CHARLOTTETOWN, April 10, 2014 /CNW/ - Unifor Atlantic Director Lana Payne was chosen as one of 23 Women of Bold Vision from a long list of distinguished and accomplished nominees. The recognition is meant to highlight Canadian women who have demonstrated great passion and commitment to Canadian society, specifically with regards to women's issues.
"Lana has a deep understanding of the specific issues women face in their workplaces, communities and homes. That understanding, combined with her deep commitment to the rights of women and her powerful leadership have enabled her to create tremendous transformation," said Unifor National President Jerry Dias. "She has helped the labour movement become a more effective agent in the struggle for women's rights - and she is ensuring our union, Unifor, continues to take equality issues seriously."
In honour of the 150th anniversary of the Charlottetown Conference where 23 men gathered to create a bold vision for Canada, a coalition of women's organizations in Prince Edward Island has come together to celebrate the vital role women played and will continue to play in the advancement of our country. Lana Payne was nominated by her fellow Unifor sisters for this special recognition that will bring 23 women together to share their visions for Canada's next 150 years.
"As a trade union leader, feminist and political activist, Lana is always advocating for progressive social change," said Julie White, Director of the Women's Department at Unifor. "Her commitment to building a better world is contagious and Unifor sisters can think of no one better suited to articulate a new vision for Canada than our own Lana Payne."
"This is truly a great honour because it is a recognition of the incredible work by all trade union women, including proud Unifor women, who make a difference every day with their activism, with their passion and with their vision of a better, more equal Canada," said Payne. "This recognition is about them and how women activists are part of leading the way to transform and renew our movement."
Payne has been active in the labour movement for two decades and champions a strong vision for Canada. She found her home as a trade unionist in 1991 and worked for the CAW/FFAW for 17 years. In that time she proudly worked with the women of her union to change the union's structures and constitution thus ensuring women were represented at the union's decision-making tables. In 2008, Payne was elected president of the Newfoundland and Labrador Federation of Labour and in her five years there, the federation made many gains that included changes to the labour code, stronger health and safety laws, minimum wage increases and investments in childcare. She speared-headed the minimum wage campaign that resulted in a 67 per cent increase over a five-year-period for low-paid workers, the vast majority of whom were women workers.
Elected as the Atlantic Regional Director of Unifor in 2013, Payne continues her activism on the local and national stage.
For more information about the Women of Bold Vision Awards visit http://aboldvision.ca.
Unifor was founded Labour Day weekend 2013 when the Canadian Auto Workers and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers unions merged. With more than 300,000 members, Unifor is Canada's largest union in the private sector.
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Shelley Burgoyne, Communications