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Douglas O’Halloran – 1952-2019

UFCW Canada -

Calgary – October 16, 2019 – Douglas O’Halloran, president of UFCW 401 for three decades, a UFCW International Vice President, and a pillar of the UFCW family and the labour movement, passed away peacefully on October 14 after a long illness, surrounded by his family.

Strike mandate and rejection of final offer at Purolator

Unifor -

Members of Local 146Q working at Purolator rejected a final offer from the employer by a vote of 72 per cent.

“This result is a clear sign of our members’ outrage at the employer’s lack of consideration for them. They are disappointed and frustrated with the monetary offers presented by the employer,” explained Serge Dupont, Assistant to the Unifor Quebec Director.  

It should be noted that the members had previously voted 78 per cent in favour of a strike mandate during meetings held over the weekend of September 14. 

“Despite the strike vote, the employer has persisted in its attitude of arrogance and contempt for employees by making a final offer that was almost identical to a previous one. Our members told us at the meetings that they are willing to go all the way to obtain wage offers that meet their expectations and allow them to maintain their quality of life instead of diminishing it,” added Brother Dupont.

A mediator has been appointed in the dispute. The union can decide to exercise its strike mandate at any time with a minimum notice of 72 hours following the mediation period, which would be October 21.

Purolator employs some 164 Unifor members in Quebec, working as counter agents in pick-up and delivery locations and in customer service.

MGEU Releases 2019-20 Education Calendar

Manitoba Government & General Employees Union -

The MGEU kicked off the upcoming training year by releasing the 2019-2020 Education Calendar. As in years’ past, the MGEU will offer Core Courses like Representing Our Members and Bargaining Collectively, which provide a solid foundation for workplace representatives in their elected roles. Popular Issues Seminars, which allow workplace reps to explore issues in-depth with courses like Conflict Resolution Skills, also return this fall.

Public support for My Crowns campaign continues to grow

Unifor -

The public support for the My Crowns continues to win the hearts and minds of the people of Saskatchewan.

In a recent online poll by the Regina Leader-Post, more than 80% of respondents said they support striking Crown workers (more than 3,700 people voted).

This result comes on the heels of a more scientific poll conducted for Unifor by AngusReid that showed 89% of respondents in Saskatchewan believe workers should get wage increases of at least inflation.

These figures should be no surprise: Crown workers are extremely valuable to the Saskatchewan economy and make important contributions in every community across the province.  The crowns generated over 400 million dollars to the Government of Saskatchewan.

This has been our message from day one. Crown workers deserve better than zeros and good crown jobs should remain in the province not be shipped elsewhere. We have taken this message to the people of Saskatchewan, and it is  paying off.

We made every attempt at the bargaining table with a callous government, so now Unifor is all in on a strike to demonstrate our commitment to fairness.

Here’s what “all in” has looked like so far, with much more to come:

  • Opinion polling and graphics for sharing online
  • 22 Videos since October 3, 2019 with more than 1.2 million views
  • Newspaper advertisements
  • Billboards
  • Bus ads
  • Radio ads
  • Twitter ads
  • Facebook ads
  • Television ads
  • Media conferences
  • Social media shareables
  • Visits from the National President
  • Two rallies, including a massive show of force at Queensbury
  • Unprecedented shut-downs of SaskTel, SaskPower, SaskEnergy and DirectWest  locations
  • Daily media coverage (more than 500 media hits in past three months)
  • Solidarity meetings with other unions
  • Editorials in the newspaper
  • Campaign-branded t-shirts, hats, buttons, and more
  • On social media, we have more than 3 million impressions

It is clear that we are winning the battle for the hearts and minds of our communities.  We cannot and will not rest on our accomplishments. Unifor will continue to organize mass actions until an agreement is reached.

There is no predicting when this dispute will be over, but the pressure we’re putting on the Moe Government is increasing and the polling above shows that our message is sinking in.

For more information, visit www.myCrowns.ca

Allowing single sport betting a no-brainer

Unifor -

It is election time and voters want action, not words. They want commitments that are tangible and relatable, not ideas that will take years to be debated and discussed. They want decisions that will have an impact on their lives and their community.

Similarly, they want to be sure that politicians are held accountable for inaction and missed opportunities.

We have written about, talked about and shouted about the need to amend the Criminal Code to allow for Single Sport Betting. This is the biggest no brainer that any party can do to support border communities and protect jobs.

‘The cost to government is ZERO. What other government program for job preservation and job creation costs zero? It costs the federal government no money. It protects consumers by channelling current unregulated gaming into a regulated environment. It channels revenue, currently leaving the country, into the provincial governments and towards government programs.

Most importantly, it protects jobs and creates jobs. New York and Michigan have already opened sports books. We know exactly what happens when we cede our position to the U.S. - jobs migrate south.

Given all that, who will stand up and do what’s right?

We have had two private members bills from local MPs who have looked out for gaming sector workers. It is time that all parties acknowledge that the risk today is real and the timing is urgent.

This is not a matter of if, but when - and the impact will be absolute, predictable and it is completely avoidable. People will cross the border to Michigan and New York and Washington and Montana and New Hampshire.

Windsor, Niagara and other border communities will once again be hurt. Thousands of jobs are at stake and thousands can be created. That is as big swing and a risk I will not allow our members to take without a fight.

There is no opposition to this. The provinces are supportive, the major sports leagues are supportive and most importantly, our workers and communities are supportive.

The government works for the people. The people want to preserve their communities and jobs. We ask all parties, where do you stand? We need to know before we vote because this is a key issue for our community and our members to have clarity on as they cast their ballots on October 21.


Jerry Dias and Dave Cassidy

Unifor signs new collective agreement with CertainTeed

Unifor -

Unifor members at CertainTeed Canada Inc., a building product company in Mississauga, have voted to ratify a new three-year collective agreement that includes wage gains and enhanced early retirement payments.

“Unifor is raising the standards for all workers in Canada. This bargaining committee worked diligently to make jobs more viable while improving conditions and wages for workers,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor President.

The new agreement secured annual two per cent wage gains over three years, improved early retirement payments and upgraded language regarding scheduling of continental work weeks.

“We were bound and determined to get a fair deal,” said Angus MacDonald, Local 1256 President. “Through onerous negotiations the bargaining committee showed impressive solidarity. We made important gains toward clearer language, enhanced benefits, and fairness for everyone.”

“This membership was solid. We had a 100% strike mandate and that’s how we made these gains,” said Howard Law, Media Sector Director.

A strong majority of workers voted in favor of the new agreement on October 8th, 2019.

Get rid of sick notes

Rank and File - latest news -

By Lisa Cameron In Nova Scotia, your boss can demand proof that you’re sick, even if it’s just a short term illness. Those requests make life miserable for workers and put stress on an already overburdened medical system. For many short-term sicknesses, a trip to… Read More