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April 25, 2016

Download the spring issue of the OFL Action Report.

LETTER FROM PRESIDENT CHRIS BUCKLEY

Sisters and Brothers,

We are less than six months into the first term of your new OFL leadership and I am proud to report that we have made significant strides in the commitments that we made to you back at our November Convention.

Both internally and externally, our movement is moving forward.

On April 14, delegates to the annual Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU) convention voted 93.8 percent in favour of ending their five-year hiatus from Ontario’s house of labour with the historic decision to re-join the OFL. The very next day, OPSEU joined the OFL on the streets in cities and towns across Ontario to lock arms with non-unionized workers in a province-wide campaign for $15 and Fairness.

We proved that together we are stronger.

This spring, the OFL also launched “Make It Fair,” our flagship campaign to mobilize union support for labour law reform alongside the Fight for $15 and Fairness. The campaign is centred on the province’s “Changing Workplaces Review” and gives voice to union demands for across-the-board changes to the Employment Standards Act and the Labour Relations Act that would improve employment standards for every worker and make it easier to join a union.

It is an ambitious and decentralized plan that is designed to empower activists in 16 target communities to drive political pressure from the grass roots to make decent work the law of the land.

We cannot accomplish these objectives alone.

The OFL is reaching out to every union and every local to support the campaign, join the OFL, and affiliate to their local labour council. The labour movement cannot advance unless we are truly committed to the principle of labour solidarity.

The OFL is also reaching out to non-unionized workers, community partners and equity-seeking groups to support their struggles in an effort to earn their trust, build relationships and win their support for our campaign.

In this report, you will see more equity work reported on than any previous OFL report. We have stood in solidarity with Black Lives Matter–Toronto, Indigenous peoples, Muslim people, the Equal Pay Coalition, injured workers and the LGBTQ community. This is a reflection of our collective recognition that these community alliances will be vital to both the immediate success of our labour law campaign and our long-term goal of building a common front against austerity.

I am calling on each and every union member in Ontario to support the Make It Fair campaign and to join the OFL in our fight to change Ontario’s outmoded labour laws. Together, we can raise the bar for every worker and to make every job a pathway out of poverty.

In order to seize this opportunity, we must be united and we must be relentless.

In solidarity,

CHRIS BUCKLEY

President of the Ontario Federation of Labour

COPE 343

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  • Black Lives Matter–Toronto
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  • Labour Relations Act
  • Make It Fair
  • OFL Action Report
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