Why Unions Matter contest winners | Unions Yeah!

Why Unions Matter contest winners

2020

Briana Lefort, of Whiby, for her visual presentation of how unions help families feel secure. 

Liam Deaton, of Guelph, for his rap submission. 

2019

  • Monica Lung, of Kanata, for her graphic design of Strength in Numbers
  • Christine Zhang, of Calgary, for her dance performance, My Anchor

2018

2017

2016

2015

  • Nadeem Hajee, a retirement home cook in Kitchener, for his a comic strip that shows why Unions Matter to three very different people.
  • Charles Partridge, a social worker in BC, for his short essay on the variety of reasons Why Unions Matter.
  • Nova Scotia's Jenifer Hutt for her short exercise in logic, Do Unions Matter?
  • Lana Hood, a federal government employee in Beausejour, MB, for her autobiographical poem, My Childhood View.
  • Melissa LeBlanc, a 22-year-old sociology student at the University of New Brunswick, for her reminiscence Why Unions Matter.
  • Madison Hill, an Environmental Studies student from the Six Nations Reserve in southern Ontario, for her poem, Why Unions Matter to Me.
  • Raegan Zdunick, an Agriculture and Bioresources student at the University of Saskatchewan, for her essay, Unions and Women.
  • Nicholas LeBlanc, a University of New Brunswick student, for his schematic A Young Person Graphically Organizes Three Ways Unions Matter.
  • Niagara Falls LCBO worker (and OPSEU Local 286 member) Jessica Turgeon for her poem Why Unions Matter.
  • Alexandria Kay, a 17-year-old high school student from Regina, for her poem Unions Do Matter … Looking Thru A Child’s Eyes.
  • Campbellton, NL's, Samantha Budgell for her essay Why Unions Matter, which touches on the range of the ways in which unions empower people to do better for themselves and their communities.
  • Toronto's Vicky Yu for her poem The Working Man, which tells the story of one person who is able to enjoy a stable life because he belongs to a union.

2014

  • Sandra Mountain, a facilitator for kids with disabilities at Douglas College in Burnaby, B.C., by submitting a poem about how important her membership in the B.C. Government and Service Employees Union (BCGEU/NUPGE) is to her as a single mother. Check out her winning entry.
  • Alberta Registered Dietitian Melissa Baker for her short essay, Unions = Job Security = Food Security, about her experience struggling through the Welfare Food Challenge in which she lived for a week with just $26 for groceries.
  • Ottawa labour activist Corinne Baumgarten for Union Style, her fun yet fierce take take on the massive music hit Gangnam Style. Check out her winning entry.
  • Ontario singer Ben Cottrill by submitting a video of a positive protest song called United that he wrote and performed. Check out his winning entry!
  • Journalist Matt Creed by submitting a poem called The Union about the often unrecognized "super-powers" that unions give us. Check out his winning entry!
  • HR graduate Jay Jeworksi by submitting an old photograph and some childhood memories of walking the line with his parents, who were active in CUPW. Check out his winning entry!
  • Grade 10 student Aimee Shannon won her $1,000 prize by submitting a spoken-word poem and uploading it to YouTube. Check out her winning entry!
  • Cathy MacKinnon from PEI was choosen for the Why Unions Matter contest after submitting a poem describing how she came to understand and appreciate the value that unions can play in our lives. You can find Cathy's poem here.

2013

Frank O'Neill submitted a moving letter about life on the picket line after years of loyal work for a multi-national corporation. "Frank's writing shows what these workers have been up against - a multi-billion dollar, multi-national corporation looking for concessions from 45 members in order to institute a global bargaining strategy" said James Clancy, NUPGE National President. You can find Frank's full submission here.

The first winner of the Why Unions Matter contest was nine-year-old Ezra Barrett won us over. "Your poem Why Unions Matter beautifully captures a slice of the good that unions do, from empowering teachers to stand up for themselves and their students to providing your parents a chance to help their friends and co-workers live more secure, content, and productive lives," said NUPGE National President James Clancy. Read Ezra's full poem.