Calgary Area PSAC Human Rights Committee Meeting June 15, 2020 -DRAFT MINUTES

In Attendance:

Kathy Ajram – Chair – UTE

Shanon Hicks – Secretary – CIU

James Huang – Treasurer- CEIU

Lindsey Sparks – PSAC Staff (Regional Office)

Jacqueline Nanali – Guest (Winnipeg HRC)


Draft Minutes

Calgary Area PSAC Human Rights Committee Meeting

June 15, 2020 @ 6:00 PM



Meeting was called to order at - 6:05pm by committee chair. The committee approved the adoption of the agenda and approved meeting minutes from May’s meeting.

Report from Chair:

Things are very different for most of our membership with Covid and working from home. It’s been hard to engage in the normal activities we thrive on because of all the unknowns we are all dealing with during this time.. We talked about a webinar, we don’t know if the webinar will work but we will try to come up with something else to show solidarity. Many  members are struggling with mental health and stress because they don’t know if they will have a job, and the work/life balance situation they are in isn’t conducive to their wellbeing.. PSACs webinars are working well to keep members engaged and informed, and I think they have been helpful to many.

Report from Treasurer:

Last month we discussed looking at other banks because of the fees at Scotiabank.  ATB seems to be the best solution.  ATB offers 15 transactions a month for free.  Bank statements are current.  Account balance is $317.70.  Treasurer has not changed signing authority as of yet. 

Old Business:

  • Bank account - James said ATB seems to be the best option.  No others seem to have free bank accounts.  Shanon to follow up - contact Scotiabank to find out what is required to close the account.

New Business:

  • National Indigenous History Month  webinar - Jackie updated - wasn’t able to reach anyone.  She did get a recommendation for Kevin Chief, we don’t know if he’ll be available. Shanon also reached out to a few organizations who did not respond, as they are likely busy during this time. The local Friendship Centre in Calgary had a month long calendar with different events and activities taking place in a virtual way which was open to all. The committee decided although a good idea, project would be cancelled for the time being due to timing issues.
  • Signs of solidarity - Kathy - one of the things that we can look at is to address the BLM movement. Some locals have been asking if PSAC had anything planned surrounding the importance of systemic racism and the black lives matter movements and although there are the statements available on the website, I’d like to propose we take it a step further.. There are statistics showing people who identify as Indigenous and black are assaulted more often than others.  Kathy suggested a call out to the Prairie Region, lighting a candle (virtually), show us your sign of solidarity and send us a picture or poster (electronically), if enough feedback is received, we could do a collage.  Maybe we can get some stories, if they are suffering from systemic harassment. 

Jackie - I think it’s a great idea.  

Lindsay - we can get the idea out to the region as spirited by Calgary and Winnipeg HRCs.  

Kathy - Should have a draft Wednesday and then she can do any changes, she’d get them done and then have it sent out through the regional office. . 

Next meeting - we will see what happens in July and we may have a meeting in August depending on whether Calgary Pride is a go. So far it appears as through pride will be held in a virtual capacity in Calgary but unofficial at this time.

Meeting adjourned @ 6:40 pm.

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