Since 1974, Quebec Native Women (QNW) has been fighting to promote Native women’s rights in the workplace and at home. Now they will also include the women working in their offices.

The non-profit organization received accreditation for their union with the Centrale des syndicats du Québec (CSQ).

The decision that prompted the employees to unanimously vote for unionization was the proposed relocation of the QNW offices to Wendake. The lack of communication between the employees and the upper management left them feeling sidelined in the process.

QNW president Michele Audette said she was surprised when she heard the accusations of the lack of transparency and stated she “stands strong with what’s going on and that everyone is involved in the process”. The reason for the proposed move to Wendake, Audette said, was to be closer to the many organizations in Quebec City.

The workers were concerned that since many of them had family in or around Kahnawake, they could not go along with the move and the loss of expertise would have been too great for QNW.

QNW communications officer Aurelie Arnaud said, “We’re not asking for the moon, we’re asking to be consulted.”

The actual act of unionizing the employees of QNW falls in line with their mission statement “to protect Aboriginal Women’s rights in the workplace”.