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Unifor members recognized at CALM awards

Unifor -

Unifor’s Communications Department was recognized with two awards at this year’s Canadian Association of Labour Media (CALM) conference on June 8 in Winnipeg.

UNIFOR won the “Best Use of Social Media” award for its groundbreaking use of FaceBook Live to stream events from picket lines in Goderich, Thunder Bay and Gander.

“I am proud of the Unifor team for being recognized for using modern tools to bring the fight against scabs to members across the country,” said Jerry Dias, National President.

Unifor’s aggressive communications strategy has seen a 600 per cent increase in engagement on Facebook by increasing the use of videos to help inspire and mobilize members of the union and the general public, and put national and international public pressure on employers who try to bust unions.

Unifor also won the “Fighting Oppression Award” for a communications initiative that raises consciousness and contributes to struggles against racism, sexism, homophobia, ableism and other forms of oppression and discrimination: The workers with disAbilities video showcases the contributions workers with disabilities make on the job and in their local unions.  The production was the first of its kind for workers with disabilities in Unifor and brought to light the diversity of disabilities that exist and how their workplaces are adapted.

Since its release, the video helped situate disability rights and inclusion as central to the equity work of the union and uses an intersectional lens when looking at disability.

Unifor locals were well-represented at the annual conference, with members from Locals  1-S, 88, 112, 594, 1285, 2002 and 5555 present, as well as national staff. Information about all of Unifor winners is available here.

CALM brings together more than 200 labour unions across Canada to strategize and better communicate with members, campaigns and issues.

Local unions of all sizes benefit from CALM membership through resources, education, training and support. For more information about membership, or to join, click here.

Bulletin from UWOSA

University of Western Ontario Staff Association -

New and Improved UWOSA Website Launches on Monday June 10, 2019

Brydges Design has completed the re-design of the UWOSA website, the Stewards beta-tested, and it will be live on Monday, June 10, 2019! All information and UWOSA members will be migrated over the weekend, so please refrain from going to the website until Monday June 10, 2019.

What has improved? The Ad Hoc Communications Committee listened to you and has given each page a more modern look, the interfaces of the pages works better with mobile devices, includes a search function, and has the capability of event registration online (no more paper luncheon tickets!).

There is also a section for our Stewards and Executive Officers.

Usernames and passwords for the new site are the same as those currently in use for the existing website (i.e. you do not need a new username or password; the ones you use to access the current UWOSA website will work with the new one).

Please note if you have friends who are on a secondment outside of UWOSA, they will be migrated across, just blocked from the site until they return to their original position in UWOSA.

If you have any questions after June 10, 2019, please email info@uwosa.ca.

Jen Heidenheim, Chair

Ad Hoc Communications Committee

Columbia Store Invitation Now Available

UWOSA is invited to shop at our Columbia Sportswear Company Employee Store from June 7 -30, 2019.

To learn more visit the Member Area - Columbia Sportsware Invitation

UWOSA Floating Holidays Reminder

As per Article 21, UWOSA members are entitled to two floating holidays to be used by June 30, 2019.

Floating holidays are meant to be used for unexpected events outside of one’s control where a member would need to be absent from work in order to attend to the matter (ex. Car breaks down, water pipe in house breaks, etc.).

Keep in mind that UWOSA floating holidays may not carry forward to the next year. If you do not know if you have any floating holidays left for this collective agreement year, please ask your supervisor. Effective July 1, 2019 you will receive two float days to be used before June 30, 2020.  

If you have any questions, please contact your Area Steward or the UWOSA office at info@uwosa.ca

Unifor Area Councils turn to setting a federal workers’ agenda

Unifor -

Unifor members in Ontario and in Nova Scotia meet to set a worker’s agenda and build stronger connections between local unions ahead of the federal election.

Area Council meetings kicked off on June 4 in Windsor, Ontario and Sydney, Nova Scotia, continuing on in Antigonish.

“The federal election is fast-approaching, and the time is now to set our vision for a better, more equal country that puts workers ahead of corporations,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President. “Unifor members are already sending that message loud and clear. We want strong leadership to stand with workers.”

The room was buzzing with excitement and determination as members worked together to solve the issues facing workers in Canada today, from cuts to public services to job loss and outsourcing. Focusing on solutions, members identified real ways that federal parties can lead in the upcoming election, by addressing corporate tax loopholes and making Canada more fair and equitable.

Lana Payne, Unifor Atlantic Regional Director, spoke with members in Sydney, commenting “the only way to protect, and improve, our quality of life here in Atlantic Canada is to elect a government that will truly invest in good jobs and public services and protect and enhance workers’ rights.”

Meanwhile, in Windsor, Naureen Rizvi, Ontario Regional Director, outlined the dramatic cuts that only one year of Conservative government have brought to Ontario, saying, “Cuts to education, cuts to health care, and cuts to workers’ rights. We didn’t vote for this, and we deserve better. But to get better, we have to fight for it.”

The election is already proving to be one where some politicians use scare tactics, and divisive language to isolate working people. By coming together in union halls across the country, Unifor members resist this division, and build working class solidarity.

Upcoming meetings are currently scheduled at the locations below. Members and Local Unions should stay tuned as these spaces grow across the country.

  • Thursday, June 6, Halifax - 5:00 p.m. at Unifor Halifax office (63 Otter Lake Court, Halifax)
  • Monday, June 17 - Kitchener – 5:00 pm at Unifor 1106 hall (600 Wabanaki Drive, Kitchener)
  • Monday, June 24 – Durham Region – 5:00 pm at Unifor Local 1090 (140 Hunt Street, Ajax)
  • Tuesday, June 25 – Thunder Bay – 6:00 pm Unifor 1075 hall (112 W Gore Street, Thunder Bay)
  • Tuesday, July 2 – Ottawa – 5:00 pm at St. Anthony’s Soccer Club ( 523 St Anthony St. Ottawa)
  • Wednesday, July 3 – London – 5:00 pm at Unifor Local 27 (606 First Street, London)
  • Thursday, July 4 – GTA/Peel – 5:00 pm Unifor Local 112 hall (30 Tangiers Rd, North York)
  • Monday, July 8 – Sudbury – 5:00 pm Unifor 598 hall (2550 Richard Lake Drive, Sudbury)

CAUT statement on the report on missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls


(Ottawa – June 6, 2019) The Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT) calls for action on the 231 recommendations contained in the report on the national inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls (MMIWG) released Monday.

“This report makes it clear that Indigenous women, girls and Two-Spirit people have suffered from disproportionate rates of violence through our country’s history, with many being murdered or simply vanishing,” says CAUT executive director David Robinson. “The unacceptable gender-based violence they continue to face is shameful, and we urge the federal government to move forward on implementing the report’s Calls for Justice.”

The report caps over two years of cross-country hearings including testimony from some 2,000 survivors of violence, their families, and experts, and details the trauma and marginalization that have devastated many Indigenous communities.

“CAUT applauds the bravery and activism that inspired and drove the inquiry,” Robinson adds. “Now, we need to make the necessary legal and social changes not only so that no one suffers such injustice and inequity in the future, but also so that the wounds of the past are healed.”