CURAC Report: 2013 – Conference and AGM
Short Report on the last CURAC meeting from David Swayne
The College and University Retiree Associations of Canada (CURAC) Conference and Annual General Meeting was held at the Memorial University of Newfoundland in June. A detailed report on the conference can be found on the UGRA website, but a brief summary is presented here.
Talks focused on several topics of interest to retirees: health-care and long-term-care issues, benefits for retirees, and current and future prospects for pensions: their costs before retirement and their sustainability in the face of uncertain economic times. Issues discussed included those arising from the Government of Ontario’s Drummond Report on shrinking the size of the government and from the Morneau Report, which examines the consolidation of all public-sector pensions into a single administration (also linked on the longer CURAC conference and AGM report on the UGRA website).
CURAC is considering more use of regional conferences, which are already being held in Ontario, the Atlantic Provinces and British Columbia.
CURAC affords interaction and exchange of information among retiree/pensioner associations across Canada. Many associations have a memorandum of understanding with their university/college, a practice the UGRA executive is examining this year. Many of the associations are similar in size and complexity. A few are more engaging with their constituents.
CURAC is trying to improve its reach and its influence on public policy on our behalf. Issues of sustainability always bedevil a volunteer organization: costs, continuity, expertise development and maintenance. The conference was appropriately titled “Staying Connected.”