Members of the Committee
Isabelle Bouchard (December 2016)/Jonathan Germain
Isabelle Boyer (December 2016)/Mathieu Lahaie
“Young people are the future. They bring new ideas, creativity and new ways of doing things. They often feel forgotten among the others and live in isolation”.
– Statement of a participant at a Youth Network in November 2015 during the Brainstorming activity
The Youth Committee was created in 2001 and its members do everything in their power to promote the opinion and concerns of young people at the FIQ. They also want to encourage mobilization and activism in the next generation in health. To do this, the committee gathers, informs and connects with young people through its Network which began in 2009, bulletin and Facebook page.
Issues and priorities
Havoc caused by the health reform
The vast reform of the health and social services network started in the fall of 2014 by the Minister of Health, combined with austerity measures, influenced the Youth Committee’s activities right from the start. In reality, the repercussions of the cutbacks and the major havoc from this reform existed throughout the mandate of the current committee and had a real impact on the healthcare professionals age 30 and younger. In turn, they have become a priority for the Youth Committee.
The place of young people at the FIQ
At a Special Federal Council in January 2015, dealing with the effects of Bill 10 on our internal structures in particular, the Youth Committee was given the responsibility of analyzing the place of the youth at the FIQ. This analysis had a double objective: to draw up a portrait of the place of the young healthcare professionals age 30 and younger at the FIQ and then raise awareness in the organization and delegation on the importance of making a place for the young union representatives in the new local and provincial structures. The Youth Committee presented the results of their work at the Federal Council in June 2016.
The following main findings emerged:
- Few young healthcare professionals age thirty and younger are present at the different levels of the organization, while they represented nearly 25% of the members of the FIQ in 2016.
- Few are represented on the executive committees of the unions affiliated to the FIQ and there are virtually none on the different committees of the Federation.
- Few unions have a Youth Committee in their institution.
Asking the Youth Committee at the FIQ to support the setting up of a youth committee at the local level, inviting guest speakers dealing with the reality of youth at the decision-making bodies of the Federation, giving an abridged version of union life training to the participants who register for a Network for the first time and rethinking the formula for local general assemblies are only some of the possible solutions suggested by the Youth Committee to better hear the voice of young healthcare professionals. It must be pointed out that there is still a lot to do so that the next generation take their place at the different levels of our organization.
Importance of youth networks
The youth networks are a very important place for networking. This discussion forum is crucial, as it allows young healthcare professionals to get together to discuss union and social issues that affect them. Four networks took place during the last mandate, each one with a major theme linked to the experiences and needs expressed by young healthcare professionals. It is interesting to note that at each Youth Network, nearly half the participants were having contact with the FIQ for the first time. They are often not part of their local team. Therefore, we must continue to take this opportunity to establish contact with our next generation and fuel their desire to get more involved and becomes future leaders.
The last issue that the Youth Committee worked on is the age requirement to be considered “young” at the FIQ, the limit set at age 30 since the committee was created. According to the analysis, young healthcare professionals made up a quarter of the members of the FIQ in 2016, but few were present at the different levels of the organization. Bill 10 and its impact on union structures (fewer larger institutions) is an additional obstacle. The risk that the number of youth age 30 and younger will decrease in these new structures is very real. And, the variety of training paths also ensures that new professionals begin later. Because of these reasons, the Youth Committee is recommending to the Executive Committee of the Federation to raise the age of participation: age 35 and younger for the Youth Network and age 34 and younger for the Provincial Youth Committee for the four years of their mandate. The Committee hopes that the members elected remain representative of the youth age 35 and younger; the proposed age limit will mean that the members will not sit for too long after age 35. This does not apply to the context of the Youth Network, because it is an intermittent event. The Youth Committee is convinced that despite this increase in the age limit, the younger healthcare professionals will feel at home and take their rightful place.
Over the last three years, the Youth Committee carried out a series of actions and thus succeeded in carrying out their mandate effectively, despite a clearly unfavorable external environment:
- The members of the Youth Committee were involved in activities where they promoted the FIQ and its young healthcare professionals: in a presentation at the SIDIEFF symposium, for students at Laval University or at meetings in the health institutions.
- The Committee organized four Youth Networks on austerity, work-family-personal life balance, unionism and the environment.
- The Network lunches were organized to increase the settings for hearing the voice of the young healthcare professionals at the FIQ and address specific topics elsewhere than in the networks.
- The Youth Committee participated in the World Social Forum in Montréal and the Peoples’ Social Forum in Ottawa. Those meetings fuel the reflection on the global issues and are an opportunity to spend time with people from different backgrounds.
- The participation at the networks of other committees of the FIQ allows the members of the Youth Committee to have a global vision of the concerns and issues conveyed by the entire organization.
- Lastly, the Youth Committee is proud to have been able to present the results of its work and analysis on the place of young people at the FIQ to the delegates at the Federal Council in June 2016. The Youth Committee is aware that this is a first step; for the voice of young healthcare professionals to be heard at all levels of the organization, the members of the next committee must continue the work already well underway.
Looking to the future
An analysis of the actions taken since 2014 allows us to have a positive assessment of the contribution of the FIQ Youth Committee. Fortified by this experience, the members of the committee have reflected on future prospects likely to support the next Youth Committee in its mandate. The report on the place of young people at the FIQ has resulted in putting the findings and solutions on the table in order to encourage a greater extension of the influence of the people age 30 and younger in our organization, taking into account the number of union reps and the space given to the issues that directly concern them.
Several recommendations remain to be operationalized:
- A revision of the Guide to set up a Youth Commit
- Setting up an abridged training session called “Introduction to Union Life” to be presented the day before networks for new union representatives (in collaboration with the Education-Animation Service).
- Strengthening ties with the other standing committees of the Federation; the “youth” issues are transversal and should be able to be discussed at the same time as status of women, occupational health and safety and education-animation issues.
- Working in concert with the local executives and local youth committees of the institutions in order to encourage the greatest number of youth committees possible and increase their influence within the Federation.
- The committee also identified improvement of the communication with the members as a top priority in the future, with the following objectives:
- Stress the frequency of communications with the members, (for example by a Youth Facebook page)
- Increase the visibility of the committee with the delegates (booth at meetings or networking events).
- Give more scope to the dissemination of information conveyed in the networks (formal presentation by the young participants to their union or a TRAC meeting) to spread the subjects that affect young people throughout the organization.
One of these subjects “Environment: It’s time to speak up” was a real revelation at the Youth Network in the spring of 2017. In fact, it was a great shock for the young healthcare professionals when they made the connection between a deteriorating environment, climate change and the major effects on the health of the population. This Network affirmed that the FIQ has a major social and political role to play in environmental matters and that it must undertake actions now. The members of the Youth Committee are aware of the importance of this issue for the FIQ and is eager to continue to make a contribution.
In concluding this report, the Youth Committee wants to point out that the whole mechanical structure exists at the FIQ to support youth activism. All that remains is to adjust a few gears to truly drive young people, their vision, causes and priorities, reflecting their aspirations!
The Provincial Youth Committee thought about the eligibility age and came to the following conclusions:
- According to the findings from the analysis, notably that the young healthcare professionals at the FIQ under age 30 represented nearly 25% of the members in 2016, but that few participate at the different levels of the organization;
- The union structure of the FIQ has undergone dramatic change in 2016-2017 and that forces new challenges in terms of recruitment of young union representatives;
- Increasing the age of eligibility for the FIQ Youth Committee and Youth Network is likely to further the achievement of the objectives of the FIQ Youth Committee mandate;
- Several unions affiliated to the FIQ have already raised the eligibility age for local youth committees;
- However, the Youth Committee would like the members of the Provincial Youth Committee to remain representative of young people age 35 and younger.
That the eligibility for positions on the Provincial Youth Committee be age 35 and younger, for the four years of their mandate.
That participation at the Youth Network be extended to members age 35 and younger.
Status of Women Committee
Members of the committee
Claire Alarie (October 2016)/Amélie Barrette (February 2017)
Caroline Marie Flageol
Nancy Moss (February 2015)/ Lucie Ménard (December 2016)/Caroline Rioux
Annie Pinard (September 2015)/Émilie Racine
The FIQ represents 90% of women. The committee ensures that the status of women is present in all the files and interventions of the FIQ and ensures this by making interventions at decision- making bodies. It ensures that the status of women files are close to the reality of the healthcare professionals that the FIQ represents. It has an information, awareness-raising and representation role. Therefore, it must know the concerns of the union reps in order to better reflect on them. It wants women’s issues to cross all lines and affect all the sectors/services and committees.
Five meetings of the Women’s Network have been held since the last Convention, and the following topics were addressed:
- For equality and against austerity (October 2014)
- Union democracy and the influence of women at the FIQ (January 2015)
- Being empowered: strategy, solidarity, action (October 2015)
- Le Chœur des femmes (Women’s Chorus) (October 2016)
- Taking a stand with concrete actions (April 2017)
There were eight Women’s Network lunches held during the Federal Councils. A few of the themes follow:
- HeForShe, UNO-WOMEN campaign to involve men in equality*
- Presentation of the committee’s mission
- Questions about mixed lunches
- Myths about equality between women and men with Pascale Navarro
- Reflection on the culture of rape*
- For an opportunity on the place of women at the FIQ
- Family-work-study balance and union activism…
(*lunches included male delegates)
The delegates have shown great interest in the Network lunches, in particular the one in December 2016, where there were 175 registered.
Obviously, the commemoration of December 6 has to be added to the Federal Councils:
- Distribution of a #NeitherViolenceOrSilence #FIQSante sticker to the delegation (2014)
- Panel on the necessity of the delegates taking their place as women (2015)
- Committee members, dressed in black, call on everyone to join in fighting violence against women and to sign a petition in support of Indigenous women in Val-d’Or in their demands for a commission of inquiry (2016)
Feminism is a movement of social change and the committee is involved in this movement in several ways:
The Intersyndicale des femmes
Once a year, we have a meeting with all the status of women committees to reflect on a theme. The unions participating are the APTS, CSD, CSQ, SFPQ and SPGQ. This year, they celebrated the 40th anniversary of the Intersyndicale des femmes together, under the theme, 40 years of solidarity and fighting for equality.
March 8 activities
The activities for March 8 are marked in different ways in many of the institutions. The committee develops the FIQ tools that accompany the poster and the stickers made by the Collectif 8 mars. The themes over the last few years were:
- Keys within everyone’s reach (2014)
- Women on the march for equality: standing together against austerity (2015)
- Call on all to be heard (2016)
As part of March 8, 2016, the committee worked on developing a questionnaire that was sent to the affiliated unions to highlight the reasons why it is important to be heard as women and to develop a portrait of what could encourage members to do more. The response rate was impressive. In fact 1,386 members participated. The committee wants to point out this high participation rate and thank the members and the union representatives for their collaboration.
- No limits on equality (2017)
Fédération des femmes du Québec (FFQ)
Two members of the committee can take turns attending the Annual General Assembly of the FFQ. We feel it is important to remind you of the mission of this body. It is a feminist organization that works on developing women’s autonomy and recognizing all their contributions to society. However, it is in a precarious situation due to the federal and provincial governments’ cuts.
World March of Women
The committee, joined by several activists of the Women’s Network, participated in the World March of Women, a mobilization that took place in Trois-Rivières, in October 2015 under the theme Libérons nos corps, notre terre et nos territoires (Liberate our bodies, our world and our territories).
Lastly, we attended the Women’s Summit, held in March 2016. More than 1,000 women from different organizations and unions participated in this event, including some of the FIQ union representatives. The objective was to raise the issue of the presence of women in political institutions by demanding concrete commitments from the political parties. Several workshops were offered, including one on women and entrepreneurship. One of the speaker’s sentences had a particular impact on the members of the committee: “Where some see a risk, they see human potential”. That quote motivates the members of the committee to continue to be involved.
An important file for the committee is family-work-study balance. The platform, prepared by the Coalition, in which the FIQ is a member, was presented to the Federal Council of March 2016 and adopted unanimously.
We would like to bring to your attention that the committee has gone through significant changes in consultants that the members of the committee had to adapt to. This situation brought certain instability to the committee, as well as to the follow-up of the files.
In closing, our involvement in this committee has allowed us to develop greater autonomy and a feminist analysis on all the subjects. It has allowed us to better understand gender based analysis, speak up at meetings, have a more pronounced feminist judgment without forgetting focused talking points on the status of women at the FIQ. Since the last Convention, the committee has worked on the involvement of women at the FIQ: this important objective will continue to be one of our priorities in the years ahead. In conclusion, the committee thanks the Status of Women Sector for their excellent work.
Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) and the OHS Networks Report
Michel Mailhot (summer 2015)/Marie-Claude Ouellet (interim)
Members of the committee
Jean-Louis Pelland (April 2016)/Sébastien Simard
In December 1987, when the Fédération des infirmières et infirmiers du Québec (FIIQ), was created, the OHS Sector was developed within the organization and six union representatives were elected for the very first Occupational Health and Safety Committee of the FIQ. One of its main mandates was to help develop the Annual OHS Week, an event that had its 30th edition in 2017.
Year after year, since 1988, the research and development of a theme for OHS Week has been done taking into account the problems that the healthcare professionals have in occupational health and safety and their daily reality. To effectively fulfill their duties, the FIQ OHS Committee holds about ten meetings every year, during which the members:
- discuss OHS problems
- participate in choosing and developing an annual OHS theme
- help develop information tools for the members for the Annual OHS Week activities
- propose means to encourage the local teams’ and members’ participation in the activities held in the different health institutions.
Since the last Convention of the Federation held in 2014, the members have developed four Annual OHS Weeks.
2014 OHS THEME: PREVENTIVE OUTLOOK/TEAM OUTLOOK — Working towards collaborACTION!
With this slogan, the committee chose to highlight the beneficial effects of the team as a protective occupational health and safety factor, because positive and significant social relationships, helping behaviours and social support at work contribute to protecting health.
The 2014 OHS poster represented the healthcare professionals linked to each other and helping each other climb a pyramid of cubes. The FIQ wanted to make the healthcare professionals aware of the beneficial effects of a team. The FIQ flag is proudly lifted at the summit of these blocks, indicating that the members can count on the support of an entire team working in OHS at the Federation. Each cube presents letters forming the word “collaborACTION”. In addition to this poster, a bookmark and reusable bag with the theme were designed along with a brochure explaining the course of an OHS file in 10 steps.
2015 OHS THEME: I am taking a position for my health!
For the 2015 annual week, the committee chose ergonomics and addressed it in three dimensions: physical, cognitive and organisational. Using these three branches of ergonomics raises awareness of the importance of adapting work to the person, as much as possible, to ensure taking care of her health and using all her potential.
This same reflection also inspired the poster for the 2015 OHS Week on which can be seen a healthcare professional standing tall, set in a firm position, making a hand gesture indicating that she has reached her limit. We see a whirlwind of objects that she uses every day around her: chair, clock, dollar signs, electrocardiogram printout that all refer to different components of ergonomics. This spiral is also a symbol of the major havoc we are currently experiencing in the network.
2016 OHS THEME: Code MD: Sounding the alarm
Because moral distress is a form of suffering representing a real danger for health and safety and there are major consequences to it, the committee wanted to focus on the need to acknowledge moral distress and sound a warning. Therefore, it was under the theme, “Code MD –sounding the alarm – Moral Distress — acknowledging the danger” that the 2016 Annual OHS Week was held.
The committee chose a bright-coloured alarm as the visual to illustrate the importance of sounding an alarm when there is a danger to health and safety. The committee wanted to draw attention to the seriousness of this danger of moral distress, but also to the importance of acknowledging it and being protected from it.
2017 OHS THEME: OHS Demystified — Know your rights and your obligations
A recommendation was adopted by the Commissions in December 2016 that the FIQ develop tools to make members more aware of their OHS rights and their right to refuse. Mindful of meeting the delegation’s demands, the committee members took advantage of this and stepped up in order to respond to this demand during the 2017 annual week. So, the theme retained was “OHS Demystified — Know your rights and your obligations”. Four leaflets were developed in the form of frequently asked questions, to answer members’ questions on their rights and their obligations in the right to refuse, protective reassignment of the pregnant or breastfeeding worker, income replacement indemnity as well as influenza and gastroenteritis.
On the 2017 OHS poster, each one of these topics is portrayed in a pictogram highlighted by a magnifying glass. These images are reproduced in each leaflet. The committee opted for a RFID (Radio Frequency Identification Device), card sleeve printed and assembled in Québec.
“L’eSSenTiel” web page
The OHS sub-committee posted an average of six editorials a year since 2014. These editorials were posted on the Federation web page and their purpose is to inform healthcare professionals about various hot occupational health and safety topics likely to interest the members.
PARTICIPATION AT THE ASSTSAS
Lastly, aware of the importance of their role, and to keep their knowledge up-to-date, every year the members participate in the Association paritaire pour la santé et la sécurité du travail du secteur affaires sociales (ASSTSAS) symposium. We want to point out that a member of the FIQ OHS Committee has sat on the board of directors of the ASSTSAS as a director for many years.
NETWORK OF OHS UNION REPRESENTATIVES
Besides the work required for holding the annual OHS Week, the committee suggested holding two meetings of the Network of OHS Union Representatives to the 2014 Convention. The Convention endorsed this suggestion as a pilot project.
Hence, the first Network of OHS Union Representatives, under the theme of “OHS, let’s take up the challenge!” was held in September 2015. For two days, OHS union reps were able to build ties and discuss the problems that exist in their institutions. They were asked to ask themselves about their needs as a union officer for OHS cases and what initiatives to take to maximize the place of OHS. To do this, they participated in various activities, in particular a workshop in a World Café (discussion method) style and on the power of influence.
The second Network was held in October 2016, with the theme “Here, we understand healthcare… and safety at work!”. At this Network, several speakers came to speak to the union reps, notably about the course of an OHS file at the FIQ, how to provide for OHS in a context of major changes and the future of the joint occupational health and safety committee.
As planned, an evaluation was done by the OHS Sector at the end of this pilot project, to present to the 2017 Convention, in order to determine the pertinence of making the Network of OHS Union Representatives permanent. Since the Convention will be held at the end of the year, the delegates at the Federal Council of March 2017 agreed to hold a 3rd edition of the Network of OHS Union Representatives this year.
EVALUATION OF THE OHS NETWORKS
It was proposed and adopted at the 2014 Convention:
- “ That a Network of OHS union representatives be created at the FIQ, within the context of a pilot project, by the time the 2017 FIQ Convention is held;
- That a meeting of the Network of OHS union representatives be held in the fall of 2015 and the fall of 2016;
- That at the end of these two meetings, the OHS Sector will evaluate the participation of the local OHS officers in this activity as well as its importance on the exchanges of information and knowledge linked to the issues in the field of occupational health and safety, the pooling of the local OHS problems and interventions and on the use and dissemination of the tools produced within the context of the annual OHS themes of the FIQ;
- That this evaluation is shared with the delegation at the 2017 FIQ Convention in order to determine the relevancy of making the Network of OHS union representatives permanent and to specify the formula and the frequency of meetings, if applicable;
- That the composition of the Network of OHS union representatives be modeled on that of the FIQ Women’s Network.”
This evaluation must be done on four main aspects:
- the participation of local OJHS officers in the Networks;
- the impact on the exchanges of information and knowledge linked to the issues affecting occupational health and safety;
- the pooling of the local OHS problems and interventions;
- the local adoption and dissemination of tools produced for the FIQ’s annual OHS themes.
Therefore, after each Network, the OHS representatives were invited to complete an evaluation on several aspects of the Network. The OHS Committee was able to have an overview of these two Networks by compiling these evaluations.
1. PARTICIPATION OF THE LOCAL OHS REPRESENTATIVES IN THE NETWORKS’ ACTIVITIES
The rate of participation has proven to be excellent as more than 100 union reps participated at each one of the Networks. They came from different settings (EPC, CISSS, CIUSSS etc.) and different regions of Québec.
The number of years of OHS experience also varies. This data has certain limits, because the number of years do not necessarily reflect the experience acquired in OHS. The level of OHS activity (meeting with the employer, OHS committee, involvement in the cases, etc.) varies according to many factors: according to the institution, the fact that the collective agreement leaves it to the parties to establish the conditions of representation and functioning of the local joint committee…
Despite this observation, we find that 3/4 of the participants had at least five years of experience and the largest number had less than one year of experience.
This variety of experience means that finding themes and activities that please everyone is a challenge. And indeed, we find a variation in the evaluation of the themes and activities, but, in general, the activities seem to have been liked.
Lastly, we found that several of the union reps were present in order to fill the number of places allowed based on the composition established for the Network, and this, even if they are not responsible for OHS in their institution. So, the objective pursued in creating such a Network is to bring people with common interests together in order to get the best out of these meetings. If the Network becomes permanent, it would be appropriate that the union reps registered are those who specifically look after the occupational health and safety component in their institution, even reduce the number of available places.
2. HAVE THE EXCHANGES OF INFORMATION AND KNOWLEDGE LINKED TO THE ISSUES AFFECTING OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH AND SAFETY HAD AN IMPACT?
Five questions were asked to properly define this dimension:
I liked it a lot
I moderately liked it
|I was able to create ties with OHS representatives from other institutions||
|I feel better equipped to exert my influence on OHS in my institution||
I liked it a lot
I moderately liked it
|I was able to learn more about the different knowledge to consolidate in my practice as an OHS representative||
|I became aware of the power that I have in OHS in the current context of change in the RSSS||
|I feel better equipped to influence my local team on future OHS issues||
The answers obtained lead us to believe that these two Networks have had a positive influence on the motivation and involvement of the OHS representatives in the issues and the importance to give to this component. However, it is difficult to know precisely if this enthusiasm continues in the field.
3. POOLING OF THE LOCAL OHS PROBLEMS AND INTERVENTIONS
I liked it a lot
I moderately liked it
|I was able to learn more about the practices and problems of the union reps from other institutions||
This specific question was not asked after the 2016 Network, but each time the union reps indicated what they liked the most and the least during the Network.
In 2015, the World Café style workshop at the beginning received very positive comments. The union reps also mentioned having liked being able to exchange among themselves and learn about the realities, practices and problems that are different from one place to another.
At the 2016 Network, a few union reps mentioned that they would have liked more exchanges among themselves. Others pointed out that they liked meeting new people and integrating with them.
Lastly, the presentation on the “initiating a reflection on Article 30” the purpose of which was to bring out the problems that the union reps have with the functioning of the local OHS committees, in the new context of huge institutions, received a mixed reception. The fact that this presentation did not apply to all the union reps created some dissatisfaction. We also received comments on the time allotted to this activity not being long enough.
4. LOCAL ADOPTION AND DISSEMINATION OF TOOLS PRODUCED FOR THE FIQ’S ANNUAL OHS THEMES
Although there was a presentation and a workshop on the upcoming OHS Week in 2015, this theme was not addressed in 2016. There were suggestions in 2016 that this theme be addressed at the next Network.
We feel that there was excellent participation in each Network. The union reps liked that the suggestions made in 2015 were taken into account for the 2016 Network. The mixture of learning and exchanges were also liked.
However, the union reps from the English-speaking section would have liked the documents to be translated into English. Others would have liked to have the PowerPoints in paper form in order to take notes.
Altogether, the acknowledgements at the Federal Council in December 2016 and March 2017 indicate that the union reps have liked the Networks a lot.
FIQ OHS Committee support of the Networks
The members of the committee would like to receive the content of the conferences earlier so that they can contribute to the orientations. They want us to consult them more for the reflection on the theme and in the planning of activities. They want to give their opinion on the choice of an activity and the formulas (round table/conference/training or not), and be involved more in the delivery and in the activities. They would like a day of preparation to be held once the content has been developed, in order to be able to assimilate it or make changes as needed.
Report from the OHS Sector
The OHS Sector of the Federation also evaluated the pilot project positively. Their opinion is that an event like the Network of OHS Union Representatives, in addition to providing a very rewarding networking experience, is a good opportunity for contact with the union reps. This allows the political officer and union consultants to better understand the problems, issues and challenges in the field and to use this in the development of files or political representations that belong to the sector. The Network also makes it possible to target, at least in part, the union reps’ needs, as well as the concerns of the FIQ members in occupational health and safety.
Although it feels that the networking part should remain a priority, the sector also believes the network is an interesting place to develop the skills (knowledge, know-how and life skills) of these OHS union reps. This is to some extent complementary to the more traditional training offered by the FIQ. Furthermore, it is for this reason that the sector would have liked to be able to put their report on the Network in a broader reflection on the current offer of training and its eventual revision. Unfortunately, this was not done as the revision of the training has been put on hold.
WHEREAS occupational health and safety is a major issue for healthcare professionals;
WHEREAS the occupational health and safety component needs to exist in the institutions, is included in the offer of service and the consultants involved in the OHS component would be asked to participate;
WHEREAS having a place where occupational health and safety is specifically discussed is relevant and necessary for the OHS union reps so that they can discuss their respective concerns and experiences, gain skills and tools, and together find solutions to the problems that exist in the field;
WHEREAS the positive evaluation of the pilot project.
The Executive Committee recommends:
- That the Network of OHS Union Representatives become permanent and its union reps have leverage over the OHS part of the offer of service.
- That a meeting of the Network of OHS Union Representatives be held annually.
- That involvement in occupational health and safety in the institution is a condition for the union reps to participate in the Network of OHS Union Representatives.
Members of the committee
Michel Desautels (October 2016)/Natalie Grenier
Elected at the 2014 Convention, the members of the Education-Animation Committee (EAC) first participated in the training offered to all members of standing committees. This training is intended to be participative and covers exchanges and work between committees, in addition to the initial mandate which is their understanding of their role within the Federation.
Composition and context
The Committee has four members and a union consultant and political officer for the Education-Animation Service. During this last mandate, the committee needed the substitute member who participated in a significant and regular manner in the various committee activities, filling long-term absences.
During the mandate, the voting and raiding periods were elevated to the top of the priorities and the members of the EAC dug in with a lot of energy. The regular calendar of activities had to be adapted and agendas were even busier due to its members being in the field, but the Committee was able to meet 12 times.
The EAC action plan:
- Make the EAC more visible;
- Encourage dialogue between union reps;
- Participate in a dynamic manner at the meetings of the Federation;
- Talk about the union experience during “Introduction to Union Life (IUL)” training sessions and participate in the updating and design of training sessions.
The Education-Animation Committee continued its popular “EAC minutes” during the meetings. The “energizers” led the delegates to music to get them to move, since they often sit for long hours. In addition, short videos were also shown, mostly on the theme of austerity, to inform and make the delegation aware. A song was even written and sung by the EAC on this same theme.
As part of the data collection for the overhaul of the “New Grievance Agent” training session, a survey was distributed to grievance agents with less than two years of experience, at a Federal Council. The members of the committee held a booth to distribute and collect this survey. A “5 à 7” was then organized for gathering comments from these grievance agents, so that the new version of this training is in line with their expectations.
The Committee also organized karaoke evenings three times during their mandate. The objective was for delegates from different regions to fraternize, relax and exchange among themselves, and these evenings were very popular.
In anticipation of the voting period, the EAC designed and even played out a series of four sketches, aimed at sharing useful arguments for this period with the delegates in a fun way. These short scenes were presented at different times during the Federal Council in Gatineau. Moreover, the Youth Committee used these same texts and in turn played them out at a Youth Network.
The members of the EAC also talked about and shared their experiences as union reps on a FIQ committee with new union reps during an IUL training sessions. A member of the committee even attended this training session to refresh her memory, having followed it several years ago and to ensure that it still meets the members’ and union reps’ expectations.
Moreover, three members of the EAC participated in the meetings of the Women’s Network and two other members in the work of the Evaluation of Publications Committee. The members of the EAC also lent a helping hand to the Commissions at a Federal Council. During this mandate, the EAC, as always, showed creativity and contributed its energy and dynamism to union life at the FIQ.
Orientations and perspectives
Over the last mandates of the committee, the EAC was particularly visible at the FIQ, in particular at meetings, thus achieving this objective of its action plan. This success is not foreign to the members who have had several successive mandates, thus ensuring continuity and the organization of a varied range of activities. After three and one-half years of mandate, the EAC finds that it has invested well in the animation component and that it is high time to develop the education component, with the same attention and ingenuity.
The work of the EAC is very collaborative, as much for the content as the ways of sharing it. This collaboration can be implemented with the union reps (for the training) and various sectors and services.
The cancelation of certain activities organized at Federal Councils was not done lightly but due to logistical issues and changes to the agenda linked to the context. An annual planning of certain activities as well as focusing on current events would probably reduce these cancelations. Especially since a variety of educational activities have already been foreseen by the EAC and it is not for a lack of ideas (invitation of a progressive research group [IRIS, for example] as lunches, suppers, “5 à 7” showing films, discussions or whatever the EAC agrees on).
Therefore, the EAC suggests further developing its education component, first by holding an education activity at least once a year during a decision-making meeting, directly related to current events and in collaboration with other sectors and services.
Evaluation of Publications Committee
Members of the committee
Status of Women Committee
Annie Pinard (end of mandate: December 2016)/Émilie Racine
Isabelle Bouchard (December 2016)/Shany St-Amand
Occupational Health and Safety Committee
Patrice Dulmaine (June 2017)
The mandate of the Evaluation of Publications Committee is to ensure that the FIQ publications for the members are accessible and include the reality of the healthcare professionals. The committee is composed of eight union representatives from the standing committees of the Federation (two members per committee) as well as a political officer and a union consultant from the Communication-Information-Web-Translation Service of the Federation.
The main objective of the committee is to evaluate certain publications produced by the FIQ and to analyze them, using pre-established criteria. The Communication-Information-Web-Translation Service makes the necessary improvements, as needed. The service may also present a summary to the Executive Committee of the Federation and propose changes to certain publications when deemed appropriate.
The publications evaluated
Since the last Convention in June 2014, two meetings of the committee have taken place, one on June 19, 2015 in Drummondville, and another one on June 7, 2017 during the Federal Council in Lévis. There were no meetings of the committee in 2016 because the service was extremely busy with the two major priorities of the organization, the provincial negotiations and the union allegiance voting period resulting from Bill 10.
Hereafter is a list of the publications that were evaluated:
June 19, 2015
- FIQ en Action post-Convention, Vol. 27, No. 4, April 2014
- FIQ en Action, Vol. 27, No. 9, December 2014
- FIQ en Action, Vol. 28, No. 3, March 2015
- FIQ Special Report Licensed Practical Nurse, Vol. 5, No. 2, December 2013
- Bulletin du Réseau des femmes, Vol. 12, No. 1, January 2015 (online edition)
- Bulletin du Réseau des jeunes, Vol. 6, No. 1, November 2014 (online edition)
- Health Month 2014 (poster, lunch bag, web microsite)
- Health Month 2015 (poster, video, web microsite)
- Annual OHS Week 2013 (poster, Essentiel journal, coffee mug)
- Annual OHS Week 2014 (poster, brochure, bookmark, reuseable bag)
- Negotiations 2015 (Theme and visual, poster, lab coat, Vincent Vallières ads and Une chance qu’on s’a, web microsite, video “Responsible Solutions”)
- “A Safe Maternity Experience/Parental Leaves” brochure
- “Towards Well-Being at Work – A Policy for Fighting Against Violence” brochure
- “Bill 10 and we are mobilizing to preserve our working conditions” leaflet
- Website of the FIQ
- Social media of the FIQ (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, “Healthcare Hell”, “La FIQ, c’est nous!”)
- FIQ Express
- Web pages for the Youth Committee, Status of Women and OHS
June 7, 2017
- FIQ Special Report on Safe Care, Vol. 7, No. 1, December 2016
- Bulletin du Réseau des femmes, Vol. 13, No. 1, November 2016
- Bulletin du Réseau des militantes en SST, Vol. 2, No. 2, October 2016
- Overtime leaflet, January 2017
- New website of the FIQ
- Health Month 2017 “You are a strength, a stability!”
- “Our Reserved Activities” poster and brochure
The main findings and improvements made
The committee is generally satisfied with all the publications produced by the service, particularly the quality of the writing, popularization of the themes addressed and choice of graphic design. We particularly liked the FIQ Special Report on Safe Care which allowed the members to learn more about a subject that concerns them.
We are also satisfied with the FIQ en Action publication. We suggest that only blue be used in this publication, because that is the colour identified with the Federation. Green was used for the pre and post 2014 Convention editions.
The committee liked the concepts developed by the service for Health Month. However, there is little information on the web site of the FIQ for the 2014 and 2015 campaigns. We suggested putting more Health Month content on the web site to promote the work of the healthcare professionals. Our comments on this were taken into account for the 2017 campaign on the new web site. The committee also liked the “Facebook Live” videos made by the members of the Executive Committee to mark the days of Health Month as well as the “tag” operation on Facebook, which gave our members and Health Month good visibility. We suggested improving the quality of the “Facebook Live” videos to have better sound and more fluid, natural presentations.
The committee was pleased with the themes for Annual OHS Week. The promotional items are always popular with the members. We suggested that the Women’s, Youth and OHS Union Representatives Network bulletins be in easily printable letter form, because they are only available on line. This was done by the service. The committee is also satisfied with the new graphic design for the Women’s Network bulletin making it more dynamic. However, the Network bulletins generate few online “cliques”. We thought about other forms that the content of the Networks could take — news published on the web site, short articles on the sites of the committees, posted on Facebook (videos, photos, etc.) during the Networks… An electronic newsletter like the FIQ Express could also be disseminated. These avenues will be evaluated by the service.
The major campaign of the FIQ during the provincial negotiations should also be pointed out: “That’s enough. Caring for patients come first”. We were very pleased with this campaign, the message being clear, the visual image eye-catching and the ads compelling. It all reflected a positive message and a nice image of the healthcare professionals. The Federation was certainly visible during the period of negotiations and knew how to play its role of influence.
Lastly, the committee is satisfied and excited by the new web site of the FIQ. Although at the time of its evaluation, it was still a work in progress and there was content to be added, we commend the work done by the service. The new site is very nice, eye-catching, it is a lot easier to find information on it and it is now configured for telephones and tablets. We suggested adding a “Be an activist at the FIQ” section to provide information for the members who want to be more involved by becoming union representatives and thus encourage greater mobilization of the members.
Shift to the web for publications
The service told us they are reflecting on the dissemination of its printed and online publications to the members. The pertinence of printed or PDF format for downloading publications, as well as a new web platform that produces the publications in a web content were evaluated by the service. We are aware that in an era of new technologies where information circulates quickly, the service must evaluate other communication tools and dissemination of information to our members, all of this also with a concern for the environment and a reduction in printing costs.
The service is also able to analyze the user habits on the web site of the FIQ. This is another interesting form of evaluation of online publications that allows the service to adjust its methods of communication, if applicable.
A new evaluation formula
Since the committee was created in 2005, all the publications — and their evaluation grid — were sent a few weeks before the meeting, during which the members shared their comments and suggestions. This functioning turned out to not be very efficient: the process was long and tedious and the delays made the evaluation less accurate. In March 2017, a new formula was adopted: when a publication is published by the service, we receive a short electronic questionnaire in the weeks that follow. Then, the service organizes a meeting of the committee during the decision-making meetings of the Federation, as a 5 à 7 discussion for example, to discuss the publications that have received a lower score and comments.
Implemented as a trial in the spring of 2017, this formula has been greatly appreciated by the committee. Therefore, we recommend that this formula continue for the next mandate of the committee. We have also discussed with the service the possibility of enlarging the online evaluation survey to the affiliated unions and members to give them the chance to comment on the publications of the FIQ.
In conclusion, the members of the Evaluation of Publications Committee believe that it is important, as union representatives, to have a good knowledge of the reality of the members, in order to be able to evaluate the publications that the FIQ produces. We are happy to have a place to do it!
Members of the committee
Renald Parent (August 2015)/Danielle Deguire
Lucie Lachambre-Girard (October 2016)/Lyne Guerra
Huguette Lajeunesse (August 2016)/Nancy Langlais
First, it must be specified that there have been a lot of changes on the Election Committee since the 2014 Convention. Three members had to leave the committee for different reasons after the elections in 2014. The Federation called on the substitutes and organized an election in December 2016 to fill the vacant positions.
Nevertheless, the Election Committee met five times since the last Convention, for a total of 7 days of work. The meetings were on the overview of the last Convention, organization of two elections and modification of the election policy in accordance with the changes made to the Constitution and Bylaws of the FIQ.
Two elections were held during the mandate of this committee: a position of respiratory therapist vice-president on the Executive Committee of the FIQ in December 2015 as well as elections to the standing committees in December 2016.
Using electronic voting
This mandate was marked by the use of electronic voting. Electronic voting was officially used for the first time at the 2014 Convention, after a successful experience at the Special Federal Council in February, 2014. With the goal of maintaining quiet in the meeting room, the organizing committee for the 2014 Convention proposed to the Election Committee to begin the vote at registration. Despite the need for certain adjustments, it went well. For a second time, elections of the members of the Executive Committee of the Federation and standing committees were held at the same time, that is, the delegates went to the polling booth only once. These ways of doing things significantly increase the efficiency of the election process during the Convention and thanks to electronic voting, the results are known quite quickly. It is easy for the candidates to consult them, and it leaves little room for any doubt of their validity. After two successful experiences, the delegation now trusts this method.
The conditions for applying the election policy have been generally well respected. However, that is not the case for the posting policy in the meeting room. The staff have had to remove posters that were not hung with the proper adhesive or posted in prohibited areas.
The delegation has once again spoken about the overabundance of paper from the candidates to support their candidacy. It is important that the candidates pay particular attention to this aspect when they choose methods to promote their candidacy.
The Election Committee was also busy revising the election policy to make it comply with electronic voting, but also comply with the amendments made to the Constitution and Bylaws of the FIQ following the creation of the Regroupement des FIQ and the FIQP. This new policy was presented to the delegation at the Federal Council in June 2017.
The Election Committee and the team of secretaries at the FIQ who are with them throughout the elections, have developed expertise in organizing the elections. They conduct every step in the preparation and progress of the electoral process with a lot of attention and efficiency. They are a conscientious, dynamic and efficient team. That is an essential key to the success of the electoral process. The support of the information technology team is also essential for the elections to run smoothly.
When this report was written, the FIQ committees had been mobilized by the Convention organizing committee to ask themselves about their place in the organization. The Executive Committee of the Federation also participated in these discussions. More than just symbolic places, the committees of the Federation can be agents of change within the Federation: the dynamics of their actions help illustrate our democratic vitality.
On May 12, 2017, the discussions led the participants, as members of committees of the Federation, to ask themselves about the opportunities, to speak out and be heard by both their peers and the different decision-making bodies of the organization. It is implicit to do a critical report of the committees’ role of influence, in particular their impact on the positons we take and our methods of functioning as a labour organization.
In general, the committees’ capacity for action depends to some extent on the resources at their disposal, the insider information that the members of the committees have access to and their conditions of functioning. The participants looked at these aspects during the discussions in order to come up with a detailed portrait of the place of their committee within the Federation.
In light of these discussions and this report, the Executive Committee is proposing five recommendations to support and help with the development of the committees at the Federation:
WHEREAS according to the findings from the analysis, in particular that young healthcare professionals at the FIQ represent 25% of the members, but few are present at the different levels of the organization;
WHEREAS there has been a dramatic change in the union structure of the FIQ in 2016-2017 and that this creates new challenges in terms of recruiting young union reps;
WHEREAS raising the age of eligibility for the FIQ Youth Committee and Youth Network is likely to further the achievement of the objectives of the mandate of the Provincial Youth Committee;
WHEREAS several unions affiliated to the FIQ have already raised the age of eligibility for local youth committees;
WHEREAS however, the Youth Committee wants the members of the Provincial Youth Committee to remain representative of young people age 35 and younger;
WHEREAS the Provincial Youth Committee has reflected on the age of eligibility and made a recommendation to the Executive Committee of the FIQ;
That the eligibility for positions on the Provincial Youth Committee be age 35 and younger, for the four years of their mandate.
That participation at the Youth Network be extended to members age 35 and younger.
WHEREAS occupational health and safety is a major issue for healthcare professionals;
WHEREAS the occupational health and safety component must exist in the institutions, is included in the offer of service and the union consultants involved in OHS would be invited to participate;
WHEREAS having a place to specifically discuss occupational health and safety is relevant and necessary for the OHS union reps so that they can discuss their respective concerns and experiences, acquire skills and tools, and together, find solutions to the problems in the field;
WHEREAS the positive evaluation of the pilot project.
That the OHS Network of Union Representatives become permanent and its union representatives have leverage over the OHS component in the offer of service.
That a meeting of the OHS Network of Union Representatives be held on an annual basis.
That the participation of union representatives at the OHS Network of Union Representatives be conditional on their involvement in occupational health and safety in their institution.