106 N. Cumberland St.
Suite 101
Thunder Bay, ON
CANADA P7A 4M2

Phone: (807) 474-4229
Fax: (807) 475-3128

Union in Politics Committee Executive Board Liaison kariunifor229(at)tbaytel(dot)net The federal election on October 14, 2008 was one of the most important in memory. Many issues that will have a significant impact on working families will be dealt with by the next Parliament - including health care; free trade with Korea, Japan and South America; good pensions; child care; and the environment. The most important decision you can make during an election is to take the time to go to the polls and vote for the candidate or political party that you believe will act in the best interest of you, your family and your community. Dissecting the Canadian political system was the primary focus of the 2008 CAW Women's Conference, with the goal of empowering women to push for change. The conference was held on August 17 -20 at the Family Education Centre in Port Elgin, Ontario. This year's theme was 'Is this what equality looks like?' with workshops geared towards fostering direct involvement in the political system. On the first day, participants examined the functions and the impact different levels of government have on socio-economic policies, especially as they relate to women. The workshop focused on how government decisions affect the every day lives of women -especially on issues of childcare, housing, poverty, all of which disproportionately impact women. The second day was action-oriented where women could choose from eight different workshops meant to hone skills for political engagement -such as lobbying, communicating to the media, public speaking and others -all developed around specific real-life scenarios. The conference also featured a networking session where women formed action groups across different sectors according to their region.