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Unifor launches ad campaign to raise awareness about the future of the energy sector

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With big changes in the energy sector underway, what does the future hold for Canadians whose livelihoods depend on it?

“About 12,000 Unifor members work in the energy sector,” said Scott Doherty, Unifor Assistant to the National President. “Unifor wants to ensure that as the economy shifts, current and future generations will continue to have good paying jobs.”

Natural resources are vital to Canada’s economy and fossil fuels will remain a critical component of the world’s energy needs for decades to come. However, the country’s energy policy has focussed on shipping unprocessed oil and gas to foreign markets for refining, then importing those same refined products for domestic use.

“We need to invest more in infrastructure, processing and refining,” said Kim Conway, Energy Council Chair. “That will reduce our dependence on importing refined products and create more Canadian jobs.”

Watch our video about the future of the energy sector and what it means to you: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4qcCzlpXUig&feature=player_embedded

Unifor is calling on all levels of government to help create a new national energy strategy that reflects our vision. Read more:


UFCW calls for further action to protect migrant workers in new submission to federal government

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Toronto – July 24, 2019 – In the wake of the federal government’s introduction of open work permits for migrant workers experiencing abuse, UFCW Canada has released a new submission calling on the government to pursue additional reforms that could help strengthen migrant workers’ rights and provide options for permanent residency.    

The founder of #metoo shares her story at #Unifor19 Convention

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When sexual abuse allegations first surfaced against powerful Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein in 2016, few people had heard of #metoo. A trickle of actresses who accused Weinstein of sexual abuse quickly turned into a flood of women who posted their own stories on Twitter. Within the blink of an eye, #metoo became a worldwide movement of women speaking out against sexual harassment and sexual abuse.

At Unifor’s constitutional convention in August, “Me Too” founder Tarana Burke will be a featured speaker. Burke is a civil rights activist from New York, who began using the phrase to raise awareness of the pervasiveness of sexual abuse in society in 2006.

Burke says there has been a lot of emphasis on perpetrators of sexual violence, but very little discussion about the lives of survivors and the process of healing. Burke intends to help lead the focus on that discussion in the years ahead.

Burke was named Time Magazine’s Person of the Year for 2017. She speaks at events across North America and is Senior Director for the organization Girls for Gender Equity in Brooklyn.

Her speech at Unifor’s Quebec City Convention will be on August 20 at 2pm. Members not attending the convention can watch her live on Unifor’s Facebook page.

Unifor Media Action Plan takes journalism campaign to airwaves

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Journalism matters. That is the message Unifor’s Media Action Plan is taking to prime time in a new television commercial debuting this week.

“Who else is going to fight to save local news and protect jobs in media if not us, Canada’s largest media union?” said Jake Moore, Chair of Unifor’s Media Council.

The campaign video will air across Canada on several national newscasts over the summer.

“Canadians need reliable local and national news to be informed about events that affect their lives, the experiences of their neighbours, and the impact of social and political policies,” said Tanya Luciani, chair of the Media Action Plan committee.

The steep decline of media advertising has resulted in thousands of layoffs in print, broadcast news, sports and entertainment. Google and Facebook have sucked a whopping $7 billion of advertising money out of the Canada media business yearly while contributing nothing to local news.

All while more than 250 newsrooms have shut their doors across Canada over the last ten years.

These losses include small and mid sized papers in places like Guelph, Moose Jaw, Nanaimo and in Quebec’s eastern townships.

The current government provided a $595 million newspaper rescue package in its last budget.

Unifor has lobbied the federal government over the last four years as part of the #savelocalnews campaign, with demands to level the playing field and apply federal regulations to the American tech giants.

For more information go to MediaActionPlan.ca. Will you stand with media workers, and tell Members of Parliament that local Canadian news matters and must be saved?

New polling shows Canadians believe in post-secondary education, and so should our federal political parties


 (Ottawa – July 23, 2019) Canadians believe post-secondary education (PSE) has a positive impact on themselves and the country as a whole, is more relevant today in our rapidly changing world, and makes us stronger in the face of new challenges, according to a new national survey conducted by Abacus Data for the Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT).

With provincial and territorial ministers of education in Victoria July 24-25 for the Council of Ministers of Education, Canada (CMEC) meeting, the survey results are timely and of key relevance to their discussions on crucial PSE issues.

Findings include:

  • A large majority (78%) of those surveyed view universities and colleges as having positive impacts on the direction of the country;
  • Most Canadians believe PSE is more relevant than ever, with 70% agreeing that “it has never been more important to get a post-secondary education given the changes in the economy and society”;
  • When told that Canada has the highest rate of residents with a post-secondary degree among comparable countries, two thirds (65%) of respondents feel it makes Canada a better place to live, a view that’s held across demographic, regional, and socio-economic groups. A majority of all political party supporters feel this way as well;
  • 93% of Canadians would get a PSE if there were no tuition, indicating cost is a factor for lifelong learning.

“The survey also showed that Canadians are concerned about many issues such as climate change, our aging population, and growing economic and social inequality,” says CAUT executive director David Robinson. “In that context, Canadians clearly see the value of PSE in preparing students for the modern economy, training the next generation of problem solvers, conducing research, and introducing students to a wide range of viewpoints and perspectives.”

CAUT is calling on all federal political parties to support PSE the way most Canadians want the government to support it, by:

  • Ensuring that every student who wants to go to college or university can go, regardless of their ability to pay (84%);
  • Investing more in full-time post-secondary teaching positions (85%);
  • Reducing class sizes at colleges and universities (64%);
  • Eliminating post-secondary tuition entirely (61%).

“Post-secondary education makes Canada more united, stronger, and positioned to tackle the challenges we will face today and in the future,” Robinson says. “The federal government should support the sector and help make it stronger across the country.”

Media contact: Lisa Keller, Communications Officer, Canadian Association of University Teachers; 613-726-5186 (o); 613-222-3530 (c)

*Methodology – the survey was conducted online with 1500 Canadian residents aged 18 and over, from April 24-30. The margin of error for a comparable probability-based random-sample of the same size is +/- 2.53%, 19 times out of 20. The data were weighted according to census data to ensure that the sample matched Canada’s population according to age, gender, educational attainment and region. Totals may not add up due to rounding.

Support affordable child care for all


Starting July 22, tell the world why you support the Affordable Child Care for All plan. What would affordable, quality child care and fair wages for child care workers mean? Take a photo or short video with the words “Child care for all...