Sisters and Brothers:
After much thought and reflection I am writing to advise that I have decided to retire and will not let my name stand for re-election at our upcoming National Convention.
My 40 years of membership in our union, 32 of which have included full-time union work, including the past 12 years as National President, have been both an honour and a privilege. Serving CUPE members full-time has been a tremendous opportunity that very few get to experience.
Throughout my career I have done my utmost to portray our Union in a principled and professional fashion. The work of CUPE members delivering quality public services, makes for a more equal Canada, and I have always believed our members deserve strong and effective leadership from their union.
I am proud of our growth, over 100,000 new members over the past 12 years. I am proud of our policies and our alignment with progressive groups such as the Canada Health Coalition and the Council of Canadians. I am proud that our Strike Fund sits at over $80 million, our collective commitment within and amongst all 634,000 CUPE members. I am proud of the hundreds of rank and file activists and staff I have worked with over the years.
Lastly, I am proud of CUPE’s standing within both our national and global trade union movements, and the political party our movement founded, the New Democratic Party of Canada.
Leading our union has been an honour and a privilege, but it is time for me to step aside. I have every confidence in the talent within our leadership and that the election of our 6th National President will be a seamless and positive chapter in CUPE’s rich history.
My term as National President will end on November 6th. Thank you for your unwavering support over the years. Please know I will continue to support our union and our shared goal of social justice for all workers.