Public Service Week should be time for celebration, not concern
Thank you MGEU members for the services you continue to provide in difficult times. Please send your name and a photo to be entered into our "Thank You" prize draw (details below).
Jun 15, 2021
National Public Service Week, which takes place this year from June 13 to 19, is a chance to recognize those who are there for us all, day-in and day-out -- including during crises like a pandemic -- through our public service. This year, however, the celebration is dampened by some serious concerns.
“In yesterday’s Winnipeg Free Press, two professors who’ve studied public administration for more than 20 years, expressed their deep concern for public servants, who are under significant strain and facing a drastic decline in morale,” said MGEU President Michelle Gawronsky. “This comes as no surprise to me or our MGEU members, who have continued to show extraordinary dedication and commitment to the citizens of Manitoba during the most trying of times, only to find themselves under-resourced and unappreciated by their employer.”
The two U of M professors (Karine Levasseur and Andrea Rounce) pointed out that public service and citizens all have a role to play in nurturing trust with each other, but it is the public service that is in a profoundly difficult position. At its centre, the public service seeks to serve the public interest, but it is also required to fulfill the directions set out by government – and sometimes, the direction of government is at odds with the public interest.
“In other words,” Gawronsky said, “right now, thousands of MGEU members are working on the frontlines and behind the scenes to provide the public services we all rely on to keep us healthy and safe. But strong public services can only happen with people to deliver them. And a strong public workforce means paying people fairly, ensuring adequate staffing levels, and investing in your people rather than selling off our public assets to private interests.”
This year, Public Service Week is an opportunity for MGEU members to remind Manitobans of what’s at stake.
“As this pandemic has made crystal clear, a strong and sustainable public workforce is key to keeping our communities going through thick and thin,” Gawronsky said. “So this week, we’re asking MGEU members to send us a selfie of themselves at work (or on break, or before their shift, or after work), along with info about the service they provide. This will help us spread the message not just through the editorial pages of the Free Press, but throughout the province.”
Send us a Selfie for a Chance to win an MGEU Prize Package
We’re asking MGEU members to send us a shot of working from home, in the office, out in the field, or in their PPE (if applicable) – as long as they follow all workplace guidelines about smartphone and social media use and avoid including any personal or private workplace information in their photo. You can send your photo via email to firstname.lastname@example.org or direct message it to us on Facebook or Instagram. Please include your full name and where you work in an accompanying message.
Did we mention there will be prizes? Those who send an image will be entered to win one of three “Thank You” MGEU prize packages*, drawn and announced by 4pm on Monday, June 21, 2021.
*Draw is available to MGEU members only. The deadline to submit photos is June 20, 2021 at midnight CST. Three prize packages will be awarded. Please provide your full name when sending an image so we can verify your membership in our database. If contact information is not available in our database, winners will be notified in the way they entered the draw (Facebook/Instagram Messenger or email). By providing an image, you are granting MGEU permission to share the image on its social media feeds or website. Images may also be used to promote the work of MGEU members at the MGEU convention in October 2021.
Update (June 21, 2021):
The draw was held June 21, 2021 and the following MGEU members' names were selected for a prize package:
- Kelly Makasoff
- Andrew Lindsay
- Holly Arthur