This Labour Day weekend, let’s reflect on why decent work must be central for any federal or provincial government. With two more weeks before the September 20 federal election, let’s keep organizing to send as many decent work champions to Ottawa as we can.
Here’s what we expect from Decent Work Champions:
- A federal minimum wage of at least $20 per hour
- At least 10 permanent, employer-paid sick days a year
- An extension of the Canada Recovery Benefit
- The restoration and extension of the $500 weekly income support for the Canada Recovery Benefits and Employment Insurance
- Make our Employment Insurance (EI) system fair
- Full protections for gig workers and ending the practice of misclassifying workers
- Equal pay for part-time, contract, and temp agency workers
- Equal rights for migrants, which means full immigration status for all
- Indigenous justice by implementing the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, ending federal court opposition to settling land claims, and respecting all treaties
Message to our politicians:
Every worker needs 10 paid sick days permanently
Organizing makes a difference. In our last Action Update, we reported that both the federal New Democratic Party and Liberal Party responded to our movement by putting the issue of paid sick days squarely on the political agenda. And just days ago, Ontario Premier Doug Ford extended the Worker Income Protection Benefit till December. This shows that when we fight together, even the most anti-worker government can be forced to move.
Make no mistake, Ford’s temporary 3-day sick day scheme falls short of what we need. Many of us have already used their three days and have nothing as the fourth wave gains momentum. But instead of taking action, Ford prorogued the Ontario legislature, extending his own paid break while doing nothing to make sure we can afford to stay home if we or our loved ones are sick.
Nothing less than 10 permanent paid sick days will be enough to protect us from COVID-19. That’s why our allies in the Decent Work and Health Network launched a new email tool to demand Ontario Premier Doug Ford implement permanent, adequate paid sick days legislation.
Say NO to politicians who back big business
The Ontario Conservative government is working with big corporations like Uber to pass legislation that makes it legal for employers to misclassify their workers as independent contractors. Any move to create a new category of worker with fewer rights will create incentives to deny gig-workers basic labour protections.
Indeed, this week we learned a corporate lobbyist for Uber is a lead author for the federal Conservative Party’s 2021 election platform. (1) Perhaps this explains why Conservative Party leader Erin O’Toole is campaigning to allow Uber and other app-based corporations to opt-out of Employment Insurance and the Canada Pension Plan (2). Under O’Toole’s scheme, instead of the (current) maximum weekly EI benefit of $595.00, the very most an unemployed gig worker could possibly receive is $100 a month ($1,245.36 per year).
Let's not let them get away with it. Please click here to sign and share the Gig Workers' Bill of Rights.
Save the date for the next provincial organizing meeting
The next provincial decent work organizing meeting is Tuesday, September 21 at 7 pm. This meeting will give us a chance to debrief the federal election results and strategize for next steps in the Justice for Workers movement.
Wednesday, September 8
Decent Work Canvass
We’ll be out on the streets talking about why decent work matters federally and provincially. Stop by to get your #Elxn44 posters and sign the petition for decent work for all.
Brampton outreach at Bramalea Terminal | 4 pm to 5:30 pm
RSVP and share on Facebook
Davenport outreach at Dufferin TTC Station | 4 pm to 5:30 pm
RSVP and share on Facebook
Sunday, September 12
Brampton Justice for Workers Picnic
Chinguacousy Park | 1 pm to 3 pm
Decent work is the foundation of safe and healthy communities. That means paid sick days, decent wages, fair schedules, and stable work for all. But can we afford decent work? Join us for this picnic where we'll talk about what it would take it would take. Bring your friends, family and your questions!
Sunday, September 26
Brampton local organizing meeting (in-person)
Warehouse Workers' Centre | 12 pm - 1 pm
Join us to plan the next steps in the fight for Justice for Workers in Brampton.
Wednesday, September 29
Etobicoke Justice for Workers outdoor teach-in
Michael Power Park | 6 pm - 7 pm
Got a bad boss? Got questions about your rights at work? Want to join the fight for decent work? Then let's talk! Join us for this outdoor teach-in to learn about your rights at work and how to defend them.
Please click here to RSVP or RSVP and share on Facebook
- See: Erin O’Toole’s Plan For Gig Workers Was ‘Carbon Copied’ From Uber’s Corporate Lobbyists
- See: Page 42 of the Conservative Party Platform