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Unifor marks Labour Day with celebration of worker empowerment

TORONTO —Unifor, Canada’s largest private sector union, celebrates worker empowerment as members across the country gather to mark Labour Day. 

“Unifor is celebrating the fighting spirit that workers are courageously displaying across our union, across the country and all over the world,” said Unifor National President Lana Payne. “We work our entire lives as trade union activists for the kind of moment we find ourselves in right now. A moment where we can build worker power.” 

Unifor National President Lana Payne says 'Quiet Quitting' not enough. Workers must roar.

There is no question that the pandemic has created a new workscape. 

Despite a textbook scenario for workers to demand better from their bosses, wages remain low – relative to rising inflation – benefits are meagre and pension plans elusive. 

Despite ballooning profits and claims of labour shortages, most workers still find themselves on the losing end. 

Unifor’s Lana Payne to Minister Alghabra: Listen to workers to fix airport delays

TORONTO- Unifor National President Lana Payne wrote to Minister Alghabra today to offer clear solutions to the issues plaguing Canada’s airports with cancellations and delays.

“Aviation workers are listening intently to government, and so far the Minister has not shared an accurate description of the problem or common sense solutions. Aviation employers have cut jobs and continue to drive down wages in the industry, and it’s up to the federal government to change the rules to protect workers and travelers,” said Payne.

Letter to Minister Alghabra from Lana Payne

Honourable Omar Alghabra, P.C., M.P. Minister of Transport

Dear Minister Alghabra,

I am writing today to discuss the grave situation that continues to unfold at Canada’s airports.

Your deposition at the Parliamentary Committee on Transport, Infrastructure and Communities on August 19 2022 was eye opening. The narrative of the opposition that nothing has been done to alleviate the issue is simply not true. The government narrative that enough has been done is not true either.

Lana Payne's Labour Day Message

Check out Lana Payne's message to Unifor members, and all workers, ahead of Labour Day.
 
"Friends, now is the time to build worker pow

Vast mobilization in support of Bell Technical Solutions members

Montreal, August 31, 2022 – To the sound of whistles and trumpets, more than a hundred members of Quebec and Ontario local unions, FTQ-affiliated unions, FTQ regional councils as well as Alexandre Boulerice, NDP MP for Rosemont-La Petit-Patrie, gathered yesterday morning in front of Bell Media’s offices in Montreal, in support of workers at Bell Technical Solutions.

Unifor reaches tentative agreement with Loomis Express

TORONTO––Loomis Express workers in eight provinces have reached a tentative agreement with the company, avoiding a strike set to begin after midnight tonight. 

“This tentative agreement leverages the power of a national union to set and raise standards across the country while allowing for provincial nuances in the operations," said Lana Payne, Unifor National President."I congratulate the bargaining committee for coming together to reach a deal that addresses key concerns of members.”

The scorned of MABE regroup to mark the 8th anniversary of the bankruptcy of their ex-employer

MABE retirees, or MABE scorned as they like to be called, gathered in front of the former MABE plant in Montreal on August 25 to mark the sad anniversary of their former employer's bankruptcy. Locals from the greater Montreal area also joined to show them that they are not alone in their fight and that their Unifor family is behind them.

Retirees and active employees lost the equivalent of 22% of their pension as well as the protection of group insurance and life insurance due to the bankruptcy in August 2014.

Loomis Express workers serve strike notice

TORONTO–Loomis Express workers in eight provinces have served strike notice, with almost 1,500 Unifor members set to begin legal strike action in their respective time zones at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday August 31, 2022.

“This is yet another example of a huge corporation squeezing employees by shuffling work between subsidiaries or contracting out to avoid providing workers with decent full-time jobs,” said Lana Payne, Unifor National President. “These members work in the fast-growing courier sector but many remain limited to precarious part-time work.” 

GDI Services workers strike over wages and benefits

Some 70 workers at GDI Services – which provides cleaning services for Durham College’s Whitby and Oshawa campuses in Ontario – went on strike on Wed., Aug. 24, 2022.

“During the pandemic, these workers were asked to put their health and lives on the line to keep educational facilities clean,” said Unifor National President Lana Payne. “They deserve a respectful living wage and economic dignity.”

First Canada workers in Vernon and Salmon Arm issue strike mandate

VERNON/SALMON ARM, BC—Unifor Local 114 members at First Canada in Vernon and the Shuswap Communities, in B.C. have voted overwhelmingly to strike if a fair collective agreement cannot be negotiated in the coming weeks.

“As we saw in the Sea to Sky region, transit workers are determined to achieve collective agreements that reflect their contribution to local economies,” said Gavin McGarrigle, Unifor Western Regional Director.

Bell Clerical ratifies new four-year deal

TORONTO –Unifor’s Bell Clerical and Associated Employees Bargaining Committee ratified a four-year deal with Bell Canada on Thurs., Aug. 18, 2022.

“My congratulations to the bargaining committee for fighting for our members and for making progress during a very difficult round of bargaining,” said Lana Payne, Unifor National President.

Letter to the Honourable Doug Ford

August 17, 2022

SENT VIA EMAIL @email 

The Honourable Doug Ford
Premier of Ontario

Dear Premier Ford,

I would like to congratulate you on your recent re-election as Premier of Ontario. I write to you today to raise our grave concerns as we watch our health care system literally crumble around us. 

Durham Regional Transit workers ratify new collective agreement

OSHAWA—Wage gains and new positions are highlights of a new collective agreement ratified Sunday by Unifor Local 222 members working at Durham Regional Transit (DRT).

“The committee achieved improvements to transit workers’ work-life balance,” said Len Poirier, Unifor National Secretary-Treasurer. “This contract looks to the future of public transportation in Durham from the perspective of job security and improving the experience for community members.”

Unifor Local 681 signs tentative agreement with Manitoba Hydro

WINNIPEG—The bargaining committee for Unifor members at Manitoba Hydro have signed a tentative agreement.

“Unifor members on the front-lines of gas services have earned a fair contract,” said Lana Payne, Unifor National President. “Public services workers were essential to the economy during COVID-19 and their contracts must reflect that.”

Details of the tentative agreement will be released following the membership ratification votes to be held during the coming week.

Members of Unifor Local 681 have been on rotating strikes since June 17, 2022.

Consumers should direct their anger at Canada’s CEOs, not its workers

We all want this pandemic to be over, and life to get back to normal. I get that.

It couldn’t be clearer, however, that we are nowhere near the end. Health-care systems are at the breaking point, and some public health restrictions are being reintroduced.

As we all saw, COVID laid bare some of the worst problems facing our society: an escalating housing crisis; underfunded health care; a deep and structural racism oppressing Indigenous, Black and other marginalized people.

Celebrating Unifor - New Video

It’s been two years since we gathered, and even then it was an online summit. Convention 2022 opened last week with this look back at the fightbacks, the campaigns and the solidarity of our members and celebrate the work we did together.

Lana Payne closes convention with Unifor united

Unifor came together this week in solidarity and strength, ensuring this union will continue to be a force to be reckoned with, National President Lana Payne said as she wrapped Unifor’s fourth Constitutional Convention.

“We have truly come together this week to move our union forward,” said Payne, the first woman to be National President.

“You have shown that it is the union - all of us together - can take on the challenges we face as workers.

Bell Atlantic Bargaining Bulletin Update #9

Dear Members,

The union and the employer will not be able to meet on the week of August 15-18.  This delay was forced by schedule misalignment between the parties.

Your bargaining team will instead engage with the company, along with the assistance of a federal conciliator, in Halifax, Nova Scotia beginning on Tuesday, September 6, 2022.

The Bell ACL unit is still in its conciliation period. Your bargaining committee has not yet received a tentative agreement.

Unifor members rally for Ashgrove workers

“So-so-solidarity.”

In keeping with Unifor’s Convention theme, “Together,” delegates showed solidarity with striking workers at the Ash Grove cement plant in Joliette, Que., who have been locked out for nearly 15 months, by marching in downtown Toronto on Thurs., Aug. 11, 2022.

Labour minister promises action on harassment

Labour Minister Seamus O’Regan announced at Unifor’s Convention that all the provinces and territories now support an ILO (write out what ILO stands for in first mention) resolution on harassment in the workplace, a necessary step for the federal government to adopt the resolution.

“We’ve been working to get support of all provinces and territories for its ratification. We have that now, and I’ll be working with the Minister of Foreign Affairs as we look to move to the next stage,” O’Regan said Thursday morning.

Unifor unveils 29 recommendations to boost Canada’s auto sector

TORONTO—Unifor members endorsed a new auto policy at the union’s Constitutional Convention that sets out a comprehensive vision  to transform Canada into a global leader in electric vehicle production.

“We have all the ingredients necessary to transition to electric vehicle manufacturing and grow our economy, while creating good union jobs and reducing Canada’s carbon footprint all at the same time,” said Lana Payne, at her first news conference as Unifor National President after yesterday’s election.

The CAMI story: ICE to BEV

Canada’s auto sector has seen more than $16 billion in EV supply chain investments  repositioning Canada as a major player in both gas-powered cars and components as well as the electric vehicles of the future.