Workers Issues in Canada

Canadian autoworkers denounce contract sellout

By Carl Bronski, 29 September 2016

Workers at Canadian plants operated by the Detroit Three auto companies spoke to the WSWS Autoworkers Newsletter of their opposition to contract concessions and the pro-company policies of Unifor.

Liberals’ Canada Post review lays basis for massive assault on postal workers

By Laurent Lafrance, 28 September 2016

Despite making a public show of criticizing the task force’s call for further cuts in service and attacks on workers’ rights, CUPW bears political responsibility for the reactionary report.

Unifor’s big lie exposed

Ontario Liberal government reveals GM investments are not finalized

By Carl Bronski, 27 September 2016

A minister has let slip that Unifor’s much-trumpeted investment “guarantees” at General Motors Canada—“guarantees” it “won” through further concessions—are not a done deal.

Unifor president jeered by hundreds at Oshawa meeting

GM Canada workers narrowly approve sellout deal

By Carl Bronski, 26 September 2016

Having rammed through a concessionary 4-year “pattern agreement” at GM, Unifor will now try to impose it on workers employed at Ford’s and Fiat-Chrysler’s Canadian operations.

GM autoworkers denounce Unifor at ratification meeting

By our reporters, 26 September 2016

Workers at the ratification vote decried the union’s refusal to release the full contract and its collusion with GM management.

Opposition mounts among GM Canada workers

Unifor refuses to release “contract” before Sunday vote

By Carl Bronski, 23 September 2016

Opposition is growing to Unifor’s attempt to ram through a sell-out deal without even providing the supposed “agreement” to General Motors Canada workers.

Unifor touts collaboration with big business Liberals after blocking strike at GM Canada

By Roger Jordan, 23 September 2016

The mutual backslapping between Unifor and the Liberals over the latest sell-out deal must be taken as a warning by workers.

Demand release of full details and two weeks to vote

Contract “framework” at GM Canada continues attack on autoworkers

By Carl Bronski, 21 September 2016

Unifor is trying to rush through a sell-out agreement before GM Canada workers have a chance to study the full details of the still uncompleted deal.

Unifor blocks strike at GM Canada

By Roger Jordan, 20 September 2016

Past promises of “job security,” along with union-backed concessions, have done nothing to stop the destruction of jobs.

UAW balks at solidarity action as Canadian auto talks continue

By Carl Bronski, 15 September 2016

In remarks to the press, UAW President Dennis Williams refused to commit to any specific solidarity action in the event of a strike by autoworkers in Canada.

For a counteroffensive against the auto bosses!

A socialist-internationalist strategy for Canadian Detroit Three workers

By Socialist Equality Party (Canada), 15 September 2016

To prevent Unifor from sabotaging their struggle, auto workers must build new organizations of struggle, democratically controlled by the rank-and-file.

“It’s our turn to reap some of the rewards of record profits”

Canadian autoworkers overwhelmingly approve strike action

By Carl Bronski, 31 August 2016

Voter turnout at many of the union locals was extremely high, reflecting a determined mood of militancy, but the Unifor union has no intention of waging a serious struggle.

Trudeau given hero’s welcome by Unifor bureaucrats

By Roger Jordan, 27 August 2016

Unifor President Jerry Dias lauded the actions of the pro-austerity, pro-war Trudeau government as “a pinnacle start for working people.”

CUPW blocks strike action; touts plans to boost Canada Post’s profits

By Laurent Lafrance, 27 July 2016

The postal workers’ union is thwarting any job action against Canada Post’s sweeping concession demands and promoting the big business Liberal government’s postal review.

Unifor and Detroit Three use job threats to beat back demands of Canadian autoworkers

By Carl Bronski, 26 July 2016

With labour agreements covering 23,500 Canadian autoworkers expiring on September 19, Unifor and the Big Three are preparing to exchange proposals for a new four-year deal.

Canada Post moves to lock out 50,000 workers

By Roger Jordan, 7 July 2016

While Canada Post is pressing for sweeping concessions, the union, CUPW is seeking to isolate the workers and thwart strike action.

Canada Post preparing to lock out 50,000 workers

By Roger Jordan, 23 June 2016

CUPW’s opposition to a genuine struggle against concessions and in defence of public services is demonstrated by its fulsome praise for the Liberal government and its Canada Post “review.”

Canadian autoworkers face fight against threatened plant closings

By Carl Bronski, 22 June 2016

As in the US, the Detroit automakers and the Canadian unions are using the threat of plant closings to ram through concessionary contracts.

Canadian government tables bill for parliamentary “oversight” of spy agencies

By Roger Jordan, 20 June 2016

The oversight committee will provide a “democratic” fig leaf for Canada’s national security apparatus, which in the name of fighting terrorism has been given police-state powers.

Canada: Unifor prepares to cede further concessions to Detroit Three automakers

By Carl Bronski, 15 June 2016

Faced with company threats to further slash auto production in Canada, Unifor is signaling its readiness to impose concession-filled contracts to fatten shareholder profits.

Canadian economy faces sharpest quarterly contraction since financial crisis

By Roger Jordan, 11 June 2016

The Bank of Canada is warning that housing prices in Toronto and Vancouver are unsustainable.

Canadian prime minister endorses Japanese position on South China Sea ahead of G7 summit

By Roger Jordan, 27 May 2016

Canada is deeply implicated in the US-led “pivot” to Asia, and is determined to deepen economic and security ties with Japan.

Postal workers union hails Liberal government’s Canada Post review

By Roger Jordan, 16 May 2016

The CUPW accepts that Canada Post be run as a profit-making business and have sought to prevent a broader struggle in defence of public services.

Canada’s defence policy review prepares major expansion of militarism and war

By Roger Jordan, 29 April 2016

The review “consultation” document argues Canada should expand its close strategic partnership with the US, the most aggressive imperialist power on the planet.

Canada’s NDP dumps party leader Mulcair

By Roger Jordan, 13 April 2016

The broad support within the NDP for Mulcair’s ouster reflects an awareness that he is too compromised to provide the pro-austerity, pro-war NDP with a “progressive” veneer.

Canada’s Liberals debate aid for Bombardier as it slashes 7,000 jobs

By Roger Jordan, 20 February 2016

The urgency of the bailout talks has intensified following the company’s announcement that it is slashing 7,000 jobs, close to 10 percent of its global workforce.

On what program should workers oppose the sellout agreement in Quebec’s public sector?

By the Socialist Equality Party (Canada), 2 February 2016

Quebec public sector workers face a political struggle. In rejecting the sellout agreement touted by the inter-union Common Front, they will be challenging the austerity program of the entire ruling elite.

Montreal: Labour board upholds draconian suspension of 2,000 city workers

By Laurent Lafrance, 15 January 2016

The victimization of the Montreal blue-collar workers is part of the systematic “illegalization” of worker resistance by governments across Canada.

Police agent-provocateurs exposed at Montreal anti-austerity demonstration

By Carl Bronski, 5 January 2016

The Montreal Police Department is strongly defending the actions of an undercover cop who drew his revolver and threatened protesters who had “outed” him.

Quebec: Common Front unions promote sell-out agreement

By Laurent Lafrance, 24 December 2015

The Common Front leaders are seeking to impose a concessionary agreement that will enshrine the massive cuts the Liberals have made to public services.

Montreal suspends 2,400 workers for participating in an “illegal” meeting

By Laurent Lafrance, 19 December 2015

Montreal’s mayor is accusing workers of “bullying” while his administration is attacking wages, pensions and benefits won through generations of struggle.

Quebec: Wave of walkouts against Liberals’ austerity agenda

By Laurent Lafrance, 12 December 2015

The unions are determined to suppress the growing working class challenge to the Liberals’ assault on public services and workers’ wages and pensions.

Quebec public sector unions cancel three-day strike

By Richard Dufour, 1 December 2015

The cancellation was announced at the same time that the unions presented a “counteroffer” that goes a long way toward meeting the Quebec government’s concession demands.

Unifor prepares Canadian autoworkers for more concessions after UAW sellout deals

By Carl Bronski, 30 November 2015

Declarations that “job security” is the top priority of Unifor officials is coded language intended to convey that the union will attempt to push through more wage and benefit cuts.

Quebec unions silent about plans to illegalize workers’ job action

By Laurent Lafrance, 14 November 2015

Hundreds of thousands of Quebec public sector workers mounted one-day strikes this week to protest against the Liberal government’s attack on public services and working conditions.

Quebec repackages concessionary public-sector contract offer

By a WSWS reporting team, 7 November 2015

The unions have been silent on government plans to illegalize public sector worker job action and impose concessionary contracts by decree.

Unifor union in Canada hails UAW-Fiat Chrysler sellout contract in US

By Carl Bronski, 2 November 2015

Officials are claiming that the contract pushed through at Fiat Chrysler, and a tentative agreement at General Motors, validate “grow-in” concessions contracts forced on Canadian workers.

Workers Struggles: The Americas

27 October 2015

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Quebec public sector workers outraged by Liberal concession demands

By a WSWS reporting team, 5 October 2015

Saturday’s demonstration against the Liberals’ austerity agenda and in support of the public sector workers was 150,000-strong.

US Steel Canada issues ultimatum to end pension payments and health benefits

By Carl Bronski, 3 October 2015

Should an Ontario Superior court not rule in its favor, the steel company has threatened that it will shut down the entirety of its operations in Canada by the end of this year.

Canadian election: Militarism and reaction dominate foreign policy debate

By Roger Jordan and Keith Jones, 30 September 2015

The leaders of Canada’s three main parties used Monday’s foreign policy debate to stake their claim as the most capable and determined defenders of Canadian imperialism.

Strong support from Canadian Fiat Chrysler workers for an international struggle

By Jerry White, 24 August 2015

A campaign team distributed the WSWS Autoworker Newsletter to FCA workers in Brampton, Ontario.

WSWS campaigns for unity of US and Canadian autoworkers

By Jerry White, 22 August 2015

A World Socialist Web Site Autoworkers Newsletter reporting team spoke to workers at the General Motors plant in Ontario about the need for an international strategy for autoworkers to fight for jobs and wages.

US, Mexican and Canadian autoworkers face common fight

By David Brown and Jerry White, 12 August 2015

As talks for a new labor contract continue, the US-based automakers are threatening to shift more production to Mexico and other lower wage countries.

Canada: Unions join Liberals, NDP in “Anybody but Conservative” campaign

By Dylan Lubao and Roger Jordan, 23 July 2015

The collaboration between high-level NDP, Liberal and trade union operatives highlights the preparations for a possible coalition government after this October’s federal election.

Canada: Ontario Liberals orchestrate outlawing of teacher strikes

By Carl Bronski, 28 May 2015

While the government claims it is acting to save students’ school year, its real aim is to push through social spending cuts and impose concessionary contracts on teachers.

Unions reaffirm ties to Parti Québécois as it prepares to anoint arch-right winger

By Laurent Lafrance, 14 May 2015

The installation of Pierre-Karl Péladeau as leader of the Parti Québécois will represent a further rightward lurch on the part of the big business, pro-Quebec independence party.

Canada’s Conservatives pledge more austerity and war

By Keith Jones, 24 April 2015

Tuesday’s federal budget is a blueprint for dismantling public services, redistributing wealth to the most privileged, and expanding the military and national-security apparatus.

Unifor Canada preparing to collaborate in slashing auto workers’ pensions

By Carl Bronski, 21 April 2015

Unifor is willing to surrender the last remnants of a defined-benefit pension plan for newly hired workers at the Big Three automakers in Canada.

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14 April 2015

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Quebec Liberals respond to student anti-austerity strike with repression and threats

By Keith Jones, 26 March 2015

The greatest fear and concern of the Canadian ruling class is that the student protests could trigger an eruption of mass working-class struggle.

Canadian oil workers laid off without warning

By Roger Jordan, 19 March 2015

One thousand oil construction workers were fired from their jobs at a remote site in Alberta last week.

Toronto: University strikers denounce union officials

By Carl Bronski, 12 March 2015

Striking education workers at Toronto’s York University have roundly rejected tentative contracts the union had hailed as “historic.”

Toronto university strikes: OFL head conceals unions’ support for Liberals

By Carl Bronski, 9 March 2015

Ontario Federation of Labour head Sid Ryan masqueraded as an opponent of Ontario’s Liberal government at rallies to support 10,000 workers at Toronto’s two main universities.

Unions demobilize Canadian railway workers

By Carl Bronski, 26 February 2015

Unifor reached a pact with CN Rail late Monday evening under threat of a management lockout of 4,800 safety inspectors and rail maintenance workers and Conservative government intervention.

United Steelworkers reaffirm support for big business Parti Quebecois

By Laurent Lafrance, 25 February 2015

The United Steelworkers union is championing Martine Ouellet’s bid to win the leadership of the Parti Quebecois—a pro-austerity big business party.

Citing government threats, Teamsters suppress Canadian Pacific rail strike

By Carl Bronski, 17 February 2015

The Teamsters union capitulated to the Conservative government’s threat of strikebreaking legislation and ordered an end to the strike little more than 36 hours after it began.

Obama administration intervenes against West Coast dock workers

By Jerry White, 16 February 2015

The White House is intervening entirely on behalf of the shipping and terminal owners and, more generally, the corporate and financial elite in the US.

Harper government to criminalize Canadian Pacific railway strike

By Carl Bronski, 16 February 2015

Canada’s Conservative government is set to introduce legislation today outlawing a two-day-old strike by 3,300 CP Rail workers.

Canadian prime minister praises troops as military clashes escalate in Iraq

By Roger Jordan, 2 February 2015

The growing involvement of Canada’s armed forces in ground combat makes a mockery of the government’s claim that the deployment in Iraq is purely a training and assistance mission.

Target CEO’s “golden parachute” exceeds total severance for 17,600 Canadian workers

By Carl Bronski, 31 January 2015

Steinhafel was forced by Target’s Board of Directors to resign after he had spearheaded the expansion of Target stores into Canada, which turned into a fiasco.

Mass job losses unfold in global oil industry

By Gabriel Black, 26 January 2015

Several major oil service companies announced that they would cut significant sections of their workforce, leading to tens of thousands of new layoffs.

Media magnate Péladeau seeks Parti Québécois leadership

By Laurent Lafrance, 20 January 2015

Presenting himself as the “sovereignty candidate,” Péladeau is focusing his campaign around the claim that independence is the best vehicle for the Quebec ruling class to enrich itself.

Oil price plummet roils Canadian economy

By Dylan Lubao, 31 December 2014

Plummeting oil prices are causing Alberta and several other provinces to initiate new austerity drives and Canadian oil producers to slash investments and jobs.

Social inequality in Canada far higher than official statistics claim

By Laurent Lafrance, 8 December 2014

The share of Canada’s national income going to the top 1 percent is 13.3 percent once private corporation income is included.

Death of 15-year-old exposes growing use of child labour by Canadian employers

By Ashley Tseng, 26 November 2014

The fatality at an Alberta gravel-crushing site has exposed the myth that child labour is a problem only in the developing world.

Workers Struggles: The Americas

18 November 2014

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Workers Struggles: The Americas

11 November 2014

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Canada’s government tables bill to expand intelligence agency powers

By Roger Jordan and Keith Jones, 28 October 2014

Canada’s Conservative government tabled legislation yesterday to significantly strengthen the powers of the CSIS.

CLC president helped scuttle BC teachers’ strike

By Carl Bronski, 11 October 2014

Canadian Labour Congress President Hassan Yussuff intervened to shut down the militant strike British Columbia teachers were mounting in defence of public education.

Canada’s government engaged in mass surveillance of protest groups

By Roger Jordan, 8 October 2014

A federal government “emergency response” centre has been systematically collecting information on demonstrations and other protest events.

No to the Quebec Liberals’ Bill 3!

For a working class counteroffensive to defend pensions and public services!

By the Socialist Equality Party (Canada), 24 September 2014

The fight to defend the pensions of Quebec’s municipal workers must become the starting point of a broad working class counteroffensive against the whole ruling class austerity program.

Quebec: Mass protest against gutting of municipal workers’ pensions

By a WSWS reporting team, 23 September 2014

More than 50,000 municipal workers and their supporters marched in Montreal on Saturday.

BC teachers union endorses austerity contract

By Keith Jones, 18 September 2014

The British Columbia Teachers Federation is seeking to scuttle the militant strike the province’s teachers have mounted since mid-June.

British Columbia teachers’ union seeks to scuttle strike

By Keith Jones, 12 September 2014

The BC Teachers’ Federation wants to scuttle the thirteen week-old strike by British Columbia’s 41,000 public school teachers without any of the teachers’ demands having been met.

Canada: BC government escalates attack on striking teachers

By Keith Jones, 9 September 2014

The teachers are fighting to defend public education, which has been ravaged by budget cuts, even as the government increases funding for private schools and cuts corporate taxes.

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2 September 2014

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British Columbia teachers’ strike in danger

By Keith Jones, 30 August 2014

The political and business elite have stepped up their campaign to impose a “settlement” that ensures BC schools remain chronically under-funded and short-staffed.

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26 August 2014

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Quebec’s Bill 3 targets municipal worker pensions

By Louis Girard and Laurent Lafrance, 25 August 2014

Under the pretext of fighting pension plan deficits, the Couillard government is introducing various means to drastically cut the pay and pension checks of municipal workers.

Workers Struggles: The Americas

29 July 2014

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Ontario’s union-backed government to accelerate austerity drive

By Carl Bronski, 3 July 2014

Re-elected with union support, Ontario Liberal Premier Kathleen Wynne has vowed to impose years of concessionary contracts on public sector workers.

Canada: Truckers and rail workers face antistrike laws

By Carl Bronski, 25 March 2014

British Columbia’s Liberal government has introduced legislation to criminalize a strike by truckers at the Port of Vancouver, Canada’s largest port facility.

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11 March 2014

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Ontario Conservatives renew push for labor “reform”

By Carl Bronski, 20 February 2014

The unions have responded to the threat of US-style “right-to-work” laws by appealing to big business to recognize the pivotal role they play in policing the working class.

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11 February 2014

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28 January 2014

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21 January 2014

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Canada Post to end home mail delivery, slash pensions

By Carl Bronski, 30 December 2013

With the full support of the federal Conservative government, Canada Post is slashing mail delivery and mounting a frontal assault on postal workers’ terms of employment.

Canada’s elite eulogizes union boss Jack Munro

By Carl Bronski, 22 November 2013

Munro is best remembered for his role in scuttling a mass mobilization of hundreds of thousands of workers in British Columbia in 1983 that threatened to bring down the right-wing government of Premier Bill Bennett.

Ontario: The EllisDon affair, worker rights, and the political charades at Queen’s Park

By Carl Bronski, 14 September 2013

A leaked email from a leading Conservative legislator reveals that the party fronted an anti-worker law in exchange for donations from the construction firm that stands to benefit.

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6 August 2013

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Canada: US Steel forces locked-out workers to vote on concessions contract

By Carl Bronski, 29 July 2013

Nearly 1,000 workers have been locked out for three months at US Steel's Lake Erie Works in Nanticoke, Ontario.

Canada: New police state measure targets foreign workers

By Dylan Lubao, 1 July 2013

Canada’s Conservative government has enacted draconian policing measures against temporary foreign workers in a political climate of anti-immigrant chauvinism.

Quebec to criminalize two week-old construction strike

By Keith Jones, 1 July 2013

Quebec’s Parti Quebecois government called the provincial legislature into special session Sunday morning to adopt emergency legislation illegalizing a two-week-old strike by 77,000 construction workers.

Quebec: Construction worker strike in grave danger

By Laurent Lafrance, 29 June 2013

Quebec’s construction unions have forced the majority members back to work, without allowing them a vote on the contracts negotiated in their name.

Striking Quebec construction workers speak out

By a WSWS reporting team, 22 June 2013

The World Socialist Web Site spoke with some of the 175,000 striking Quebec construction workers about the issues in their struggle, including big business’ plans to have their hirelings in the Quebec legislature illegalize the strike.

Quebec government threatens to criminalize province-wide construction strike

By Keith Jones, 21 June 2013

Bowing to Parti Québecois government threats, leaders of the Construction Union Alliance announced yesterday that they will resume contract negotiations with Quebec’s building contractors and work with them to quickly end a five day-old province-wide construction strike.

Quebec: 175,000 construction workers mount province-wide strike

By Laurent Lafrance, 19 June 2013

Workers in all sectors of Quebec's construction industry launched an unlimited strike Monday, paralyzing billions of dollars’ worth of building projects across the province.

Elevator companies invoke anti-worker law in bid to break Ontario strike

By Carl Bronski, 14 June 2013

The bargaining representative of Canada’s major elevator companies has invoked an anti-democratic provision in provincial labour law to force many of Ontario’s striking elevator technicians back to work.