disguised and identities are masked. While we may get to the real story and names eventually, it requires careful listening and a lot of reassurance. There is fear that by calling your union you have set in motion something you can’t control.

There are a few things you need to know.

  • You are allowed to talk to your union!
  • Your information is confidential.
  • We will never, not ever, contact your employer without your express permission.
  • If you have a meeting with a Shop Steward, they are bound by the same rules of confidentiality that we are here at the Union Hall. They are trained, knowledgeable and discreet.
  • Sometimes the problem you are experiencing at work is not grievable; that’s a fact. Your union rep will help determine whether or not there are grounds for a grievance. If there are, the decision to proceed is yours.
  • If, after discussion with your union rep you choose to file a grievance, the process will be explained to you fully before any action is taken. You need to be comfortable with the way things progress. No grievance will be filed on your behalf without your consent & participation.
  • If you choose NOT to file a grievance or proceed with any action, that’s okay too. Sometimes all you need is someone objective to help you see things more clearly.
  • If you are called to a discipline meeting with your employer, you have a right to union representation. Call us as soon as you are told of a meeting and we will make sure you don’t go into it alone.

Your Collective Agreement is a big document. It may seem daunting but it’s worth a read. Your workplace probably has a Shop Steward or union representative who can take some time to go through things with you if you’re not sure. If you don’t know who to call, then please call us. We’re here to help. You can call us at (867) 667-2331. If you live in the communities, call us toll-free at 1-888-YEU-2331 (1-888-938-2331). And hey; you can always email contact@yeu.ca.

YEU Human Rights Speaker Series 2014

We are very excited to announce this year’s Human Rights Speaker Series. December 9-12 we offer noon hour presentations addressing human rights & social justice issues which impact our communities every day.  Please join us for lunch as we explore these topics with panelists who really understand the issues.

December 9: Dating Violence: Red Flags & Resources

This discussion will focus on the reality of violent teen and young adult relationships.  We’ll hear some statistics, consider some red flags and talk about what resources exist in our community. How do you tell if your relationship is healthy? What do you do when a friend is in trouble or you suspect your friend is a bad date?  We welcome an outreach worker from the RCMP, a youth worker from BYTE and a representative of the Victoria Faulkner Women’s Centre.

December 10: Housing & Homelessness: What’s at stake, what can we do?

The effects of precarious housing are far reaching. Homelessness is not exclusive to those we deem hard to house, and it affects people across our societal spectrum. We welcome your input in a discussion of the challenge of homelessness. This is not a problem that affects only those who struggle with homelessness; a community that can’t offer its citizens safe and affordable housing cannot grow to its full potential. We’ll have Kate Mechan, an expert from the Yukon Anti-Poverty Coalition, Charlotte Hrenchuk of the Yukon Status of Women Council and the insight of a Whitehorse resident who has lived the experience of being without secure housing.

December 11: Who Feeds Us? Yukon Farmers, Yukon Food!                                                       2014 has been named “Year of the Family Farm” by the United Nations.

Food Security is a buzz phrase we hear often, especially when a highway goes out or a truck breaks down on its way to us; Yukoners depend heavily on food from “away”.  There is a growing movement toward improved sustainability and local production. We welcome pioneer organic farmer, Yukon’s Farmer of the Year for 2014, Mary Girouard of Rivendell Farms.  Tom & Simone Rudge of Aurora Mountain Farms will also be at the table.  As well as his efforts at the family farm, Tom Rudge is a passionate advocate for a GMO Free Yukon, while Simone’s research at the Yukon College’s Northern Research Greenhouse will inform Yukon agriculture for many seasons to come. Matt Ball  is a professional agrologist with the Yukon Government Agriculture Branch. He works closely with many of the farmers in the territory on aspects of soils, fertilizers, growing conditions, research, and market opportunities.  Matt has spent most of his life in the Yukon and drives to help build the agriculture industry so we have local food on our plates and a diversified economy.

December 12: Strong Women Take the Lead

We invite you to a great round table chat with some strong women leading the way. Whitehorse United Church Minister Bev Brazier, Kate White, MLA for Takhini-Kopper King, Educator & advocate for aboriginal youth Marilyn Jensen, and entrepreneur & community leader Patti Balsillie and  will share some of their experiences and ideas on leadership for women. Each representing entirely different types of leadership, we look forward to an interesting and active discussion.

These events are FREE & open to everyone. Seating is limited as our meeting room has a capacity of 45. We are pleased to offer a complimentary simple lunch each day provided by the Bird House Bakery.  If you have any questions please call us at 667-2331.

If you plan to bring a group PLEASE let us know in advance so we can ensure there is adequate seating available.

All presentations will take place in the YEU Hall, Lucy Jackson Training Room downstairs.  Please, join the event on Facebook and we’ll see you there!