News Archive

 

OPEN LETTER TO PRIME MINISTER HARPER: Talk to Chief Theresa Spence of the Attawapiskat First Nation

OPEN LETTER TO PRIME MINISTER HARPER: Talk to Chief Theresa Spence of the Attawapiskat First Nation DECEMBER 17, 2012 Dear Prime Minister Harper: On behalf of one million members of the Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) I am calling on you to meet with Chief Theresa Spence of the Attawapiskat First Nation who is engaged […]

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OFL Statement for December 18, 2012 International Migrants Day

OFL STATEMENT December 18, 2012 Canada’s Exploitation of Migrant Workers Lowers the Bar for Every Worker OFL Statement for December 18, 2012 International Migrants Day Only days before the international community celebrates International Migrants Day, Canada’s Conservative government quietly introduced new rules stripping migrant workers of benefits they pay for. On December 10, International Human […]

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Email Your MPP and Ontario’s Political Party Leaders

The Ontario government has been shut down while workers’ rights are under threat and public service cuts are hurting every community. The 2012 Ontario Budget cuts will cost many their jobs and many more their livelihoods while banks and corporations are being allowed to reap record profits at the public expense. This fall, McGuinty’s Liberals […]

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OFL President Sid Ryan to Hunker Down with the Homeless in Sidewalk Sleep-Out to Protest Social Assistance Cuts

 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE December 11, 2012 OFL President Sid Ryan to Hunker Down with the Homeless in Sidewalk Sleep-Out to Protest Social Assistance Cuts (Toronto, Ontario) – OFL Officers Sid Ryan and Irwin Nanda will join poverty activists and people who are homeless in a sidewalk sleep-out at MPP Glen Murray’s Toronto Centre Constituency Office […]

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OFL Statement for December 10, 2012 International Human Rights Day

OFL STATEMENT December 10, 2012 Canada’s Human Rights Reputation is Fast Becoming a Myth OFL Statement for December 10, 2012 International Human Rights Day This year, as the global community recognizes December 10 as International Human Rights Day, many Canadians struggle with a vanishing sense of pride in Canada’s once renowned reputation as a leader […]

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Media Advisory: Community-Labour Coalition joins education worker fight against Bill 115; hosts assembly to challenge cuts to services and rights

For Immediate Release December 6, 2012 Media Advisory: Community-Labour Coalition joins education worker fight against Bill 115; hosts assembly to challenge cuts to services and rights (TORONTO, ON) ─ Hot on the heels of a nationally recognized report exposing Ontario’s growing income inequality, the Ontario Common Front is expecting hundreds to attend a general assembly […]

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OFL Statement for December 6, 2012 National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women

OFL STATEMENT December 5, 2012  Rising Together Against Violence Against Women: OFL Statement for December 6, 2012 National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women As Ontarians gather in cities and towns across the province to remember the women victims of gender-based violence, Ontario’s labour movement is beginning to build for a global […]

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ADVISORY: Cornwall Town Hall Exposes Local Impact of Government Cuts to Services and Democratic Rights

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE December 3, 2012 ADVISORY: Cornwall Town Hall Exposes Local Impact of Government Cuts to Services and Democratic Rights (Cornwall, Ontario) – Outraged at the McGuinty governments’ deep cuts to social programs and the recent attack on the democratic rights of education workers, Cornwall community members will be gathering on the evening of […]

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OFL Statement for International Day of Persons with Disabilities, 2012

OFL STATEMENT December 3, 2012 Ontarians with Disabilities Hit the Hardest by Government Cuts: OFL Statement for International Day of Persons with Disabilities, 2012 December 3 marks the United Nations’ International Day of Persons with Disabilities. According to the UN, persons with disabilities make up 15 percent of the world’s population and a quarter of […]

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Donate to the OFL Jack Layton Memorial Statue: Memorial Progam Available for Download

Help us remember Jack’s contribution to Canada and donate now to a statue in his honour.

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ADVISORY: Windsor Town Hall Exposes Local Impact of Government Cuts to Services and Democratic Rights

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE November 26, 2012 (Windsor, Ontario) – Outraged at the McGuinty governments’ deep cuts to social programs and the recent attack on the democratic rights of education workers, community members from across Windsor will be gathering this evening for a public town hall meeting. The forum will provide an opportunity for local residents […]

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In Memoriam: Cliff Pilkey (July 27, 1922 – November 17, 2012)

A Man of the People Cliff Pilkey (July 27, 1922 – November 17, 2012) Download the OFL’s Cliff Pilkey Memorial Download archival photos of Cliff The funeral service will be held in the Chapel of the Oshawa Funeral Home on Friday, November 23 at 11:00 amwith the interment at Thornton Cemetery. A reception to follow […]

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Honouring Lost Lives, Seeking Justice for the Living: OFL Statement on the Transgender Day of Remembrance, November 20, 2012

OFL STATEMENT November 20,2012 Honouring Lost Lives, Seeking Justice for the Living: OFL Statement on the Transgender Day of Remembrance, November 20, 2012 Since 1999, November 20 has been recognized as the International Transgender Day of Remembrance. It is a day to reflect on the lives of transgendered people who have been killed due to […]

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ADVISORY: Thunder Bay Town Hall Exposes Local Impact of Government Cuts to Services and Democratic Rights

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE November 20, 2012 (Thunder Bay, Ontario) – Outraged at the McGuinty governments’ deep cuts to social programs and the recent attack on the democratic rights of education workers, community members from across Thunder Bay will be gathering this evening for a public town hall meeting. The forum will provide an opportunity for […]

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DOWNLOAD THE CONFERENCE AGENDA: OFL Equity Conference (Nov. 9-11, 2012)

The Ontario Federation of Labour will be hosting an Equity Conference from November 9 to 11 under the theme: “We Are Ontario: Putting Equity Before Austerity.” The event will be opened up to members who belong to the OFL’s many equity-seeking constituencies. Community groups will also be invited to add their voices and experiences to […]

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OFL Launches Democratic and Economic Rights Campaign

Demand good jobs, public services, workers’ rights & the recall of the legislature! The Ontario government has been shut down while worker’s rights are under threat and cuts to jobs and services are hurting every community. It’s time to defend everyone’s democratic and economic rights. Download the campaign flyer here  Jan. 26, 2013: Rally for […]

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Register Now! OFL Women’s Leadership Summit, December 10-12, 2012

OFL Women’s Leadership Summit Kempenfelt Conference Centre December 10-12, 2012 Dear Sisters and Brothers: I am writing to invite you to identify and sponsor Sisters from your Union to attend our upcoming OFL Women’s Leadership Summit.   This is a unique opportunity for women in your union to come together with like-minded trade union and community […]

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OPEN LETTER TO PREMIER: Labour Ends Talks with Government; Refuses to be Political Pawn

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE October 24, 2012 Dear Premier McGuinty, Two weeks ago, Ontario’s labour leaders approached your government, in a gesture of good will, with the end goal of supporting local settlements while circumventing draconian legislation like Bill 115. Unfortunately, your government undermined these discussions before they could get started. First, your crass political decision […]

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Labour Calls Prorogation an Affront to Democratic Rights

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE October 19, 2012 (Toronto, ON) — Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) President Sid Ryan today debunked media speculation that the labour movement was privy to Premier Dalton McGuinty’s decision to prorogue the Ontario Legislature. “Let me set the record straight once and for all: the labour movement played no part in the […]

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Labour Movement Releases Mental Injury Tool Kit on World Mental Health Day

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE October 9, 2012 (Toronto, ON) — The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) has banded together with several provincial labour unions and the Occupational Health Clinics for Ontario Workers (OHCOW) to launch a Mental Injury Tool Kit on October 10, 2012, in recognition of World Mental Health Day. This tool kit is part […]

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In Memoriam: Charles Roach (Activist+Artist+Musician+Lawyer+Revolutionary)

Charles Roach September 18, 1933 − October 2, 2012 Equality and civil rights advocates across Canada lost an incredible community activist and friend with the passing of renowned lawyer Charles Roach. Charlie never shied away from a cause. For more than 50 years, he led the fight against systemic racism and defended the most vulnerable in […]

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Emergency Meeting of Union Leaders to Announce Plans to Mobilize Opposition Against McGuinty’s Attack on Charter Rights

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE September 25, 2012 (Toronto, ON) — The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) will host an emergency meeting of labour union leaders representing over one million workers on Wednesday, September 26 to draft province-wide plans to challenge Premier Dalton McGuinty’s recent attack on the Charter rights of workers. After tabling the constitutionally disputed […]

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Bad Gas Rip-Off Hotline: Report Wage Theft from Gas Companies 1-800-668-9138

On Saturday, September 15, Toronto gas station attendant Jayesh Prajapati was run over and killed during pursuit of an SUV driver who stole $112 worth of gas. In response, the OFL sent a letter to the Toronto Police Service calling for a criminal investigation into the policies of Shell Canada and the possible role they played […]

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OFL Launches Hotline to Report Gas Company Theft of Worker Wages in Wake of Gas-and-Dash Tragedy

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE September 18, 2012 (Toronto, ON) — Despite denial from the petroleum industry, the Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) believes that the illegal practice of docking worker wages for gas theft may have played a role in Saturday night’s gas-and-dash killing of a Toronto gas station attendant. Today the OFL set out to […]

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OFL Calls for Criminal Investigation into Role of Shell Canada Policies in Gas-and-Dash Killing

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE September 17, 2012 (Toronto, ON) — The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) today wrote to the Toronto Police Service to call for a criminal investigation into the policies of Shell Canada and the possible role they played in Saturday night’s death of a Toronto gas station attendant. Amid public outcry over the […]

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ADVISORY: Ontario Federation of Labour to Join the Occupy Rally on Parliament Hill, Sept. 17

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE September 14, 2012 (Toronto) — On Monday, September 17, Ontario’s labour movement will be joining Canada’s Occupy movement on Parliament Hill to demand a stop to Prime Minister Harper’s cuts to jobs and services. Planned for the date that Parliament resumes after the summer recess and the one year anniversary of Occupy […]

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All Rise! – The People’s Court Will Judge Austerity (Sat. Sept. 15)

PSAC members know that an attack on public services workers is an attack on all Canadians. Under this federal government, public services are being slashed and the workers who provide them are being declared “affected” and told they may lose their jobs. This is not a government that believes in strengthening the services that Canadians […]

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The Labour Movement Mourns the Loss of Arlene Mantle

The Labour Movement mourns the loss of Arlene Mantle, a sister whose voice was on every picket line, rally or demo. She worked with many unions to create a space and voice for women through song. Below is a message from her family. ____ Arlene Mantle 1939–2012 She lit her candle in the wind. It […]

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WSIB Death and Injury Stats (Jan-July, 2012)

Twenty-seven workers reportedly died in workplace related accidents or from occupational disease in only one month, according to new Workplace Safety & Insurance Board (WSIB) statistics. That brings the total WSIB fatality claims to 236, while over 140,000 injury claims had been made. When compared to the 435 workplace fatalities and over 240,000 injury claims made in […]

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MEDIA RELEASE: McGuinty’s Anti-Union Posturing is Simply a Crass Game of Politics that Will Cost Him a Majority

For Immediate Release September 6, 2012 (Toronto, ON) — Stealing a page out of Tim Hudak’s failed “Change Book,” Premier Dalton McGuinty made a cynical electoral play when he decided to try to vilify school teachers and educational workers. In a deposition delivered last night on the McGuinty government’s controversial anti-worker bill, OFL President Sid […]

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Media Advisory: McGuinty’s Anti-Worker Gamble will Cost Him a Majority Government

For Immediate Release September 5, 2012 (Toronto, ON) — Stealing a page out of Tim Hudak’s failed “Change Book,” Premier Dalton McGuinty made a cynical electoral play when he decided to try to vilify school teachers and educational workers. In tonight’s deposition on the McGuinty government’s controversial anti-worker bill, the Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) will […]

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Labour-Community Alliance is the Only Way to Challenge Inequality: OFL Statement on Labour Day, 2012

OFL STATEMENT Labour-Community Alliance is the Only Way to Challenge Inequality OFL Statement on Labour Day, 2012  Just days before the Canadian workers celebrated their proud labour history, Ontario’s labour movement and more than 90 community groups and non-profit organizations released an unprecedented report that reverberated through the media from one end of the country […]

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Sid Ryan: Depressed wages are a drag on Canada’s economy (Labour Day Op-Ed in the Toronto Star)

Originally appeared online on Sept. 1 and in the print edition of the Toronto Star on Sept. 3, 2012. Click here to see the original op-ed piece in the Toronto Star.   Just in time to celebrate Labour Day, the American retail giant Target rolled into Canada, swallowed up 150 Zellers stores from the Hudson’s Bay […]

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Ontario Common Front report puts inequality in the news

Yesterday the Ontario Common Front hit the provincial scene in a big way with the launch of a report on Ontario’s growing inequality that dominated the media and put a spotlight on the harsh impact of cuts to jobs and services. Download a full copy of “Falling Behind” Download quick reference fact sheets The report […]

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Letter to South African President Jacob Zuma: Justice for Striking Workers

August 24, 2012 President Jacob Zuma President of South Africa Union Buildings Private Bag X1000, Pretoria 0001 South Africa Sent by letter mail and emailed to president@po.gov.za. A .PDF version of this letter can be downloaded from this link.   Dear President Zuma: Subject: Call for a Full and Independent Investigation into Police Shootings of […]

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Rally for Public Education: Tuesday, August 28, 2012 @ Noon

An emergency rally has just been called to demand respect for teachers and support for public education. It is crucial that union members and community allies come out in big numbers to protest the government’s proposed anti-collective bargaining legislation. A joint rally has been called by ETFO, OSSTF, and CUPE at Queen’s Park in Toronto […]

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Labour Leaders Join Celebration of Jack Layton’s Vision

On the anniversary of the passing of the Jack Layton, labour leaders from across the country joined thousands of people at Toronto’s City Hall to pay tribute to the beloved NDP Leader. Jack’s last act was his open letter to Canadians, released hours after his death. What came next was a collective outpouring of grief and sorrow, […]

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August 25: Stand in Solidarity with Mineworkers in South Africa

Condemn the Massacre of South African Miners Demonstration outside the Consulate of South Africa in Toronto When: 1:00 pm, Saturday, August 25, 2012 Where: South Africa Consulate-General, Toronto 110 Sheppard Ave East, Suite 600, (Sheppard-Yonge Subway Station) A rally is being organized by labour, community and international solidarity activists on Saturday, August 25, 2012 at […]

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Target Fairness: Mass demonstration in Mississauga at 11 am on Aug 22

Dear Sisters and Brothers, Over 10,000 Zellers workers need your support in demanding fairness from the American retail giant, Target. Since Target bought up Canadian Zellers stores, every employee (some with over 30 years of loyal service) learned they were being terminated and forced to reapply for their jobs. Bring friends, members and community allies […]

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OFL Applauds Crown’s Appeal of “Manifestly Unfit” Sentence in Metron Scaffolding Tragedy

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE August 21, 2012 (Toronto) — The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) President Sid Ryan today applauded Ontario’s Attorney General for appealing the $200,000 fine leveled against Metron Construction for criminal negligence claiming the lives of four workers and seriously injuring another on Christmas Eve 2009. Calling the sentence “manifestly unfit,” the Crown’s […]

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Labour of Love “Real Hip-Hop Tour” Travels Ontario

Join three of Ontario’s most well-known political hip-hop acts in celebrating workers’ struggles. This five-city tour will travel Ontario from Sudbury to Southern Ontario in the week leading into Labour Day. Featured Artists: TEST THEIR LOGIK (Toronto/London) is made up of two revolutionary MC’s: Testament and Illogik. Their music is a lyrical explosion in the […]

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NDP Candidate Catherine Fife Launches Campaign in K-W Byelection

On Thursday, August 16, NDP Candidate Catherine Fife launched her campaign in the Kitchener-Waterloo byelection with outstanding support. Nearly every Ontario NDP MP and MPP attended her campaign kick-off to a cheering crowd of more than 200. OFL Vice-President Irwin Nanda joined the campaign launch to bring labour support. After the launch, hundreds of volunteers […]

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WSIB Death and Injury Stats for the first 6 months of 2012

The latest death and injury stats from the Workplace Safety & Insurance Board (WSIB) report over 200 fatality claims and over 120,000 injuries. The tally for 2011 reached 436 workplace fatalities and 240,342 injury claims. It appears that the alarming trend in workplace tragedies remains unabated. 2012 WSIB Stats (to the end of June 2012) 209 […]

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Mark Your Calendars! OFL Equity Conference (Nov. 9-11, 2012)

The Ontario Federation of Labour will be hosting an Equity Conference from November 9 to 11 under the theme: “We Are Ontario: Putting Equity Before Austerity.” The event will be opened up to members who belong to the OFL’s many equity-seeking constituencies. Community groups will also be invited to add their voices and experiences to […]

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OFL Receives Appointment to Ontario’s First Prevention Council

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE August 10, 2012 (Toronto) — The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) welcomed yesterday’s Ontario government announcement of the province’s first Prevention Council on Occupational Health and Safety. Included in the announcement was the appointment of OFL Secretary-Treasurer Nancy Hutchison and four other worker representatives to advise the government on measures to protect […]

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Join the Ontario Common Front on Facebook! Help fight cuts across Ontario

The Ontario Common Front is a coalition of labour and community groups that have come together to challenge cuts to jobs and services in every community in Ontario. Join the Ontario Common Front on Facebook and share the page with your friends, coworkers and community allies. www.facebook.com/OntarioCommonFront Check out the website of the Ontario Common […]

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Info picket at Rogers Cup Tennis Final: Call for fair first contract, Aug. 12 @ 4:00 pm

Dear Sisters and Brothers, Help 300 Rogers workers secure a fair first collective agreement by bringing friends, co-workers and community allies to join an info picket during the Rogers Cup Tennis Final at York University on Sunday, August 12 at 4:00 pm. Please circulate the message from the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada […]

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Labour Federation Presidents: Premiers should fight back against Ottawa’s low-wage schemes (Op-Ed in the Halifax Chronicle Herald)

[Read the original op-ed in the Halifax Chronicle Herald] July 26, 2012 It has become clear that the federal government, supported by a number of employer organizations, has a plan for transforming Canada’s labour market in ways that will profoundly hurt Canadians. It’s a four-prong strategy which includes the dramatic expansion of the Temporary Foreign […]

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Sid Ryan: ‘Flexible’ labour means ‘cheap’ labour (Guest Column in Toronto Sun)

Guest Column in the Toronto Sun, July 23, 2012 http://m.torontosun.com/2012/07/20/flexible-labour-means-cheap-labour Prepare yourselves for lower-wages, fewer benefits and frequent job changes because middle class wages and job security are relics of the past, according to Ontario PC Leader Tim Hudak. After all, it is a dog-eat-dog job market out there and only the lean and mean will […]

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Sid Ryan: Stripping labour rights (Op-Ed in the Windsor Star)

Ontario PC Leader Tim Hudak would have you believe that trade unions have outlived their usefulness and workers are better off without their right to work together. In support of his White Paper, Paths to Prosperity – Flexible Labour Markets, Hudak concedes that “over time, unions have contributed to developing Ontario’s middle class and to […]

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Huffington Post: When Hudak Says “Flexible” Labour, He Really Means “Cheap” (Guest Blog Part 1 of 3 by Sid Ryan)

Guest Blog in the Huffington Post  When Hudak Says “Flexible” Labour, He Really Means “Cheap” Sid Ryan, President, Ontario Federation Labour  http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/../../sid-ryan/tim-hudak-unions_b_1680555.html This is part one of a three-part reply to Ontario PC Leader Tim Hudak’s series of HuffPost blogs about his party’s “Path to Prosperity” white paper. Since when was the middle class the enemy of Ontario’s […]

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Sid Ryan: Hudak pushes poverty over prosperity – Ontario PC leader signs onto Stephen Harper’s anti-labour agenda (Op-Ed in Hamilton Spectator)

It’s official. Reduced public services and cheap labour are the cornerstones of Ontario Conservatives’ latest economic scheme, as outlined in their recent white paper on “flexible labour markets.” For Progressive Conservative leader Tim Hudak, “prosperity” means turning Ontario into a low-wage, regulation-free haven where corporations rake in profit at the expense of Ontario workers, communities […]

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OFL’s Sid Ryan live interviewed on CP24 about Metron Construction Fines

Watch this CP24 video clip of a live interview with Sid Ryan after Metron Construction was slapped with a $200,000 fine for the deaths of 4 workers and the critical injury of a third. Sid Interviewed Live by CP24’s George Lagogianes: The OFL has called on the crown to appeal the sentence because justice can’t be […]

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OFL Calls on Crown to Appeal Metron Sentence: A Worker’s Life is Worth More than $50K

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE July 13, 2012 (Toronto) — The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) President Sid Ryan is calling on the Crown to appeal the $200,000 fine leveled against Metron Construction today for the deaths of four workers and the critical injury of another. Ryan had harsh criticisms for a judicial system that continues to […]

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OFL Expects Historic Sentencing of Negligent Company: Restitution Sought for Victim and Survivors

(Toronto) — The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) is bracing itself for a historic verdict this Friday, when the sentence will be announced against Metron Construction. The company’s criminal negligence led to the deaths of four workers and the critical injury of another when scaffolding collapsed at a Toronto high-rise on December 24, 2009. While […]

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Sid Ryan: Conservative Tim Hudak pushes plan for poverty, not prosperity (Op-Ed in Toronto Star)

It’s official. Reduced public services and cheap labour are the cornerstones of Ontario Conservatives’ latest economic scheme, as outlined in their recent white paper on “flexible labour markets.” For Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak, “prosperity” means turning Ontario into a low-wage, regulation-free haven where corporations rake in profit at the expense of Ontario workers, communities […]

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Out and Proud: Labour Contingent Photos from Toronto Pride

On July 1, the OFL and many affiliates celebrated Toronto Pride by marching together in a proud labour contingent. The theme of this year’s contingent was “We Are Ontario: Out and Proud” and it served as an opportunity to challenge government cuts to jobs and social programs that will affect the LGBTQ community. Click here […]

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Hudak Plan Seeks to Strip Workers of Wages, Benefits and Pensions

(TORONTO)  — Ontario PC Leader Tim Hudak’s White Paper on “Flexible Labour Markets” seeks to strip Ontario workers of wages, benefits and pensions, according to the Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL). “Hudak’s proposed reforms to Ontario labour laws are nothing but sour grapes. He blames labour unions and not his own bad policy for his […]

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Show Solidarity for Striking Peel Workers

CUPE 966 Solidarity BBQ (Tuesday, June 26 @ Noon) Join striking members of CUPE Local 966 for a solidarity barbeque and help call for a fair settlement. This mostly female workforce deserves a fair contract that grants them equal treatment with other workers in the region. Your support can help restore the vital services they […]

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Callous Assault by Employers on Cancer Victims and Surviving Widows

OFL Calls on McGuinty to Reinstate Compensation for Victims and Survivors (Toronto) — As a result of an employer-led legal campaign, victims of occupational disease and their survivors have been cut off of “loss of earnings” benefit payments by the Workplace Safety & Insurance Board (WSIB). OFL President Sid Ryan sent an urgent letter to […]

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Letter to the Premier: Compensation for Occupational Disease Victims and Survivors

Dear Premier McGuinty: I am writing to bring your attention to a serious attack on Workplace Safety & Insurance Board (WSIB) compensation benefits for victims and survivors of occupational disease. This is an issue of grave concern to the Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL), the injured worker community, and indeed many Ontarians. By way of […]

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Urgent: Support Needed for Students Occupying Minister Glen Murray’s Office to Drop Tuition Fees

Post-secondary students from across the GTA are currently occupying the office of Training, Colleges and Universities Minister Glen Murray to drop tuition fees. Please support them by bringing members and flags to join the picket outside of Murray’s Cabbagetown Constituency Office today between now and 4:00 pm and help to spread the word.

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No Jail Time, No Justice, Says OFL

(TORONTO, ON) — The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) expressed frustration that Metron Construction boss Joel Swartz won’t be facing jail time for the deaths of four workers and serious injury to another. While applauding the historic conviction of the company – the first in Ontario to face conviction for criminal negligence – the OFL made it clear that the $1-million fine sought by the prosecution doesn’t deliver sufficient justice to the victims and their families.

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No More Broken Promises! OFL Statement on National Aboriginal Day, June 21, 2012

After years of inaction on critical Aboriginal land and resource matters and its refusal to protect the sacred burial sites of the Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug (KI) First Nation on Big Trout Lake, the Government of Ontario finally showed signs of conceding. In March 2012, the McGuinty Government relented to public pressure and issued a temporary stop to all mining activity on KI land, but the moratorium didn’t apply to Toronto-based God’s Lake Resources, which staked its claims early enough to get in under the wire.

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Contact the OFL

Sign up for OFL updates by clicking here! Other ways to reach us: Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) 15 Gervais Drive, Suite 202 Toronto, Ontario, Canada M3C 1Y8 Telephone: 416-441-2731 Fax: 416-441-1893 or 416-441-0722 Toll-Free: 1-800-668-9138 TDD: 416-443-6305 Email: info@ofl.ca Media Inquiries: Meagan Perry, Director of Communications c: 416-894-3456 | e: mperry@ofl.ca Directory: OFL Officers […]

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Read the latest publications on this issue

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet Click Here to see all OFL Publications

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Contact the OFL committee working on this issue

Click here to learn more about OFL Committees. For more information on the OFL Workers of Colour Committee, contact: Janice Gairey, Human Rights Director 1.416.441.2731   |   jgairey@ofl.ca

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“Toby’s Law” Marks Break-Through for Human Rights

On the opening day of the OFL’s Out@Work Conference, delegates were joined by NDP MPP Cheri DiNovo (Parkdale-High Park) who announced the second reading passing of Bill 33, Toby’s Act (Right to be Free from Discrimination and Harassment Because of Gender Identity or Gender Expression). In her fourth attempt to secure Human Rights Code protections […]

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Funding Cut for Canadian Apprenticeship Forum

The Canadian Apprenticeship Forum (CAF) is a pan-Canadian body that brings together government, employer and labour representatives of trades across Canada. This year the federal government de-funded the organization, along with other sector councils. In order to maintain a pan-Canadian body, a proposal has been developed to fundraise $850,000 by April 2013 to maintain the […]

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Toxic River Poisons Grassy Narrows

The people of Grassy Narrows have sustained themselves for thousands of years on their traditional territory – 2,500 square miles of forest, lakes and rivers north of Kenora, Ontario. Now plans for clear-cut logging, mining and the legacy of residential schools, hydro damming, relocation, and mercury poisoning threaten to uproot the way of life of […]

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We Are Ontario: Anti-Austerity Monday (June 11)

Stop Schedule 28 Pack the Gallery at Queen’s Park; Rally Against E.I. Cuts
You Can Help Stop Schedule 28: A Call to Action
Everyone who is concerned about the privatization of our public services needs to take action as soon as possible. Amendments to the Budget Bill are due by the end of the day on Tuesday, so we do not have much time.

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Open Letter to Québec Students:

On behalf of over one million workers in Ontario, I am writing to you to express our strongest solidarity with your movement to stop tuition fee hikes and maintain a high quality, accessible post-secondary education system in Québec. We salute your movement’s determination to continue in the face of an intransigent government and violent police crack-downs.

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E.I. Changes Target Vulnerable Workers

Buried in Harper’s omnibus budget are E.I. changes targeting some of the most vulnerable workers–including migrant and unemployed workers–to create downward pressure on the wages of all workers. Last year, the federal government announced the closure of more than 80 percent of E.I processing centres and the elimination of hundreds of associated jobs. As a result, […]

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New Anti-Bullying Law Protects LGBTQ Youth

The Ontario government’s anti-bullying legislation is on its way to becoming law, making it clear that sexual assault, gender-based violence, homophobia and transphobia will not be tolerated in the province’s public schools. While the law comes too late to save the lives of 15-year-old Jamie Hubley and 11-year-old Mitchell Wilson, it is hoped to help […]

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Labour is OUT and PROUD: 2012 Ontario Pride Events

Equality is a founding principal for our labour movement. We urge unions to be out & proud! Show support and solidarity for the LGBT community by building and participating in your community Pride events.

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Sid Ryan: Redirecting our priorities (Guest Column in the Toronto Sun)

Sid Ryan, Guest Columnist Article Appeared in Print Edition: Saturday, June 2, 2012 Read the article on the Toronto Sun website and share your comments Quebec is currently gripped in a not-so-quiet revolution and, in an ironic twist, it is the children of the ’60s and ’70s who led an era of momentous social upheaval […]

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Ontario College of Trades Impacts Services and Other Sectors

The Ontario College of Trades (OCOT) is well underway, with two consultations that are important to Trades and Apprentices—membership and membership fees—having been completed on June 3, 2012. Ratio Reviews are currently underway for each trade. The ratio of journeypersons to apprentices is important in maintaining the quality of apprenticeship training and to ensure that […]

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Sid Ryan: The case for zero tuition (Opinion Article in the National Post)

Numerous National Post columnists have argued that striking Quebec students should just accept higher tuition rates. I don’t get that argument. In Ireland, where I’m from, education is free from kindergarten through university. It seems absurd to me that we charge our young people any college or university fees at all, given that their skills and knowledge will propel our economy.

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Harassment Forces Some Workers to Choose Between Their Safety or Their Job: OFL Statement on Sexual Harassment Awareness Week, June 1-7, 2012

Studies show that the majority of working women will experience some form of sexual harassment throughout their working lives; however the harassment experienced in the workplace is not solely limited to sexual harassment. Harassment on the basis of race, sexual orientation, disability, gender identity/expression and various other forms of personal harassment, compounded with harassment due to gender can make the workplace, and indeed society, dangerous and even lethal for many vulnerable workers.

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Mississauga Solidarity Rally for CUPE 966 – Friday, June 1 @ 1:00 pm

Dear Sisters and Brothers, Your support is crucial in helping the striking Human Services members of CUPE 966 get a fair contract from the Region of Peel. The big pink CUPE 966 Flying Squad bus has become one of the most visible and consistent features of every rally and picket line throughout the province. Now […]

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Letter to the Toronto Sun: Draconian Legislation

Megan Harris appears blind to her own double standard. She complains about the efforts of students to bring accessible post-secondary education to Ontario, then she admits to moving from Toronto in 1990 to study at a much more affordable Montreal university where she escaped Ontario’s punishingly high tuition fees. For 14 weeks, more than 150,000 striking college and university students have been joined by thousands of citizens of all ages and backgrounds in overwhelmingly peaceful protests against the plan of Quebec Premier Jean Charest to double tuition fees.

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OFL’s Sid Ryan calls on the Ontario student movement to take to the streets to stop punishingly high tuition fees: OFL Officers to join mass protest in Montréal

(Montréal, Québec) — Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) President Sid Ryan is today calling on the Ontario student movement to follow the lead of Québec students in taking to the streets to stop punishingly high tuition fees. All three OFL officers, including OFL Secretary-Treasurer Nancy Hutchison and Executive Vice-President Irwin Nanda, will be joining a mass rally in Montréal today to protest skyrocketing tuition fees and draconian laws to suppress civil rights.

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Chief Blair Must Step Down or be Fired: OFL President Says G20 Police Accountability Must Start at the Top

(TORONTO, ON) — Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) President Sid Ryan today responded to a damning report on the police use of excessive force during the 2010 G20 Summit in Toronto by calling for the resignation of Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair.

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Fighting for LGBT Rights Wins Gains and Inspires Hope! OFL Statement on the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia, May 17, 2012

As the global community recognizes May 17 as the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia, the Ontario LGBT community is making gains in human rights and protections, one legislative step at a time. After its fourth introduction before the Ontario Legislature, Bill 33, the Right to be Free from Discrimination and Harassment Because of Gender Identity or Gender Expression Act, 2012, has finally been passed through Second Reading. The bill, commonly known as “Toby’s Act,” was debated and voted on for the first time ever in the Ontario Legislature, and has now been referred to the Standing Committee on Social Policy.

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Brampton Rally for Fair Deal for CUPE 966 (Thur, May 10 @ 11:30 am)

Help spread the word and support CUPE 966 (Ontario Works staff) to get a fair contract from the Region of Peel.
The members of CUPE 966 Human Services Unit are on strike against an employer that is going after their wages and sick leave. This is a local made up predominantly of women and workers of colour, who provide essential community services for the most vulnerable and marginalized in our society. They work in family and youth homeless shelters, provide employment assistance and training, process social assistant cheques, operate child care centres, help victims of violence, place people in subsidized housing, provide immigrant settlement services, and much, much more.

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OFL President Sid Ryan calls for social justice for the Sikh community

(TORONTO, ON) – Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) President Sid Ryan called for social justice for the Sikh community before a hundred thousand at a Baisakhi Day (or Vaisakhi Day) Celebration in Etobicoke, Ontario on Sunday, May 6, 2012. OFL Secretary-Treasurer Nancy Hutchison and Executive Vice-President Irwin Nanda also joined the annual event that included a parade from the Mississauga neighbourhood of Malton to a religious centre in Toronto’s west-end. The three officers participated with NDP MPP Jagmeet Singh (Bramalea-Gore-Malton), who is himself an outspoken advocate for social justice, human rights and workers’ rights.

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OFL Celebrates South Asian Heritage Month

The OFL helped recognize May as South Asian Heritage Month by co-hosting a labour celebration at Brampton’s Sagan Banquet Hall on May 8. The event drew over 300 participants to celebrate South Asian cultures and honour labour and community activism. Among the event sponsors were the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC), the Brampton-Mississauga and District Labour […]

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20th Anniversary of the Westray Mine Disaster

This year marked the 20th anniversary of the Nova Scotia Westray mine disaster in which an underground methane explosion claimed the lives of 26 workers prompted years of relentless lobbying by the United Steelworkers that finally resulted in Bill C-45 changes to the criminal code that allowed for the prosecution of negligent employers. OFL Secretary-Treasurer […]

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Listen to OFL’s Nancy Hutchison On CBC Radio’s “Sunday Edition”: May 6 After the 9 am News

Tune in to CBC Radio’s “Sunday Edition” on Sunday, May 6 after the 9 am news to hear OFL Secretary-Treasurer Nancy Hutchison and retired USW National Health and Safety Coordinator Andy King talking to Michael Enright about the 20th anniversary of the Westray Mine disaster. This tragedy resulted in the deaths of all 26 miners who were working underground at the time and gave rise to Bill C-45, which became known as the “Westray Bill.”

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Today’s Legislative vote on labour law reform will be a test of the new relationship between the Liberals and the NDP

(TORONTO, ON) — “McGuinty’s Liberals relied on the support of the NDP to pass the Ontario Budget and they will continue to rely on this partnership in the weeks and months ahead,” said OFL President Sid Ryan. “The vote this afternoon on labour law reform will be a test of the new relationship between the Liberals and the NDP.”

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Six Nations Walk for Peace, Respect and Friendship

On April 28, 2012, a thousand Canadians from across Southern Ontario participated in the Walk, Rally, and Potluck for Peace, Respect, and Friendship and joined with Indigenous land defenders and families who are tired of the inaction and disrespect shown by all levels of Canadian government, to demand that Six Nations land rights be respected. […]

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Over 15,000 Attend Largest Community Protest of McGuinty’s Term

(TORONTO, ON) – Nearly 100 buses rolled in to Toronto to join over 15 thousand Ontarians from all walks of life for the largest protest of McGuinty’s term. Community and labour groups from towns and cities across Ontario, and as far away as Timmins, converged at Queen’s Park only days before the final budget vote to demand fair taxation from banks and corporations.

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Community and Labour Groups to Protest Budget Unfairness

(TORONTO, ON) – Nearly 100 buses are expected to join thousands of Ontarians from all walks of life for the largest protest of McGuinty’s term. Community and labour groups from over 30 towns and cities as far away as Timmins will converge at Queen’s Park today at 3:00 pm to demand fair taxation from banks and corporations.

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We are Ontario: Ninety Community and Labour Groups Plan Mass Rally Saturday to Demand Budget Fairness

(TORONTO, ON) – At a media conference held at Queen’s Park today, representatives of 90 community and labour groups unveiled a province-wide campaign, called “We Are Ontario,” to challenge lopsided budget priorities that promise more hardship for families while protecting the profits for big corporations. McGuinty’s cuts to jobs and services, which are the largest since Mike Harris’ first term of office, have stirred an opposition to match.

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Media Conference Launches Labour and Community Campaign Against McGuinty’s Budget Cuts

(TORONTO, ON) – A media conference to be held at Queen’s Park on Friday, April 20 at 10:00 am will launch a province-wide campaign, called “We Are Ontario,” that brings together over 90 labour and community groups to oppose unfair budget cuts that target poor and middle-class families while rewarding banks and corporations. The campaign is planning a 3:00 pm rally of thousands at Queen’s Park on Saturday, April 21 but it will start the prior evening with a mass community assembly, called the “Common Front,” from 3:00 to 6:00 pm on Friday, April 20 at the Church of the Holy Trinity (behind Toronto’s Eaton Centre).

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97 Busloads to Join Rally of Thousands Demanding Budget Fairness

(TORONTO, ONTARIO) – With thousands already signed up to board 97 buses from as far away as Timmins, and thousands more planning to travel by foot, car and streetcar to the Queen’s Park Legislature, Saturday’s rally against McGuinty’s deep budget cuts is expected to demonstrate widespread public opposition only days before the final budget vote.

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Workers Trade in Blue and White Collars for Pink Shirts to Challenge Bullying – OFL Statement on the Day of Pink, April 11, 2012

On April 11, workers around the province will be trading in the blue and white collars for pink shirts to challenge homophobia, transphobia and other forms of bullying. Celebrated each year on the second Wednesday of April, the International Day of Pink is marked by millions of people who wear pink shirts to demonstrate that positive actions can make a difference.

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OFL Hosts First-Ever Equity Retreat in Niagara Falls

From March 30 to April 1, the OFL hosted its first-ever Equity Retreat at the Embassy Suites Niagara Falls. The event was an incredible success and drew over 100 participants from the OFL’s various equity-seeking constituencies, including: Aboriginal Persons, LGBTQ, Persons with Disabilities, Women Workers, Workers of Colour, Workers Under 30 and a number of […]

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OFL President Sid Ryan Available for Comment Following Release of Ontario Budget

(TORONTO, ON) – Today, the McGuinty government delivered two budgets to the province: a lucrative one for corporations and the financial sector and another full of deep cuts to core services for everyone else. McGuinty’s stubborn refusal to increase provincial revenue through the fair taxation of banks and corporations will cost many their jobs and many more their livelihoods.

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OFL President Sid Ryan Available for Comment Live From Federal NDP Convention

(TORONTO, ON) – Sid Ryan, President of the Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL), will be available during the federal NDP Leadership Convention in Toronto for comment on the leadership race to replace Jack Layton and the relationship between labour and the NDP.

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Equality in our Lifetime – OFL Statement on the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, March 21, 2012

On March 21, as Canadians join people all over the world in recognizing the United Nations International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, Canada’s racialized wage gap and poverty-stricken Aboriginal communities tell the story of a legacy of colonialism and ongoing systemic racism that continue to conspire against equality within our borders. Even modest strides toward wage parity for some of Canada’s workers of colour are being offset by a growing gap between the richest Canadians and the rest of us. However, recent international attention on income inequality and Canada’s deplorable treatment of its First Nations has inspired a new movement to fight for real equality within our lifetime.

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New Poll Finds Strong Majority Supports Calling an Election

(TORONTO, ON) –Ontarians from every riding in the province are solidly opposed to the unfairness of McGuinty’s budget and they are ready to go back to the polls to demand fair taxation, says a new poll conducted by Public Polling Inc. on behalf of the Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL).

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Toronto Library Workers Strike for Fairness

Contract talks between Toronto Public Library Board and its 2,300 employees broke down on March 18 and the workers walked out to protest concessions that were the most onerous in the history of the library. The job action is the direct result of the aggressive budgetary cuts that were imposed by Toronto Mayor Rob Ford […]

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Outraged Seniors, Retirees and Workers Expected to Pack Oshawa Townhall Over Harper’s Pension Cuts

(OSHAWA, ON) – Outraged by Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s recent threat to cut Old Age Security (OAS) benefits, retirees, pensioners and workers are expected to pack an Oshawa Townhall meeting this Thursday to send a message to local politicians. Area Conservative MPs Jim Flaherty, Bev Oda and Colin Carrie have been invited to listen to the experiences and concerns of constituents who are calling on the government to support public pensions.

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Novotel Workers Speak Out Against Employer Bullying and Reprisals

(TORONTO, ON) ─ At a media conference held at Queen’s Park today, workers from Novotel hotels in Ottawa and Toronto shared their experiences facing discipline, suspension and termination after they were identified as union supporters. Despite the global commitment of Accor, Novotel’s parent company, to “not oppose efforts to unionize its employees,” 14 of 25 union supporters at two hotels have been targeted. A union drive taking place at a third Novotel location in North York has not yet gone to a vote and already one union supporter has been disciplined.

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OFL Accuses Vale of Whitewashing Investigation into Double Fatality, Calls for Criminal Investigation

(TORONTO, ON) ─ Ontario Federation of Labour President Sid Ryan accused multinational mining corporation, Vale, of whitewashing an internal investigation into a 2011 double fatality at its Stobie Mine in Sudbury. A separate investigation conducted by the United Steelworkers (USW) that was released today found evidence of company negligence warranting a criminal investigation.

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Update on Labour Adjustment Advisory Program

Since the implementation of the Labour Market Development Agreements between the federal and provincial governments, the province delivers EI Part II benefits. The provincial government has maintained an Adjustment Advisory Program (AAP) with designated staff to facilitate action to support laid-off workers, including support for worker-led action committees and centres designed to provide peer support […]

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Activism Halts Closure of 12 Peel Region Child Care Centres

A quick response from parents, the Brampton-Mississauga and District Labour Council, the Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care (OCBCC), the OFL, the CLC, affiliates and scores of community allies put the brakes on a rushed vote by Peel Region Council to close 12 public child care centres. In late January, parents in Peel Region learned […]

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Massive London Day of Action Takes on Corporate Greed

More than 15,000 trade unionists and supporters descended upon downtown London, Ontario on January 21 in an overwhelming display of solidarity with the members of CAW Local 27. Dubbed a “London Day of Action Against Corporate Greed,” the rally was held in Victoria Park, the site of last year’s Occupy London tent city. The downtown […]

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Federation Presidents Stand Up for Health Care

On January 16, the first day of the Council of the Federation meeting, the OFL and the other provincial or territorial labour federations issued an open letter calling on the Premiers of Canada to reject the Harper Government’s “plan” for health care. The letter was a response to an announcement made by the Harper government […]

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