Sisters and Brothers,
Today marks the beginning of my term as IAM Canadian General Vice-President. I am honoured and privileged to be able to count on your confidence and to work alongside you for the benefit of workers, our communities and our Union.
The 15 months of the global pandemic that we have just experienced have spared no one and I want to show solidarity with all those who have suffered or are still suffering from the consequences of this crisis. There are encouraging signs on the horizon and together we have the strength, courage and resilience to rise above this ordeal and build for the future.
With the health restrictions easing, we can soon begin to work together again in our workplaces, in our executives and in our union gatherings, for the greater good of our union and ourselves.
We all have a role to play in repositioning our union in a post-COVID-19 reality and in pursuing our mission to improve the working and living conditions for all of us. As Canadian General Vice-President, I will listen, coordinate, advise, mobilize and support my IAM sisters and brothers and as we fight together for a better future for all.
The success of a union depends on unity and the development of a strong sense of belonging. To strengthen our ties, we must be aware of the realities and needs of our members across Canada.
To make the IAM an even stronger union capable of leading the fight for justice in the workplace and in society at large, we must use our energy wisely. We need to see our different ways of thinking and acting as our most valuable assets, not as potential dividers. This is how we will build a strategy that respects the particularities and capabilities of each of us.
Before I conclude this message, I would like to thank outgoing GVP Stan Pickthall for all that he has done for us. Stan has always had the well-being of the IAM and its members at heart. Despite the sacrifices and difficult choices he had to make during his life as a trade unionist, his involvement and dedication to his sisters and brothers and to his organization remained exemplary. He was an important part of our union as well as a great activist who always gave his best. I wish him a well-deserved retirement, rest, pleasure, health and serenity, filled with good times surrounded by his wife Donna, his family and his friends.
Finally, I look forward to meeting you and working with you to strengthen our union in a sustainable way and to promote and defend the interests of our Machinist sisters and brothers, their families and their community.
Canadian General Vice-President