The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) is speaking out to oppose the rapidly escalating violence in Israel-Palestine, and joining the call for an immediate ceasefire, aid to Gaza, and an end to the blockade.
In its statement on October 9, 2023, the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), representing labour organizations internationally, unequivocally condemned all attacks on innocent civilians. We too condemn Hamas’ attack on October 7 and Israel’s subsequent response. Violence must not beget more violence.
The loss of thousands of lives has caused unspeakable pain, and it must end now.
With each passing hour, the situation is spiralling to a full-scale war, on top of an already devastating humanitarian crisis.
The OFL calls on the Canadian Labour Congress, and all trade union allies, to join us in making these demands of the Government of Canada:
- Call for an immediate ceasefire of all hostilities in Israel-Palestine
- Call for an end to the blockade of Gaza and for the restoration of humanitarian aid and access to the basic necessities of life
- Call for the safe and immediate return of all hostages and civilians being held in detention without charge
Support for these demands is widespread and growing.
On October 20, 2023, the ITUC backed the demand for an immediate ceasefire.
In Canada, a broad coalition of civil society, faith, Arab, Jewish, and labour organizations issued its own powerful statement for a ceasefire. We applaud these initiatives and pledge our solidarity to all peace-loving people who are building the movement we need to end the violence.
The United Nations and the World Health Organization have sounded the alarm, Gaza is running out of water and food, and hospitals and water treatment plants can’t run without electricity or fuel.
Across Canada, workers are experiencing a sharp spike in Anti-Arab and anti-Palestinian racism, Islamophobia, and antisemitism. We vehemently condemn these acts.
The labour movement has a long tradition of speaking out against war. In our own organizations, we pledge to create safer, welcoming, and inclusive spaces for members to continue discussing this issue.
We firmly believe a just and lasting peace is possible in Israel-Palestine, where people of all backgrounds and faiths can live peaceably side by side, in safety and security, and with justice for all.