CPAC Report November 2019
By Peter Beens
I attended the CPAC regional conference on behalf of ARM District 22 in Toronto November 1-2. The regional meetings were also held in Ottawa, Thunder Bay, Sudbury, and London. Toronto’s conference was emceed by Gary Fenn (@fenngarr on Twitter). Shannon Smith and David Harrington also represented D22.
Much time was spent discussing the successful political action campaigns that have been run in the past year, including No Cuts to Education; Better Schools, Better Economy; and Here for Students (https://www.hereforstudents.ca). Over 90,0000 No Cuts to Education buttons were distributed. If we want to make more buttons or shirts, the graphics files are available via OSSTF.
From The Conference Board of Canada, Each dollar of public education spending generates $1.30 in total economic benefits to Ontario. At the same time, the inverse holds true for each dollar taken from public education. (http://bit.ly/34BpGsF)
The Here for Students videos are very popular, with over 48 million impressions. There were almost 400,000 visits to the website, and over 250,000 letters sent to MPPs and the Minister of Education about this.
There was time time spent discussing OSSTF’s strategy for transparent bargaining (https://bargainingforeducation.ca). This is proving to be a successful strategy and is popular with the public.
Initiatives such as these are working and the public and the media are now generally on our side, more so than the government’s.
To help, share OSSTF’s message, however you can. Follow them on social media. Their Facebook page is most popular, followed by Instagram, and then by Twitter.
OSSTF’s infographics are worth sharing (http://bit.ly/2C9rzAy).
A surprise to me that is that each school can have an OSSTF School Council rep. This is useful in communicating OSSTF’s concerns to parents and being there for parents to discuss any concerns they have with a teacher.
There was lots of discussion about being proactive when it comes to communicating with the public. Think of new ways of being involved, like the school council idea mentioned above or participating in community initiatives such as as climate strikes.
If you do not already follow OSSTF D22 on social media, please do so.
There is money available for any CPAC initiatives. Just ask.
Overall I found attending the CPAC regional very beneficial. There were only four ARM reps there, so I’m happy that D22 was represented.