Canada Employment and Immigration Union -
March 9, 2018

Black History Month in 2018 CEIU Local 70705

CEIU Local 70705 members at the Crémazie location in Gatineau celebrated Black History Month in 2018 with locally organized activities, for two shifts for two offices (the CPC-O and the OSC). Both offices share close to half of our local 70705 membership. We showed two National Film Board documentaries, Africville and Journey to Justice, both of which highlight black Canadians’ historical struggle for justice and equality, with Journey to Justice including the heroic role of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters, the US and Canada’s first all-black trade union. We had a trivia game including African-Caribbean history in a Canadian context (and of Canadians of African/Caribbean heritage) for which prizes were awarded. The culminating events were two potlucks, one for day and one for the evening shift. The potlucks included traditional dancers performing a Rwandan dance, catering planned by the BHM planning committee, and a couple of speeches, including an excellent speech about civil rights struggles in Canada and the importance of solidarity and unity.

We also included a suggested $5 donation to the potluck, with proceeds going to our former Director General, the late Paul Armstrong’s estate’s chosen charitable foundation, for which more than $500 were collected and donated. The turnout for the movies was better than expected, with a significant contingent from our sister office the OSC. The turnout for the two potlucks was HUGE.

I can’t find the words to thank my fellow local 70705 executive, sisters and brothers, enough, as well as Jacques and the CEIU NCR, for their encouragement and great help in making all of this possible. The activities brought our members together to learn from each other’s struggles and victories, and our union making it possible brought the union to the members, where it’s meant to be and from where it originates.

In solidarity,

Dinu Serbanescu
Vice President, PSAC/CEIU Local 70705


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