On Thursday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made a bold pronouncement:
"... if you are risking your health to keep this country moving and you're still making minimum wage, you deserve a raise."
We couldn't agree more.
But if the Prime Minister truly believes this, he should lead by example to permanently raise the federal minimum wage and implement an adequate number of paid sick days for all federally-regulated workers.
Unfortunately, none of the provinces have agreed to raise the minimum wage. Right now, hundreds of thousands of minimum wage workers are earning sub-poverty wages while risking their health and safety to provide the goods and services the rest of us depend on.
We welcome the long-overdue wage increases for Ontario's health, long-term care sectors, and social services, AND we believe everyone deserves decent wages - now and forever.
The COVID-19 crisis has exposed the intolerable wages and working conditions of the workers we need most: cleaners, educators, delivery workers, farm workers, child care workers, security guards, garbage collectors, drivers, health providers, grocery store workers, and more. We can't wait until after the crisis to demand better for the workers who need protection now.
Organize NOW for a decent work future
We are excited to announce a special organizing meeting co-sponsored by the Ontario Federation of Labour and the Fight for $15 and Fairness next Tuesday. Let's continue to bring union and non-union workers together!
Paid sick days for all!
If New York State can do it - so can we!
Last month, the state of New York adopted legislation providing up to 8 paid sick days annually - and permanently - for employees across the state. These days are ON TOP of the 14 days of paid sick days already implemented to address the COVID-19 crisis.
Studies in the United States shows paid sick/emergency leave policies dramatically reduce the spread of contagious illnesses and save millions in health care costs and productivity losses.
Every province and the federal government should make 7 or more paid sick days a matter of law. And in times of outbreaks, all workers - union and non-union alike - should get an additional 14 paid days. Refusing to act now puts every one of us at risk and increases health care costs.
May 21 - Day of Action for 21 Paid Emergency Leave Days!
We need at least 7 paid days permanently and an additional 14 during a pandemic. That means workers need 21 paid days right now!
Our April 21 Day of Action to demand paid emergency leave for all was a big success. (Click here to to see a great video put together by Chelsea, an Ottawa-based $15 and Fairness fighter.)
At our most recent $15 & Fairness online organizing meeting in April, we agreed to build on this momentum by taking action again on May 21 to demand an adequate number of paid sick leave days be enshrined in law. It should be a basic protection for all of us.
For even more inspiration, artist and $15 and Fairness activist Michael DeForge designed some beautiful posters - in colour and in black and white. Visit our resources page here to download them.
We can use these designs to promote our May 21 actions:
- Make your own poster promoting a group or neighbourhood action,
- Print them as is and post them in your neighbourhood or around your transit routes, or
- Use them for your profile pic, for selfies, and more.
Special Webinar: Workplace rights during COVID-19
We continue to work with the Workers' Action Centre to host free, online info sessions about workplace rights, access to income supports, and other workplace issues. But we are excited to announce Progress Toronto is co-sponsoring our next session!
Got an issue? Call the Workers' Action Centre
Remember, you can call the Workers' Action Centre any time for free, confidential advice on a workplace issue, or for questions navigating government programs.
Support is available regardless of immigration status and in any language. Please mention which language you need when you leave a message.
- Calls from within the Greater Toronto Area (GTA): 416-531-0778
- Calls from outside the GTA are Toll-free: 1-855-531-0778
-- the Fight for $15 & Fairness Team