CUPE Alberta Awards

CUPE Alberta would like to recognize members at Division Convention 2018 who have contributed in the following areas:

CUPE Alberta Equality Award

InukshukIn addition to being a work of art, inukshuk means “to act in the capacity of a human.”

CUPE Locals in Alberta are invited to submit nominations for the CUPE Alberta Equality award. The Equality award recognizes CUPE members whose work on equality issues has made a difference.

Deadline for nominations is December 31, 2017.  Click here for application form.


CUPE Alberta Health & Safety Award

canary_bannerDo you know a member who has made a significant contribution in the area of health and safety in Alberta?  If so, we would like to hear from you!

Deadline for nominations is December 31, 2017  Click here for more information.



Please submit applications.


Library Workers Honoured at CUPE National Convention

L-R: Sheila Stewart AVP Northwest, George Carnegie AVP Calgary, Marle Roberts CUPE AB President, Crystal Sali AVP Ft McMurray, David Graham GVP North

Library workers were front and centre today as CUPE recognized and honoured the work that is done in libraries across Alberta. CUPE acknowledged their role in education, research and literacy in our communities.

CUPE Alberta is joining CUPE National to recognize the people who do this important work.

“Our Library workers provide so many vital services” CUPE Alberta President Marle Roberts declared. “We welcome this opportunity to thank and honour their important role in our communities”

Local Election Primer

CUPE Alberta has prepared an election primer for assessing your municipal and school board candidates. While CUPE Alberta recommends checking out your local Labour District Council for their recommendations, it is important for each of us to be able to assess a candidate who is coming to us at the doorstep.

To help, here are some questions you can ask candidates should they come to your door.

Municipal Election Primer

School Board Election Primer

Happy Labour Day

Labour Day is the day people join to celebrate the achievements of workers in Canada.

Here in Alberta, we have been working hard to improve our working conditions, wages, vacations, benefits, and health and safety by standing up and demanding change, and with an NDP government in power, we have seen some success.

Sometimes, change has not been easy. Over our history, our members have risked their livelihoods, and sometimes even lives by doing the right thing. When our 35,000 CUPE members stand together, we can affect the change we want to see in the world, right here at home.

Solidarity is a force that can make a real difference in workers’ lives. Solidarity is strength.

No one knows that better than CUPE local 37, who celebrate 100 years of standing up and making sure working people in Calgary have a strong advocate.

I know CUPE 37 members care deeply about Calgary, their members, and their neighbours.

CUPE 37 have had their fair share of fights to make sure that Calgary remains a great place to live, work and raise a family.

And another fight may be on the horizon. We stand with CUPE 37 against any attempt by this council to sell our public golf courses. Our public golf courses provide affordable, good quality recreation opportunities here in Calgary. Trust that we will make sure that council hears that loud and clear if they try to take it away.

A $15 minimum wage, better labour standards, and new employee rights, have all been hard fought by members of labour unions and are just some of the victories which have been won over the last couple of years.

Thank you to all the CUPE members who show up and make a difference!

In Solidarity,

Marle Roberts
President, CUPE Alberta

National Pharmacare Now

CUPE Alberta was pleased to join with Friends of Medicare and call on the Premiers to adopt a National Pharmacare strategy during the most recent meeting of first ministers in Edmonton.

A universal public prescription drug program would be a progressive and positive change to our current patchwork system. Universal Pharmacare would leave no Canadian behind, and, almost as importantly, would significantly reduce costs to governments, to employers and to workers. That is the conclusion of a recent in-depth analysis done by CUPE.

Our current prescription drug approach is based on provincial plans with wildly different – and most-often minimal – coverage on one hand, and on the other, a hodgepodge, “hybrid” system where public and private insurance coexist. This is shown to be highly inefficient.

John Vradenburgh attends the rally for a National Pharmacare Program

Last year, CUPE presented a submission to the House of Commons’ Standing Committee on Health. The Committee has been studying the development of a national Pharmacare program.

The submission clearly and unequivocally shows that private insurance plans have three major downsides. First, they are not available to all. Low-wage, part-time and precarious workers – who typically are not covered by a workplace plan – are especially at risk. Second, the drug costs are rising quickly on private insurers and these costs are almost entirely shifted on the backs of workers. Third, the high number of public and private insurers reduces the capacity to save money through bulk purchasing of drugs.

All these problems would be resolved with a public system, rather than the patchwork system we have in Canada now. Public solutions can work better and save money.

Some statistics:

Households who often cannot afford to buy prescribed medication: 25 per cent.
A comprehensive Pharmacare program, similar to New Zealand’s, could save Canadians almost $10 billion a year.

It’s time for pensions that work

Unlike most public sector pensions, the Local Authority Pension Plan is not co-managed by the people the plan was set up to benefit – workers. CUPE and other unions are asking the Alberta government to change the plan so workers and employers have equal say on how to run things. That means changes have to be negotiated and agreed to by both sides. Just like our contracts.It also means future governments can’t change our pensions without our approval – like the Conservatives tried to do a few years ago.

Please send this letter to your MLA and request a meeting to let them know your opinion (we can even give you talking points for that meeting here).