Report from the Executive Director, May 2024

By Hazel Corcoran

Worker Co-op Academy/Mixers/Conference/Lobbying

As we move towards summer, CWCF has many projects underway. I’m excited to announce the recent launch of the third iteration of our Worker Co-op Academy. Four groups are participating in this cohort, with experienced co-op developer Russ Christianson continuing to serve as our lead instructor. Past participants, including The Makehouse and Transform Practice found the Academy an invaluable resource, and I’m confident this time will be no different.

We are also looking forward to making in-person connections with our members through our upcoming mixers in the coming months. We had a great turnout for our screening of the film (R)evolution – le travail est humain at our Toronto event in March and look forward to sharing its exploration of worker co-ops’ inspiring solutions to contemporary issues with our Halifax audience in June. We’ll also bring together our board and members of the local worker co-operative sector in Winnipeg later this month, and stay tuned for details about our planned mixer in Vancouver this September.

These mixers will play a particularly important role this year given that our 2024 Conference will be taking place virtually.  The Conference planning committee is still working on our theme and programming, but thanks to our recent survey, we can do so with insight into the topics with which our members wish to engage. 

CWCF is celebrating last month’s federal budget announcement that sales of conventional businesses to worker co-operatives are eligible for the $10 million capital gains tax exemption accorded to employee ownership trusts, along with other measures.  We are advocating for clarity that worker co-operatives incorporated under provincial legislation would also be included.