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There is no denying that this year Canadians have faced a challenge unlike any other in living memory. Every aspect of our lives has been disrupted or altered – our jobs, our families and how we interact with our communities. Many of us have experienced hardship or loss. And while the future is uncertain, it is safe to say that we still have a way to go before we are on the other side of this crisis.
That said, I am grateful that Canada is weathering this pandemic better than many other countries, and that we have done so by working together and supporting each other.
This Labour Day it is important to remember that, for the most part, the people responsible for how we have withstood this crisis are not politicians or wealthy individuals but average Canadians, specifically Canadian workers.
It has been Canadian workers who have steered the country through this pandemic: from the medical professionals and hospital workers saving lives to essential workers ensuring people get the supplies they need to the public servants like yourselves who have helped Canadians access vital services and supports like the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) and other emergency measures.
As your President, I cannot emphasize enough how honoured I am to represent such a committed, hard-working group of professionals who have risen to this challenge beyond all expectations.
I believe it is also important this Labour Day for unionized workers to take a moment to appreciate all that we have accomplished together and to re-commit ourselves to ensuring a better future for all Canadian workers. To continue to weather this challenge going forward, Canadians must do what we have done – stand together. We must ensure that the high-quality public services Canadians rely on are protected; that lost jobs are replaced with good, sustainable ones; that our healthcare system is strengthened and that our social security net is disaster-proofed, so we are better protected in case of a future crisis.
I know that many Canadians are anticipating when we can all go back to normal. But it is my belief that, even in this time of crisis, we can take steps not backward but forward, to a new normal – and a better future for all of us.
Dany Richard, MBA, CPA, CMA, ICD.D
President and Chair of the Board of Directors