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Sessions and workshops

Friday, June 9

2:00 pm Labour History Walking Tour

There is a lot of local labour history in Prince George. Join the BC Labour Heritage Centre on Friday afternoon to explore some of the key sites and stories that are part of our working peoples’ history in the region. This afternoon event will run approximately from 2:00pm to 4:00pm. Bring your walking shoes — part of the afternoon will involve walking the core of the city.

The 4.2-km route is mainly flat, and the tour is estimated to last a maximum 2 hours. We plan 10 stops along the way, visiting historic locations and telling stories of labour battles, politics, racism and tragedy over the past 100 years. We’ll visit the Memorial to Killed and Injured Workers, the Carpenter’s Union Hall, the International Woodworkers of America, and important sites from the 1919 Sympathy Strike, the Relief Camp strikes in 1930s, Charles Sager’s barbershop (racism in the 1920s), the founding of the BCGEU, political divides, Indigenous history, the 1984-1986 Canadian Tire Strike, the Lakeland Mills explosion and the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway.

The tour will be conducted by Dr. George Davison, Chair of the Prince George Heritage Commission and former President of the Federation of Post-Secondary Educators of B.C. (FPSE) along with Donna Sacuta, Executive Director of the B.C. Labour Heritage Centre, who worked for the B.C. Government Employees’ Union (B.C. General Employees’ Union) BCGEU in Prince George from 1979 – 1992.

If you have signed up for this activity but are no longer able to attend, please contact us at bcfed-ea@bcfed.ca to let us know.

7:00 pm Opening Ceremonies and Welcome

Our conference opens with a jam-packed evening of solidarity and celebration, including:

  • a welcome from Lheidli T’enneh ‘Atsiyan Ink’E ‘Atsoo Elders Society president Les Baker
  • an address by BCFED president Sussanne Skidmore
  • a showcase of community organizations including the North Central Labour Council, Red Dress Society, Prince George Pride Society and Stand Up For The North
  • the UHNBC Traditional Drummers

Saturday, June 10

9:30 am Building a Strong Community: Working Together to Solve Growing Social and Economic Challenges

From mill closures to rising food and housing costs, Prince George and the surrounding region have been hit hard by ongoing social and economic challenges. Bringing together labour leaders, community advocates and frontline representatives, this panel will highlight the impacts on the community and, more importantly, how we can ensure that PG and the region comes out stronger from these challenges, leaving no one behind. Moderated by Candis Johnson, Vice President, North Central Labour Council

10:45 am Workplace Mental Health in the Spotlight

Workplace mental health is finally stepping out of the shadows and becoming a priority. We’ll consider the dynamics of mental health in the workplace: Indigenous perspectives, community collective and vicarious trauma, occupational health and safety, and government's perspective. And we'll discuss how we can provide mental health supports for workers.

1:30 pm & 3:15 pm Workshops

Political Organizing: The Why, the Way and the How!

In this workshop we will dig into some of the ways politics affects our lives. We will talk about how unions internally organize members during elections. Additionally, we will cover the various ways to participate on campaigns because there are roles for everyone! And we will end with some practice using a powerful conversational tool that will prepare you to talk to your colleagues and the public about getting out to vote. 

Leadership for Inclusive and Thriving Organizations

There's no one way to lead. From one leader to another, styles and approaches can differ — and leaders often switch approaches depending on circumstances. In this session, we'll look at common leadership approaches for learning organizations, reflect on the kind of leader you are, and help you develop tools for leading in inclusive and inspiring ways.

211 Rapid Training

Explore the challenges working people face every day and learn how you can be a resource to support them when personal and social crises emerge in our lives. This workshop teaches participants how to draw on more than 14,000 community-based programs and services in BC that can help your fellow workers out — sometimes in ways that a Collective Agreement isn't able to (yet).

Be More Than A Bystander

Presented by the BC Centre for Women in the Trades, this workshop equips participants with practical tools and strategies to prevent and intervene in gender-based and other forms of bullying, harassment, and violence in workplaces in the skilled trades industry. Be More Than A Bystander is training and educational program to support organizational and cultural shifts towards more inclusive, safer, and respectful workplaces.

Sunday, June 11

9:30 am When the Right Captures Your School District

Every kid deserves to feel like they belong at our schools. But when School District 57 trustees thanked a speaker for transphobic comments, they sent a terrible message to queer and trans kids throughout the district. It was just one of several disturbing incidents from this newly-elected right-wing board. We'll hear from people organizing on the front lines to restore voices of equity and justice to the district's leadership, and to stand up for Prince George schools — and the kids and teachers who learn and work there.

10:45 am Influencing Change with Workers at the Centre

Whether it is a municipal, provincial or federal election, who we elect makes a difference to our communities. And we have an opportunity to influence policy and who gets elected come election time. We will hear from former candidates and currently elected politicians about why it is important for union activists to get involved in electoral politics.