More than 80 members from 30 electoral districts attended workshops in Toronto and Oshawa this month on how to lobby their elected officials. Hosted by SEP, the training was run by representatives from the Ontario Federation of Labour and Canadian Labour Congress.
Trainings are coming to other regions soon, including in Bruce County on April 12.
Members at the Toronto and Oshawa sessions learned how to setup a meeting with their local politicians, how to prepare for their meeting, dos and don’ts while in a meeting, and what to do afterwards to make sure the meeting had the greatest impact possible.
These lessons came in the context of two key labour movement campaigns: the Ontario Federation of Labour’s (OFL) Make It Fair campaign, and the Canadian Labour Congress’s (CLC) advocacy against the federal government’s pension destabilization legislation, Bill C-27.
Among the next opportunity for SEP members to get involved in meeting with their elected reps to advance labour issues will be in the Make It Fair campaign. The Ontario government is expected to release the recommendations of the Changing Workplaces Review this spring, which will be followed by intense lobbying as the Liberals decide which recommendations to implement through new legislation. In preparation for that, the OFL is leading a postcard campaign that all members will be asked to participate in. By signing a postcard to their local MPP, members will be showing the broad public support for better labour laws. Once a critical mass of postcards is signed, SEP along with other unions will be delivering them to MPPs during meetings to show how those MPPs’ constituents feel. SEP will be seeking members who have completed the lobby training sessions to participate in those MPP meetings.
SEP expects to announce more lobby training workshop dates in the near future.