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Peace, Justice and Solidarity

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As 2018 comes to a close, we are sending our warmest greetings and our most sincere thanks to all CUPE members.

We have much to celebrate this year. CUPE locals have won victories for our members at the bargaining table, our activists have helped elect progressive politicians, and our union has led the fight for fairness and respect in our workplaces and in our communities.

The year has also had its challenges. Perhaps most significantly, we have seen the growth of right-wing rhetoric, and increasing intolerance and hatred, across Canada and indeed around the world.

But we have also seen our union, and our allies, rise to the occasion. CUPE members continue to stand up for their rights, for diversity, for inclusion, for equality. As a union, with over 665,000 members, we have never been stronger. We are strong because of activists and leaders like you.

In the spirit of peace, justice, and solidarity, we wish you a wonderful holiday season and very best for 2019.

In solidarity,

Mark Hancock – National President
Charles Fleury – National Secretary/Treasurer

Stop Workplace Sexual Violence

CUPE is committed to addressing and preventing sexual violence at work and recognizes that everyone has a right to work in a safe environment.

Sexual violence is any act targeting a person’s sexuality, gender expression or gender identity that is committed, attempted or threatened against a person without their consent. Sexual violence includes harassment, which is offensive behaviour that a reasonable person would consider unwelcome.

Sexual violence at work is a serious matter and has an impact on all members of the workplace and the union. The employer is responsible for addressing and responding to workplace sexual violence. The union plays a critical role in making sure the employer meets their responsibilities.

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CUPE sends solidarity and sympathies to Oshawa auto workers

The Canadian Union of Public Employees is sending solidarity and sympathies to the workers and families impacted by GM’s decision to shutter its plant in Oshawa.

“This decision is devastating for the workers, their families, and so many communities around Oshawa and the Durham region who have built General Motors into what it is today,” said CUPE National President Mark Hancock.

“Oshawa auto workers are going to put up the fight of their lives to save their jobs and their communities, and CUPE will be there to support them,” said CUPE National Secretary-Treasurer Charles Fleury.

Hancock says the federal government must step up immediately to support workers and their families, and demand accountability from GM. “A decade ago, Canadian taxpayers stepped in with billions of dollars to save GM,” Hancock noted. “GM can’t just take a bailout and run a few years later. The government of Canada owes it to Oshawa and to all Canadians to demand accountability from GM.”

Statement by CUPE National President Mark Hancock and National Secretary-Treasurer Charles Fleury on the Liberal government’s back-to-work legislation

OTTAWA, Nov. 22, 2018 /CNW/ – Canada’s striking postal workers have the full support of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) and its 665,000 members nationwide.

During the 2015 election campaign, Justin Trudeau called out the Harper government for “rolling back many fundamental labour rights that affect workers’ ability to organize freely, bargain collectively in good faith, and work in a safe environment.” Yet here we are today, watching the Liberal government under Prime Minister Trudeau legislating striking postal workers back to work.

His predecessor, Stephen Harper, did the same in 2011, but with one important difference: at least Stephen Harper allowed for a debate in Parliament. The Liberal government’s draconian procedural measures have ensured its back-to-work legislation will sail through the House of Commons in a matter of a few hours.

Postal workers have been on rotating strikes to demand equal pay and safer workplaces. But rather than allow them the opportunity to collectively bargain for fairness and safety in their jobs, causes the Liberals claim to support, the government has come down squarely in the corner of management. This decision from Trudeau and Employment Minister Patty Hajdu sets a dangerous precedent and sends a clear message to employers everywhere: don’t bother bargaining, we’ll bail you out.

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OMERS Update

To all OMERS Plan Members:
After an extensive Comprehensive Plan Review the OMERS SC Board voted on the proposed Plan changes.

Of the 6 proposals that were being considered, two were approved by the OMERS SC board.
Removing the 35-year service cap and the ability for Paramedics to negotiate into the NRA 60 pension plan. Enhanced Part Time enrollment did not pass.

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Premier Ford betrays Ontario’s working people and their families

TORONTO, ON (October 23, 2018) – Reducing wages and gutting protections for our provinces lowest paid workers proves Premier Ford is only interested in helping his corporate friends and has no problem hurting working people and their families to do it, says CUPE Ontario President Fred Hahn.

Hahn’s comments come following today’s announcement that Ford is not only cancelling the increase to minimum wage but is also reversing the legislation that reduced the ability of employers to exploit part-time, contract and temp agency workers. Ford is also cancelling the two paid sick days and fair notification of schedule changes for non-unionized workers.

“Scrapping protections for the most vulnerable and precarious workers in our province is not the actions of a government that is truly ‘for the people’. Today’s actions will hurt thousands of working people, hurt their families and it will ensure that Ontario’s economy only benefits those at the very top,” says Hahn. “All across Ontario, workers and their families are struggling. They used to have money at the end of week, now they have week at the end of the money. If the Premier really wants to protect workers, he will rethink his plan.”

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Doug Ford government cancels funding for three new GTA university campuses

Ontario’s Progressive Conservative government is cancelling funding for three university campuses in the Toronto area, blaming the province’s poor finances.

Merrilee Fullerton, Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities, said the government is no longer in a position to fund the three satellite campuses in Markham, Milton and Brampton owing to the province’s “new fiscal restraints.”

The campuses were set to open in 2021 and 2022 and serve a total of 8,000 students.

Ms. Fullerton cited a review of the province’s finances that found the deficit has more than doubled to $15-billion this year. During the provincial election campaign, Doug Ford, now Premier, also promised a line-by-line audit of government spending.

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Conservatives, Liberals, Boost Big Business at Injured Workers’ Expense

TORONTO, ON – The Ford government announced today they are slashing the amount businesses will pay to support the insurance system that protects injured workers, instead of making investments to ensure the program adequately provides injured workers with the support they deserve.

The Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) was created over a century ago to provide workers who are injured, made sick, or killed on the job with supports, including an income, to help them and their families. Today’s announcement of an across-the-board average premium reduction to employers of 29.8 % in 2019 comes after the WSIB has already cut employer rates by 10% in the past few years.

“For too long Liberal and PC governments alike have failed to support injured workers with an adequate workers’ compensation system,” Fred Hahn, President of CUPE Ontario, stated in response to the government’s announcement. “Benefits paid out to injured workers have been on the decline for years. Far too many injured workers are being denied access to benefits of any kind or aren’t even covered by WSIB in the first place. Thousands of injured workers are now living in poverty in Ontario. Ford is simply speeding up the Liberals’ work on reducing support to injured workers.”

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