I want to end 2016 on a positive note. I want to take a moment to celebrate all the wonderful things that Federation members do every day, all year long.
Beyond the various job descriptions we hold, everything we do as part of this federation moves our province in the direction of greater inclusion, equality, accessibility, dignity, respect, empathy, and understanding.
It is not easy work, but I am constantly amazed and humbled by the ways our members bring people together, step up when needed, and make real, meaningful change in people’s lives.
For centuries, sages and scholars across the world have professed the value of such powerful, meaningful, and lasting acts of caring for each other.
And it may not seem like it, but caring is also a political act. It ignores lines in the sand, and rigid ideologies, and notions of “us” and “them”—it ignores what might divide us and focuses on the simple things we all share and the simple things we all need.
In a time where self-interest, oppression, and hostility towards others seem to be dominating social discourse, I want to remind you that kindness and caring and love are still values cherished by more people than not.
It may be hard to see them through the darkness, but those values will always be a source of light. They bring us together and they make us better.
These are the values that you, our members, live by every day. It’s something wonderful and something worth celebrating and holding on to.