Labour News Update: July 4 2016

13512054_1229687757075800_8972886371866806096_nCanada Post dispute | Quebec nursing home workers strike | OPSEU college drive | Fort Mac firefighters | Essex County library strike | US Steel | NAFTA unpopular | Goodlife Fitness union drive | Asbestos cancer costs | BC park rangers | Korean union leader jailed | Toyota drive fails | CN’s runaway train | Injured workers denied

Canada Post

Seven Myths About Canada Post
Doug Nesbitt and Dan Darrah,
June 30 2016

Serial offenders of pay equity
CTV News, July 3 2016

AFL calls on Prime Minister to fire Canada Post CEO
Alberta Federation of Labour, June 30 2016

Letter to a Future Postie
CUPW, June 30 2016

South African firefighters to be paid according to Alberta laws
CBC News
June 29 2016

Nearly 300 firefighters from South Africa who came to Canada last month to help fight the massive forest fire in the Fort McMurray area have been paid according to Alberta labour laws, the government said Wednesday. Officials with the South African agency Working on Fire have confirmed for the Alberta government that the workers have been paid.

Only one in four Canadians approve NAFTA
Angus Reid
June 27 2016

More than two decades after the ratification of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), only one-in-four Canadians say the deal has been a net benefit to Canada, while fully one-third want it renegotiated – three times as many as say the pact should be “left as is”.

Essex County library workers with CUPE Local 2974 is on strike. Mississauga Library workers may also be on strike July 4.
Essex County library workers with CUPE Local 2974 is on strike. Mississauga Library workers may also be on strike July 4.

Asbestos-related cancer costs Canada billions
Tavia Grant, Globe and Mail
June 26 2016

A first-ever estimate of the toll of asbestos-related cancers on society pegs the cost of new cases at $1.7-billion per year in Canada, and notes that is likely an under-estimate. The economic burden of lung cancer and mesothelioma from work-related asbestos exposure in Canada amounts to an average of $818,000 per case.

Behind-the-scenes US Steel sale has workers worried
Kelly Bennett, CBC News
June 28 2016

Unionized steelworkers are nervously eyeing the bidders that remain in a months-long process to buy U.S. Steel Canada and take over its Hamilton and Nanticoke operations. One bidder has reportedly been knocked out of the running to buy U.S. Steel Canada, which has been operating under bankruptcy protection through the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act since 2014.

Fight for $15

Quebec nursing home workers strike for $15
Sonia Singh,
June 28 2016

Minimum wage as economic stimulus?
Angella MacEwen, Progressive Economics Forum
June 30 2016

15 plus: Quebec’s fight for $15 an hour
Chantal Sundaram,
June 30 2016

BC Parks down to 7 full-time rangers
Stefan Labbé, CBC News
July 1 2016

Seven full-time park rangers are now responsible for patrolling 14 million hectares of protected areas in the province — an area larger than the size of Greece. That’s according to data given to the B.C. Government and Services Employee Union (BCGEU) who says that number is down from 27 full-time rangers in 2001, even though parks and protected areas have grown since then.

13445771_1221873487857227_2140095386997964894_nFewer workers getting help for serious injuries
Sara Mojtehedzadeh, Toronto Star
July 3 2016

The number of workers accepted into a serious injury program that dramatically improves their access to medical care has been cut by more than half over the past five years, according to statistics requested by the Star — part of what critics call a systematic reduction in fair compensation for vulnerable Ontario workers.

Union drives

Inside OPSEU’s historic college worker organizing drive
David Bush,
June 29 2016

Toyota maintenance workers vote narrowly against joining Unifor
Joe Pavia, CBC News
June 29 2016

Not so Goodlife for gym employees fighting to unionize
Michelle Da Silva, Now Magazine
June 30 2016

CN train with dangerous materials rolls 5km from Vaughan yard
Dave Seglins, CBC News
June 28 2016

The Transportation Safety Board has announced it is opening an investigation into a runaway train incident earlier this month at CN Rail’s MacMillan Yard in Vaughan, in which 74 rail cars — one of them carrying dangerous goods — rolled away uncontrolled for five kilometres.

The Jailing of Han Sang-gyun
Yi San, Jacobin Magazine
July 3 2016

Last month, South Korean prosecutors called for an eight-year jail term for Han Sang-gyun, leader of the country’s eight-hundred-thousand-strong independent union federation. The request is outlandish even in a country that was once moving toward democracy but is now rapidly retreating back into authoritarianism.

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