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Open Letter to Unifor Local Unions, Activists, and Staff

Dear Unifor Local Unions, Activists and Staff:

On August 23, our union's National Executive Board (NEB) adopted a statement on Comprehensive Workplace Immunization Programs and Mandatory Vaccinations. In this statement, our union took a position in favour of workplace mandatory vaccine policies as one important tool, among others, to keep workers safe, to sustain a reopening of Canada’s economy and put an end to this pandemic.

Climate policy must make workers a priority

Unifor’s newest submission to the federal government has one core premise in mind: No worker should experience economic collapse in the face of climate change either from climate events or the progression towards an environmentally sustainable world. 

Unifor mobile app discontinued on October 1, 2021

With the new mobile friendly Unifor website fully launched, the mobile app is now obsolete and is being discontinued.

The app was launched in 2018 to help Unifor members and allies stay up-to-date on their smartphones with the latest news and events, but now the app has become redundant as the new website that launched last month is optimized for mobile devices.

Unifor’s new site was designed with a mobile-first strategy to ensure that it could function as a singular online portal to all news, videos, events, campaigns, and other resources. 

Unifor confronts harassment in journalism

TORONTO – The escalating harassment faced by journalists – particularly online and targeting women and workers of colour – is absolutely unacceptable and Unifor is putting together a major project to address the issue.

“Unifor condemns this behaviour. No journalist should have to face the kind of threatening, misogynist and racist harassment that has become so commonplace,” said Unifor National President Jerry Dias.

Affordable justice with the Unifor Legal Services Plan

The Unifor Legal Services Plan was created to provide quality personal legal services at affordable prices to eligible members of Unifor and their spouses and dependents.

“Thanks to the negotiated support of more than two dozen employers, the Legal Services Plan delivers excellent legal services at an affordable price,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President.

Bell’s unwarranted position on Maintenance of Activities delays opening of Atlantic and Clerical negotiations

Bargaining Update: Bell Aliant and Bell Clerical Negotiations Delayed

The kickoff dates for both Bell Clerical and Bell Aliant negotiations are delayed because of the company’s attempt to use the Maintenance of Activities provisions of the Canada Labour Code, 87.4(1), to take away workers’ power.  Bell Clerical was set to begin on Wednesday, October 13, 2021 and Atlantic was scheduled for Thursday, October 14, 2021.

Young Workers Profiled: Luis Castro

Luis Castro is a member of Local 62 and works at the Hotel Intercontinental in Montreal. He talks to us about retirement security and the reasons why young people should get involved in collective bargaining.

What is the main issue facing young workers?

In my sector, there were quite a few layoffs due to the pandemic, so of course access to good jobs is a very important issue. People want stable, well-paid jobs and they want to be recognized for their skills.

Young Workers Profiled: Jamie Chilcott

Jamie Chilcott is a young member of Unifor Local 88. He started working as a student at CAMI, the General Motors plant in Ingersoll Ontario, in 2010, and reached full-time status in 2013. As a father of two young children, Jamie shares just how much of a daily challenge access to child care can be for young workers.

Labour Market Insights - September 2021 Report

September’s job numbers are out and Unifor’s Labour Market Insights report shows another 157,100 jobs were added, unemployment fell to 6.9% and the participation recovered to pre-pandemic levels at 65.5%.

Unifor celebrates Continuing Care Assistant Week in Nova Scotia

Unifor proudly celebrates Continuing Care Assistant (CCA) Week, Oct 11-15, 2021, organized by the Health Association of Nova Scotia (HANS) as part of Continuing Care Month.

"The amount of compassion and hard work provided by CCAs should not only be recognized over a week but every single day of the year," said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President. "To all our CCA members, thank you for all you do in protecting our most vulnerable in society. Your resilience and grit during the pandemic should not go unnoticed."

Unifor welcomes new long-term care funding in Ontario

TORONTO — Unifor welcomes the Ontario government’s announcement to provide an additional $270 million this year for long-term care homes to help increase direct care for residents to three hours by the end of the fiscal year.

World Day for Decent Work Artwork

A series of affirmations to unite the young and old

To mark this year’s World Day for Decent Work, we enlisted a freelance graphic artist by the name of Hana Shafi, also known as Frizz Kid, to help us develop three collective affirmations from a young workers’ perspective.

Shafi is known for her colourful and vibrant style and those elements are on full display in the artwork she created for us.

Here are details about each affirmation and what it means:

Young Workers Profiled: Tanika Chaisson

Tanika Chaisson is a member of Unifor local 707-A in Fort McMurray, Alberta and a member of the Prairie's Young Workers Committee member. She spoke to us about the importance of increasing the number of young workers who are unionized.

What do you think is an important issue for young workers today?

Young workers are facing many challenges, not just one. They are all a piece of a much larger puzzle. If I were to choose one, I would say unionization rates in Canada and across the globe.

Young Workers Profiled: Japna Sidhu-Brar

Japna Sidhu-Brar is a member of local 4005 and works at the Discovery Centre in Halifax. She is Unifor's Atlantic Racial Justice Liaison, and she spoke to us about why she thinks climate change is one of the most important issues facing young workers today.

Unifor Local 2301 ratifies new contract with Rio Tinto

After 69 days on the picket line at the Kitimat/Kemano aluminum smelter, members of Unifor Local 2301 have ratified a new collective agreement with the international mining giant Rio Tinto.

“When you take on a company with deep pockets like Rio Tinto, you’ve got to have outstanding solidarity and a determination to get what you deserve,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President. “I congratulate Local 2301 on a successful and hard-fought victory.” 

Brink’s members improve wages in new contract

Members at Brink’s Canada Ltd. in Ontario and British Columbia ratified a new collective agreement that improves wages, incentives and premiums, and includes new advocacy measures.

“This new contract contains significant wage gains for these essential workers while also incorporating social activism with the creation of a Women’s Advocate position, and the additions of a moment of silence on the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women and the Day for Truth and Reconciliation as a holiday,” said Unifor National President Jerry Dias.

Unifor mourns the loss of Local 111 member, killed on the job

Unifor member Charanjit Parhar was killed on the job on Sept. 28, 2021 at Coast Mountain Bus Company in downtown Vancouver where he was a transit operator for more than 20 years.

The loss of Parhar was felt intensely by his fellow Unifor members, who knew him as a friendly and humble co-worker who always had a smile on his face.

“Everyone at Local 111 is grieving this terrible loss. Charanjit was loved in the workplace and we extend our most sincere condolences to his family,” said Balbir Mann, Unifor Local 111 president.

Joie Warnock retires

Dear members,

I want to recognize the outstanding achievements of my friend and life-long labour activist Joie Warnock on her retirement from Unifor.

Young Workers Profile: Nikki Lyons-Macfarlane

In a lead up to the World Day for Decent Work on October 7, 2021, we are speaking to five Unifor young workers to learn more about them and the issues they want to see addressed to ensure a bright and equitable future for all.

Rise up for long-term care rally

As the Ontario Legislature opened on October 4, long-term care activists came together to send a clear message to MPPs: No more broken promises. No more substandard care. We demand real action now!

Rejecting the PERT Fishery Recommendations; Protecting Rural NL

By Lisa Smith, FFAW-Unifor Policy Lead

In the Premier’s Economic Recovery Team Report (better known as the PERT Report or Greene Report), Dame Moya Green recommends corporate concentration in the fisheries as a necessary measure for our economic recovery, but the fishery is already thriving. The industry continues to fuel a prosperous inshore sector with lucrative species, essential employment, and economic benefits that flow to communities throughout the province. Changing that will remove value from Newfoundland and Labrador. 

Young workers are concerned about their future and ready to take action

From across Canada, a dozen members 35 years-old and younger met for an informal Zoom gathering on Sunday, Oct. 3. 2021.

Despite it being a relaxed event, the tone got serious as members opened up about the issues they are facing as young workers.   

Work-life balance, high cost of child care, systemic barriers, employment equity and pension were just a few of the issues that were brought up.

International Day of Older Persons Statement 2021

On October 1st we celebrate the International Day of Older Persons.

First observed in 1991, the General Assembly of the United Nations designated this day to draw attention to the important contribution of seniors and to changing demographics: the greying of the population, or the "age of aging."

The 2021 Theme: Digital Equity for all Ages

Unifor urges Premier Ford to protect COVID heroes from anti-vaccine protesters

TORONTO — Unifor is calling on the Ontario government to enact legislation to ban anti-vaccine protests near hospitals, schools, daycares and COVID-19 immunization and testing clinics.

“Anti-vaccine protests not only put the health and safety of our members but the entire community at risk,” said Unifor National President Jerry Dias. “These COVID heroes have sacrificed so much for the betterment of society and to have a group of people intimidating them while working is unacceptable. Our COVID heroes deserve better.”

No more stolen sisters

October 4 is a day to honour murdered and missing Indigenous women, girls and two-spirited persons (MMIWG2S) while showing love and support for their families.

Unifor stands united with the families of MMIWG2S and calls on the Trudeau government to place the implementation of the Calls for Justice of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls at the top of the legislative agenda.

Unifor reaches tentative agreement with Brink's Canada Ltd.

TORONTO–Unifor has negotiated a tentative collective agreement with Brink's Canada Ltd. on behalf of more than 900 workers in British Columbia and Ontario.

"These armoured car drivers and messengers continued to provide services to banks, stores and ATM’s to keep our economy running throughout the pandemic,” said Unifor National President Jerry Dias. "I congratulate representatives from 12 Unifor locals on uniting to negotiate improved conditions for workers across both provinces.