Women of Steel
Unions need women and women need unions. The USW is a leader in developing women activists and recognizing women's issues as workers' issues. Women of Steel gives women in our union the tools and skills we need to fight for and achieve equality and take leadership roles in our workplaces and in our union.
- Tumbler Ridge's Women of Steel A feature by USW District 3 in honour of International Women's Day 2012.
- Alberta Woman of Steel Retires After 32 years as Union Member RED DEER, ALBERTA – When United Steelworkers Local 1-207 member Karen Reay and her fellow workers at the Travelaire Canada travel trailer plant here got word that their operations would be permanently closing in January of this year, the end of an era had suddenly arrived. Karen had worked at the plant way back in 1968 as a teenager and, after having other jobs, getting married and having kids, began a 32-year career at the operation in 1978. She worked in the laminating department all those years, going from 80 cents per hour in 1968 to $20.60 per hour in her final year.
- Northern Manitoba Member Takes on Numerous Roles as Trade Union Activist CRANBERRY PORTAGE, MANITOBA – It’s been not much more than 6 years since Joyce Delaronde-Cable became a United Steelworkers member when she and her fellow employers at the Frontier School District in Northern Manitoba decided to go union. Since that time Sister Delaronde has become one of the USW’s emerging activists in the province. She has served on two bargaining committees, become a local executive board member, has worked on a winning campaign for a federal NDP candidate, worked for an NDP MLA candidate during the last provincial election, has become a union instructor, has gone on an Steelworkers Humanity Fund delegation to Mexico, has attended National and International Women of Steel Conference and has been trained as a USW lobbyist.
- District 3 Woman of Steel Elected as an International Teller KAMLOOPS, BC – Since first becoming a United Steelworkers member in 1994, Sister Elizebeth Shymko has taken on challenge after challenge. Last month she agreed to take on a new challenge – becoming elected as one of five International Tellers in the international union. An International Teller’s job is a key one. Elizebeth and her colleagues will be responsible for ensuring that nomination and electoral procedures for members of the International Executive Board are done in accordance with the International Constitution.
- Saskatchewan Women of Steel Interested in More Active Role in Union (posted 1 August 2006) PRINCE ALBERT, SK – Steelworker women in Saskatchewan Local 1-184 are becoming more active and interested in playing a larger role in their local union, building on a tradition of trade union activism that has sustained the local through good and bad times.
- Mexican Border Towns Provide Woman of Steel with Close-up View of Failing Global Economy COURTENAY, BC – District 3 Woman of Steel Leslie McNabb, a log scaler by trade and a union organizer, got a close-up view of the failing global economy in the southern US and Mexico earlier this year. Sister McNabb joined a group of 20 trade unionists and allies in the environmental and social justice movements to visit the Mexican state of Tijuana and some of its border communities.
- District 3 Women's Committee Sets New Course BURNABY, BC – The United Steelworkers District 3 Women’s Committee has been recently reconstituted to become an increasingly active advocate group for working women in Western Canada.
- Saskatchewan and Manitoba Women of Steel Raise Funds for Worthy Causes: Cancer Research and Women’s Shelter REGINA, SK/WINNIPEG, MB – Two recently held events by Women of Steel in these prairie provincial capitals have highlighted the activism and generosity of United Steelworkers members. In Regina a seven women team consisting of Women of Steel and friends participated in the Cancer Relay for Life event on June 13.
- Ex-IWA Woman’s Committee Chair Takes on a New Role Well-known union activist and Local 1-2171 executive board member Brenda Wagg, former chairperson of the IWA Canada National Women’s Committee, has recently been appointed as co-chair of District 3’s Women’s Committee.
- Winnipeg Women of Steel and Southern Manitoba Area Council says Thanks to Lee Edwards WINNIPEG, MB – A special evening of solidarity was held here on April 11, hosted by the Southern Manitoba Area Council and the Southern Manitoba Women’s Committee. The event, which took place in Club 1919 of the Union Centre, took place when the District 3 Women’s Committee was in town for two days of meetings. It offered the union Sisters an opportunity to give special thanks to USW staff rep Lee Edwards, who is now working out of the district’s Saskatoon office.
- Sister Bonnie Armstrong - From the Prairies to the North of BC Even though Bonnie Armstrong spent her formative years in the predominately anti-union community of Brooks, Alberta, it didn’t take for her long to become an active union member at an IWA-certified sawmill.
- Winnipeg Women of Steel Mark International Women’s Day WINNIPEG, MB – The Southern Manitoba Area Council’s Women’s Committee joined with Sisters from the Canadian Labour Congress and the Manitoba Federation of Labour Women’s Committee for an afternoon of solidarity and sisterhood at the Park Theatre and Movie Café on March 8, International Women’s Day. Steelworker and Women’s Committee chairperson Jen Stuve, from LU 9074-34, reports that the International Women’s Committee “did an awesome job” of hosting two films: North Country, a 2005 feature film that deals with sexual harassment in the workplace, and the Notorious Mrs. Armstrong, a documentary which recounts the story of Helen Armstrong, who was an organizer in the Winnipeg General Strike of 1919.
- District 3 Education Coordinator Elected to IMF A WOMEN OF STEEL has been elected to the executive committee of the 20 million member International Metalworkers Federation (IMF). Sister Carol Landry, education coordinator for our district, is the first-ever Canadian woman elected to such a high IMF position.
- Steelworkers Commemorate International Women’s Day with Anti-Violence Message BURNABY, BC – On Friday United Steelworkers (USW) Western Canada Director Stephen Hunt encouraged all union members and the public to take time to commemorate March 8 – International Women’s Day (IWD). In just three years IWD will celebrate 100 years of activities around the world in the continued struggle for social and economic justice for women of the world. This year Hunt, is joining efforts by the international Steelworkers Union by requesting that USW members in Western Canada sign an online petition organized by the United Nations to add to the UN Trust Fund to End Violence Against Women.
- Northern Manitoba Women of Steel Donate to Women’s Resource Centre FLIN FLON, MB – The Steelworkers Northern Manitoba Area Council’s Women’ Committee in Flin Flon has donated $1,000 to the Women’s Resource Centre, located at 60 Hapnot Street, in the community’s uptown area. The cheque, presented to the centre’s executive director Colleen Arnold, by Local 7975 president Kim Bryson and fellow committee members Karen Rasmussen (LU 9338), June Reed (LU 7975) and Roberta McKinnon (LU 9106), was graciously received. The centre, which operates an office space and women’s shelter in a house, is working towards the purchase and renovation of a second shelter facility in another Flin Flon house.
- District 3 Women of Steel Attend ‘Most Amazing’ Conference BURNABY, BC – Today when thinking about it – it is still hard to fathom. Over 1,000 working women all under one roof! The United Steelworkers International Women of Steel Conference, held for four days in Toronto between September 23-26 of this year, was the largest congregation of women workers in North American history. And District 3 can be especially proud – over 70 women from Western Canada were present – the largest such delegation from any district in the international union.
- Northern Manitoba Woman of Steel is a Leading Activist in Union and Community THOMPSON, MB – Gloria Jacob’s husband Alvin sometimes kids her about being “married to the union.” A former USW Local 6166 committee member himself at Inco Thompson, Brother Jacobs knows full well that union activities are often times demanding. For Sister Jacobs being active in the union has become a way of life. A Steelworkers member for the past 21 years and an activist for over a dozen years, she is supported by both Alvin and her 26-year son Anthony, who also works at what is now CVRD Inco.