HSAA’s refugee family finding their new feet in new home

It’s been eight months since the family of Syrian refugees sponsored by HSAA arrived in Calgary. From the depths of winter, through summer to Labour day, how has the family fared? Ayed Saad, member of HSAA’s Social Justice committee and the chair of the refugee sponsorship ad hoc committee that worked on bringing the family to Alberta, provides this update. Health: The oldest son, now aged six, had an infected tooth when the family arrived in…

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Opinion: Red-tape busters should consider the consequences

Brian Jean says he wants to “reduce job-killing government red tape by 33 per cent, and put in place a one-for-one rule after that where any new regulation has to have one at least as onerous taken away.” Doug Schweitzer says he “would eliminate two existing business regulations for every new business regulation.” I suggest that these two candidates for the leadership of Alberta’s new United Conservative Party (UCP) try saying that in Royal Borough of…

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Bucket List is One Item Shorter After Trip to Ghana

It has long been a dream of mine to do a volunteer project in Africa using my career as a Medical Laboratory Technologist. The year 2017 would be the year to scratch that off my bucket list because, let’s face it, I am not getting any younger. So, with some financial donations from HSAA (the union’s social-justice committee gave $800) and other help, I made this happen. After researching and contacting various volunteer outfits, I contacted…

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Dear EMS Workers and Firefighters and Children’s Hospital Staff

This letter of recognition is for all you. It is hard to express in words the deep gratitude my family feels for the service you provide. But we cannot miss this opportunity to try to express our feelings on paper because I am sure a lot of the work you do might go unnoticed. Maybe not intentionally but just as a function of our hectic lives and the rapid change of circumstances you deal with. Hopefully…

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HSAA Members Join Dragon Boat Races in Lethbridge

Two HSAA members were among the people taking part in the recent Lethbridge Dragon Boat weekend on Henderson Lake. We were part of the Where’s The Finish?! team, made up of 22 women and one man – he was in charge of steering! HSAA’s Social Justice Committee donated $100 to each of us and that money was put toward the team registration fee, practices and uniform shirts. The Dragon Boat Festival was held June 16-18 and…

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Blue Quills teaching the painful truth about residential schools

This article was published in the Summer 2017 edition of Public Interest Alberta’s newsletter, The Advocate. If you want proof that a lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting its shoes on, look no further than residential schools in Canada. For more than 130 years we’ve been hearing the lies about these infamous institutions – that they were created to integrate Indigenous Canadians into the mainstream society, that they were…

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‘I thought I understood’ residential schools, but I did not know

As I sit in front of my computer I find myself struggling to communicate the necessary words to describe my experience with residential schools. The only words I have are … I thought I understood. My uncle, my mother’s brother, was sent to a residential school so I thought I understood. His time at the residential school was never spoken of, so I thought I understood. My uncle, on my wife’s side of the family, taught…

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If Food Be The Path To Member Engagement, Cook On

What’s the recipe for a successful Local Unit event? Good food and generous friends would be some key ingredients. Add a bunch of hungry members and you’ve got a hit! Shauna Cruden, a diagnostic sonographer at the Edson Healthcare Centre and Local Unit chair in Edson, organized a BBQ recently and about 50 members turned out to meet fellow members. The use of a fantastic mobile BBQ was donated by her father, Ted Cruden, branch manager…

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If the Boot Fits – Give it to a Homeless Person

A hard-toed boot may not be as pretty as Cinderella’s glass slipper, but it sure is more useful for homeless people. That’s why EMS members of HSAA recently donated 71 pairs of used (but still useful) work boots to Homeless Connect Edmonton, which aims to help people experiencing or at risk of homelessness find paths out of their difficult situation. “EMS workers get boot chits so they can get new boots every year. It’s important for…

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HSAA Family Walks to Cure diabetes

Photo (above): Brooklyn and Jeffrey Slingerland were among the walkers in Lethbridge who raised more than $12,000 for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. On May 27, 2017, our family joined about 200 other walkers at Nicholas Sheran park in Lethbridge for the JDRF (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) Walk to Cure Diabetes. Our daughter Brooklyn was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in November 2015, when she was eight years old. Since then we have been actively involved…

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