Dear local unions:
We know you have been following the day-to-day developments of the COVID-19 pandemic in our country and all over the world. We are seeing the impact on workers and their families and we would like to update you on a number of measures and actions being undertaken by your national union.
First, we want to ensure the well-being of Unifor members and staff as we build our plan to navigate this pandemic. We are concerned about the health and safety and livelihoods of our members and of all workers across Canada, and we believe that we have a role to play in curbing the spread of this pandemic.
In the past few weeks, we have written to the Government of Canada recommending changes to Employment Insurance provisions, some of which were implemented this week. We are still calling on all governments to implement 14 paid sick days for those workers who are quarantined or in self-isolation. You can see our other demands for governments here.
Unifor is monitoring the impact of the pandemic across sectors and workplaces of our union and as a result our demands to protect workers will likely grow.
Our union has made some decisions and we are taking the following actions:
We are encouraging local unions to think through upcoming activities, and to take the following actions:
The above guidelines will be in effect until March 30 and further communication and updates will be distributed as needed.
We know that the situation is evolving and that it may be difficult to plan ahead. We want to express to our local unions that we are here to support you, to demand protections for working people, and to work with you in the challenges that will confront us in the coming weeks. We want to support our members and the broader Unifor community through this pandemic and we want to create conditions under which everyone can remain safe and healthy.
We are asking you to communicate with the following contacts to help track our activities, and to share questions, concerns, reports, or suggestions: Lana Payne (@email) or Renaud Plante (@email) in Québec.
Unifor has launched a hub for member information about the pandemic at unifor.org/COVID19 and encourages members to check the site regularly for updates.