Saskatoon, Sask. – October 28, 2017 – With the leadership race for Saskatchewan’s New Democratic Party (NDP) now underway, UFCW Canada Local 1400 – the largest private sector union in the province – and the UFCW Saskatchewan Provincial Council recently endorsed Ryan Meili for leader of the party.
"UFCW is supporting Ryan Meili as the best candidate to change the political climate in Saskatchewan," said Norm Neault, the President of UFCW Canada Local 1400. “We have to tackle the corruption in our province’s political system, and the Wall government’s anti-worker policies need to be addressed with bold thinking and big ideas. In his work in the community, and as the MLA for Saskatoon Meewasin, Ryan has consistently demonstrated his commitment to fighting for equality, fairness, and the needs and aspirations of working people in Saskatchewan,” Neault added.
Meili, who is currently running against Regina Rosemont MLA Trent Wotherspoon in the leadership race, welcomed UFCW’s endorsement.
“UFCW has been a leader in the fight to not just defend the historical gains of workers, but to expand and improve all workers’ rights,” he said. “Strong unions are essential to a healthy society, and UFCW’s fight to raise the minimum wage to $15 would have a powerful and positive impact on many people’s lives. I commit to raising the minimum wage to $15 per hour within the first two years of an NDP government,” Meili added.
“Under the Brad Wall government, workers in Saskatchewan have been under constant attack, and valuable public services and crown corporations have been undermined by the government’s reckless privatization efforts,” said Brother Neault. “By contrast, Ryan Meili is putting forward a number of policies that would help workers and their families finally get ahead, and UFCW believes he is the best candidate for bringing progressive change to Saskatchewan,” he added.
Together, UFCW Canada Local Unions represent more than 8,000 workers in Saskatchewan, including workers at Maple Leaf Foods; Federated Co-op; Ardent Mills; P&H Milling; Prairie Pride; Loblaw; Co-op retail stores; Moose Jaw Safeway; hotels in Moose Jaw, Saskatoon, Prince Albert, and Yorkton; K-BRO Linen Systems; Compass Group; a number of credit unions; the Saskatchewan Science Centre; security guard companies; and Pepsi and Coca-Cola.
The election for the next leader of the Saskatchewan NDP will be held at the party’s leadership convention in March 2018.