10 May 2011
CPIA launches membership drive
OTTAWA—CPIA, the national industry association, is launching a membership drive to all printers across Canada, president Bob Elliott told PrintCAN. This is in the aftermath of CPIA terminating agreements with provincial associations (FARAs) in December 2010, and asking for a special assessment from its membership in January to help it carry on with business.
CPIA is offering a trial membership for current non-members that comes in at a $200 flat fee covering membership until May 2012. In return members will receive a branding booklet, valued at $225, and a number of selected member benefits.

Until now, printers could only be members of CPIA if they were members of a provincial FARA, at least in those provinces that have provincial associations. Now, membership to CPIA will be direct across the country.

But, as Elliott points out, one of the most important roles for CPIA  is to act as the voice of the industry with the federal government. Various departments call on the association to provide feedback and input to proposals that impact the industry, he said. "Without that voice there is no process to vet federal proposals and policies that affect the industry."

Elliott said his goal is to reach 500 members. "We are on a decent track now at CPIA," Elliott said referring to its recent financial troubles. "If the campaign is successful we should be ok."

In other news, Elliott also confirmed that the CPIA annual conference has been cancelled for this year. "Our focus right now is on the viability and sustainability of CPIA," he said.

Elliott said there was enough response to the assement in January that it will be able to continue operations throughout 2011. At this point two FARAs—Saskatchewan and PGIA (Southern Alberta) are still affiliated with CPIA.

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