Nil Sendil

  • Rank and File: A year of Ontario’s Bill 148: Not what the big business lobby predicted

    By David Bush

    A full year of big changes to labour law in Ontario has just passed. Newly released jobs numbers let us measure the impact of these changes, and gauge whether the nightmarish predictions of job losses and economic upheaval have come true.

    Bill 148’s changes

    Last January, Bill 148 ushered in a sweeping set of labour law reforms in the province. The legislation increased the minimum wage from $11.60 to $14 an hour, a 21% jump. This was the first phase of a two-phase increase to $15 an hour, which would have come into effect on January 1, 2019.

    The legislation also gave every worker in the province access to ten job-protected Personal Emergency Leave (PEL) days, allowing an additional 1.6 million workers to use these days for emergencies such as sickness, family illness or bereavement. It mandated that the first two PEL days be paid while also barring employers from requiring a doctor’s’ note.

    Ontario became the first Canadian province where all workers had access to paid sick days.

    In April, Bill 148 implemented an equal-pay-for-equal-work provision, mandating that part-time, contract, casual, seasonal and temporary workers who do substantially the same work as their full-time coworkers be paid the same.

    The legislation also brought in a number of rule changes that improved workers’ holiday pay and vacations, and made it easier to join and keep a union.

    Big business predictions 

    In the lead up to Bill 148 being passed, many in the big business community were warning that the changes it contained would lead to economic disaster and major job losses.

    A study done in 2017 by the Canadian Centre for Economic Analysis (commissioned by the Ontario Chamber of Commerce) claimed that 185,000 jobs would be lost over two years. A 2017 TD Bank study predicted that Bill 148 would result in 80,000 to 90,000 jobs lost. Even Ontario’s Financial Accountability Office predicted 50,000 jobs would be lost due to Bill 148.

    In January 2018, Ontario lost 54,000 jobs and it seemed that the critics of Bill 148 were right. The media quickly picked up on this narrative in January and again in August, when Statistics Canada’s monthly labour force survey showed that Ontario lost 80,000 jobs. But StatsCan’s monthly survey is merely a snapshot of the economy, which is apt to fluctuate dramatically from month to month. Looking at the change in jobs numbers from year to year is a much clearer way to measure the impacts of labour law reforms.

    Bill 148’s impact

    So after 12 months of Bill 148, what happened to Ontario’s job market?

    The province added roughly 78,000 jobs in the last year, a 1.1% increase. This exceeded the national average of employment growth, which increased by only 0.9%. Overall, Ontario’s unemployment rate finished the year at 5.4%, below last year’s unemployment rate of 5.5% and also below the national unemployment rate of 5.6%. Ontario now has the second lowest unemployment rate in the country.

    While it’s true that Ontario’s job growth in 2018 slowed when compared to 2017 (1.1% compared to 2.5%) this slowdown was a trend across the country. Job growth across Canada decelerated from a 2.3% increase in 2017 to a 0.9% increase in 2018. Job growth in 2018 looked more like job growth trends in 2015 and 2016, rather than the outlier year of 2017, meaning that there is no merit to the argument that reforms in Bill 148 caused job loss or even less job creation.

    All of the jobs added in Ontario were due to an increase in full-time work, meaning the total amount of wages going to Ontario’s workers increased this year.

    And what kind of jobs are they? The service sector saw an increase in employment by 1.4%, led by increases in transportation and warehousing, business, building and other services and educational services. This means that the jobs that are being created are not simply in the public sector or in sectors unaffected by labour law changes, as some may assume. Instead, job growth has occurred in many of the very sectors that were directly impacted by Bill 148.

    It is noteworthy that employment in the food service and accommodation sector rose by 0.8%, while total hours worked in that sector rose by 1.7% over the last year. This means that wages and conditions for workers in fast food restaurants, hotels and retail – which are often among the lowest – improved in 2018. The big business lobby argued vociferously that this sector in particular would be hard hit by the new labour law changes and see big job losses.

    The real story 

    The Ontario Chamber of Commerce stated this fall that “Bill 148 was too much, too fast. The compounding labour reforms and unintended consequences came at too high a cost to Ontario’s economy.”

    But the reality is over the last 12 months in Ontario, employment, wages, and the total hours of work increased, while unemployment decreased. The big business predictions about Bill 148 turned out to be nothing more than baseless scaremongering.

    Sadly, the reforms in Bill 148 were largely rolled back by the new government’s Bill 47, which came into effect on January 1, 2019. The province gutted the much needed reforms in Bill 148, despite the evidence that increasing the minimum wage and introducing paid sick days, equal-pay-for-equal work and rules that made it easier to join and keep and union actually led to increased employment.

    We can take heart that making these reforms not only improved the lives of workers, but they did not have the disastrous consequences for Ontario’s economy that some predicted. Now we have to continue fighting to improve working conditions for all Ontario workers.

    Read the full Rank and File story.




  • published Premier Ford: Still not for the people in Media 2019-06-28 12:53:21 -0400

    Premier Ford: Still not for the people

    The Conservative government under Doug Ford is in a deep crisis. Poll after poll has shown their plummeting popularity. Just last week, Premier Ford was booed by nearly 2 million Raptors fans at their recent celebration in Toronto. Such widespread animosity shows the extent to which ordinary Ontarians oppose his austerity agenda. And it means the work we are all doing is even more important.

    Join an event near you to keep the pressure up: Click here

    When he shuffled his cabinet last week, Premier Doug Ford hoped to hit the reset button on his government. He removed Laurie Scott, the Minister of Labour who took away our $15 minimum wage, paid sick days, the right to equal pay for equal work and so many other protections on the job. But, he then replaced her with Monte McNaughton, who is well-known for his anti-worker views. While Premier Ford may want to change the face of his Cabinet, he is clearly not interested in changing course. This is why it’s crucial we use the summer months to redouble our organizing effort and grow our numbers -- so that we can be bigger and stronger to defend our communities against the cuts and rollbacks we know are coming.

    Every action matters. Find an event in your community, click here.

    Can’t find an event near you?New campaign flyer artwork design with the title \ 
    Take the first step to get $15 & Fairness activities going in your neighbourhood.
    Download our new posters and distribute them (click here), and reply to this email to connect with a $15 & Fairness organizer who can brainstorm with you about ways of getting started! 


    Wednesday, June 26th
    TORONTO, Worker Rights in the Gig Economy
    6:30 PM - 8:30 PM | New Horizons Tower
    Click here to RSVP on Facebook

    MISSISSAUGA, $15 and Fairness Meet and Greet
    7:00 PM - 9:00 PM | Mississauga Valley Community Centre
    Click here to RSVP 

    Thursday, June 27th
    KINGSTON, On Strike for Sick Days! Support Action
    8:00 AM - 9:30 AM | Fort Henry Drive and Highway #2
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook

    Tuesday, July 2nd
    TORONTO, City-wide Organizing Meeting
    5:30 PM - 8:30 PM | 720 Spadina Ave Unit 223
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook

    Wednesday, July 3rd
    TORONTO, NO to OSAP changes, YES to fairer wages!
    12:00 PM - 2:00 PM | St George and Bloor St W
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook

    Thursday, July 4th
    TORONTO, George Brown $15 & Fairness Outreach
    11:30 AM - 12:30 PM | Kings Lounge, George Brown College - St James Campus
    Click here to RSVP 

    TORONTO, Climate Work is Decent Work Outreach at Dufferin Station
    4:30 PM - 6:00 PM | Dufferin TTC Station
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook

    BRACEBRIDGE, Know Your Rights at Work (Free workshop)
    6:00 PM - 8:00 PM | 46 Dominion St
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook

    Saturday, July 6th
    TORONTO, Climate Work is Decent Work Outreach at Evergreen Brickworks

    9:00 AM - 11:00 AM | Evergreen Brickworks Farmers Market
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook

    ETOBICOKE-LAKESHORE, $15 and Fairness Outreach
    12:00 PM - 2:00 PM | The Sydney Grind
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook


    OTTAWA, Beach Party at Britannia Beach
    12:00 PM - 3:00 PM | Brittania Beach 
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook

    Sunday, July 7th
    TORONTO, Parkdale wants $15 and Fairness
    12:00 PM - 2:00 PM | Queen St W and Jameson Ave
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook

    BRAMPTON, Organizing Meeting
    2:00 PM - 4:00 PM | Knightsbridge Senior Centre
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook

    Tuesday, July 9th
    TORONTO, Workshop: Unite Against Racism: Busting myths, building power
    6:00 PM - 8:00 PM | 720 Spadina Ave Unit 202
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook


  • published We ALL deserve decent work! in Media 2019-06-12 12:56:22 -0400

    We ALL deserve decent work!

    We are done with their lies. The Ford government boasts about finding $3.8 billion in savings for corporations, while blaming migrants and refugees for cuts to public services. They are throwing away millions to get out of the Beer Store contract, but claim we don’t have enough money for our schools and hospitals.

    The truth is, there is more than enough for everyone. Will you join us on Sunday, June 16 to denounce the fear-mongering and deception that makes the politics of austerity possible?

    Click here to join us in Guelph
    Click here to join us in London
    Click here to join us in Ottawa
    Click here to join us in Peterborough
    Click here to join us in Toronto

    Here in Ontario and across the country, politicians are fueling racist and anti-immigrant sentiments to divide us, gain power, then implement a pro-corporate agenda that hurts everyone. The damage is real: acts of white-supremacy are on the rise. And while we fight one another for scraps, the super rich simply get richer.

    This is why the Fight for $15 & Fairness has pledged to join the #UniteAgainstRacism mobilizations led by the Migrant Rights Network. On June 16, join the cross-country day of action! Let’s reclaim the collective power we hold when we act together to demand fairness for all.
    We ALL deserve:
    - Decent work.
    - Quality, universal, public services.
    - The right to live where we want, with our families, without fear of deportation.
    - A world free of discrimination and unfairness.
    - A world free of war, corporate impunity, and climate change.

    Say it with us loud and clear: greedy corporations and unaccountable politicians are the problem, not migrants, not refugees, not the people of color. It is time to stop the cuts that push our communities into deeper poverty and the politics of division that undermine our power. Actions are being updated regularly, find the most current info at: www.migrantrights.ca/June16

    image with a list of June 16 events
    Share on
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    Not able to join us on Sunday, June 16? $15 & Fairness events are happening regularly, visit our website to see upcoming actions you can join.


  • published Leaflet: Climate Justice for $15 & Fairness in Resources 2019-06-10 12:28:23 -0400

  • published Leaflet: Bring back $15! in Resources 2019-06-06 12:12:42 -0400

  • published Leaflet: Bring back paid sick days in Resources 2019-06-06 12:10:59 -0400

  • published Leaflet: Bring back equal pay in Resources 2019-06-06 12:10:13 -0400

  • published Customizable leaflets in Resources 2019-06-06 12:08:46 -0400

    Customizable leaflets

    https://drive.google.com/open?id=1yq8W3zKUSZlM4N8zO0rjdYwyRzEoAhIe


  • published Poster: Defend decent work (11x17) in Resources 2019-06-06 11:57:38 -0400

  • The resistance is growing, join us in your community:

    A new poll released yesterday shows 75% of Ontarians think Premier Ford is taking us in the wrong direction. The public outrage against Ford’s cut to public services and the rollbacks of our rights is so high that 4 in 10 Conservative voters say they wouldn’t vote for the party again.[1]

    There is no doubt that the People of Ontario are angry at the Ford government for repeatedly choosing corporate profits over workers, our health and the environment. It’s crucial that we organize this sentiment to create sustained pressure to not only shame the Conservative government, but also to stop the attacks on our communities.

    groups of $15 & fairness supporters photographed in niagara falls, malton, muskoka and ottawa

    This is why from Muskoka to Malton, and from Niagara Falls  to Ottawa, $15 & Fairness supporters have been organizing local events to hold the Ford government to account and defend our rights against bad bosses. In the coming days please make every effort to join us at a local action near you:

    • June 7 & 8 - Power of Many Provincial Days of Action
      June 7 marks one year of resisting government cuts to public services, education, health care and decent work. Labour and community will be hitting the streets throughout Ontario to show that we didn't vote for cuts to public services or attacks on decent work. Join an action in a community near you, click here

    • Climate justice means decent work and migrant rights! Sign the pact for a Green New Deal!
      People across the country are coming together to create a shared vision for an economy that protects the planet -- and its inhabitants. Sign the pact here, to get on board. Round-table discussions are taking place everywhere! Click here to find one near you.

      We know that any bold vision to protect the environment must include: decent work; universal, high quality public services; permanent resident status for all migrants and refugees; indigenous self-determination, gender justice, and an end to racism; and an end to practices and persecution that displace people and force them to migrate.

      Please help us bring this decent work perspective to a Green New Deal town hall near you. We have a specific $15 and Fairness petition tailored to the environmental movement that helps make the link between workers’ & migrant rights and climate justice. You can download the petition here. A complementary leaflet has been produced by the Migrant Rights Network and is available for download here.

    • Support the Niagara workers on strike for $15 & Fairness
      Last year when the minimum wage increased, management started stealing workers’ tips at the Rainforest Cafe. Workers -- mostly women -- decided to form a union to protect themselves and now they’re on strike, and need our help. They are demanding a minimum wage of $15 an hour, respect at work, and an end to sexual violence in the workplace. Across Ontario let’s join forces to help these workers win $15 & Fairness -- please take a moment now to email the employer, click here.

    Scroll below to find an action near you!

    May 23
    SCARBOROUGH, Door knocking outreach in Scarborough
    Thursday, 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM - Morningside Ave & Lawrence Ave E
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    May 25
    MISSISSAUGA, Mississauga wants $15 and Fairness outreach
    Saturday, 11: 00 AM - 12:00 PM - 100 Dundas St East
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    May 27
    OTTAWA, Ottawa organizing meeting
    Monday, 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM - 25OneCommunity
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    May 28
    BRACEBRIDGE, Parry Sound-Muskoka decent work coffee meet up
    Tuesday, 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM - Oliver's Coffee Corporation
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    NIPISSING,  Nipissing Decent Work Panel
    Tuesday, 7:30 PM - 9:30 PM - White Water Gallery
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    May 29
    LONDON, Train the trainer workshop: Building capacity to fight racism & xenophobia
    Wednesday, 5:30 PM - 8:30 PM - Tolpuddle Cooperative, Common Room
    Click here to RSVP

    June 1
    TORONTO, Injured Workers' Rally
    Saturday, 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM - Queens Park
    Under Ford’s watch, the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board gave a multi-billion dollar gift to employers by cutting their premiums by 30%, while injured workers are denied access to the services they need. On June 1st, join the rally at Queens Park to ensure every Ontario worker gets protected if they get injured on the job.
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    ETOBICOKE, Fighting for $15 and Fairness in Mimico
    Saturday, 12:00 PM - 2:00 PM - Birds and Bee's Cafe
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    June 2
    BRAMPTON, Brampton organizing meeting
    Sunday, 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM - Knightsbridge Senior Citizens Centre
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    June 4
    TORONTO, Toronto organizing meeting
    Tuesday, 5:30 PM - 8:30 PM - 720 Spadina Ave Unit 223
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    June 8
    TORONTO, West Toronto canvass at Dufferin Station
    Saturday, 12:00 NOON - 1:30 PM - Northwest corner of Dufferin and Bloor
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    June 11
    SCARBOROUGH, Centennial College -- Fairness for contract faculty info session
    Tuesday, 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM - School of Business Boardroom, Progress Campus
    Click here to RSVP

    June 16
    TORONTO, Migrant Rights Network Day of Action to #UniteAgainstRacism
    Sunday, 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM - Grange Park
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    [1] Read the Toronto Star story here.



  • published Speak out for access to justice in Media 2019-05-07 18:57:31 -0400

    Speak out for access to justice

    When employers face no consequences for breaking the law, they simply keep violating workers’ rights. This is why the enforcement of our rights is so critical, and we need YOU to take urgent action to ensure access to justice for all: click here to email Premier Ford to call for legal aid cuts to be reversed.

    After taking away our rights at work, Premier Ford is now trying to limit our ability to take legal action against bad bosses. His government’s recently announced 30% cut to legal aid and cancellation of funding for immigration and refugee law services is an assault on the poorest members of our communities. Here’s what these cuts could mean for workers in Ontario:

    • Low-wage workers who experience thousands of dollars in wage theft won’t be able to get support from local community legal clinics to file claims with the Ministry of Labour;
    • A migrant care worker who bravely left her abusive employer won’t be able to access legal aid to secure her immigration status long enough to press charges against her employer;
    • A refugee who faces death or torture if deported would not be able to access legal aid to appeal their case, or get information in their first language about their legal rights.

    Decisions on how legal aid cuts are going to be implemented will be made this week. Help us send a strong message right now to defend the community legal clinics we rely on.

    Click here to send a letter to stop these cuts from coming into effect.

    The reality is workers, tenants, immigrants, refugees, and people with low-incomes turn to legal clinics when their rights are violated. But Ford’s cuts will put these very legal clinics at risk and the people who are already marginalized will be hit the hardest.

    Please send your message now to stop legal aid cuts and ensure no legal clinic in Ontario has to close its doors. With the click of a button, you can send our pre-drafted email to Premier Doug Ford, Attorney General Caroline Mulroney, and have all the Legal Aid Ontario Board of Directors copied.

    Friend, thank you for speaking out! After sending your email, please help us spread the word by sharing this email with your friends.


  • published Stop the cuts in Actions 2019-05-07 17:27:32 -0400

  • published Together, we resist. Together, we win. in Media 2019-05-01 11:59:00 -0400

    Together, we resist. Together, we win.

    Between the Ford government’s relentless attacks on public services, global rise in hate crimes and environmental catastrophes, it can become easy to forget the strength of our collective power. But, that would be a mistake.

    From the right to vote, to access to universal health care to a $14 minimum wage, the hard-fought gains we benefit from today are all thanks to people who organized against the odds. In fact, many exciting organizing initiatives are happening right now that we want you to know about:

    • Bike and food couriers organize for $15 & Fairness
      Learn more, visit: www.foodstersunited.ca -- This morning couriers working for Foodora, the international app-giant for food delivery, announced they will fight to unionize and win $15 & Fairness. Because Foodora misclassifies them as “independent contractors”, these workers currently don’t have access to even the most basic labour protections such as sick days or employment insurance. If these workers are successful, it will be a breakthrough in organizing for workers in the “gig economy” and a huge step forward in the fight for decent work. Let’s do everything we can to make sure they win. Email Foodora right now at support@foodora.ca to speak out for these workers (and don't forget to cc campaign organizers at info@foodstersunited.ca). 

    Shareable image with the text We support foodora couriers
     Spread the word on Facebook (click here) to show couriers some love!
    Follow the Justice for Couriers Campaign: on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter

    • #UniteAgainstRacism so no worker is left behind
      Learn more, visit: https://migrantrights.ca/may1 -- Governments are the ones who are responsible for cutting public services and legislating poverty-level wages to please corporate lobbyists, NOT migrants or refugees. Join us in rejecting the divide between migrant, immigrant, undocumented people and citizens, and assert that we are all workers. Together, we must insist that no worker be left behind. Today, find a local event for International Workers Day, and show up with this placard. Then take a photo of yourself with it & share on social media with #UniteAgainstRacism.

    • Legal Aid Ontario lawyers organize to stop the cuts
      Visit
      www.stoplegalaidcuts.ca/ to email your MPP now -- The Ford government’s $30 million cut to legal aid is an assault on the poorest members of our communities. The hardest hit will be Ontario’s most vulnerable people, including women fleeing domestic violence, refugees fleeing life-threatening persecution, and innocent people facing prison because they can’t afford a lawyer. Access to justice should be a right for ALL!

    Today, on International Workers’ Day, we want you, to double-down on your commitment to help build workers’ collective power. Scroll below to find an action near you!

    May 1
    TORONTO, We Love Workers at UofT! #MayDay
    Wednesday, 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM - Sidney Smith Hall, University of Toronto
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    MISSISSAUGA, TAWC - 2019 YYZ May Day Street Festival
    Wednesday, 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM - Pearson Airport, Terminal 1 Departures 
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    HAMILTON, International Workers' Day March
    Wednesday, 3:30 PM - 9:00 PM - Gore Park
    Click here to share on Facebook

    BRACEBRIDGE, No Workers Left Behind Rally
    Wednesday, 4:30 PM - 5:30 PM - MPP Norm Millers Bracebridge Office (165 Manitoba St)
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    TORONTO, Toronto May 1 International Workers' Day Rally
    Wednesday, 5:00 PM - Nathan Philips Square
    Click here to share on Facebook

    NORTH BAY, $15 And Fairness Strategy Meeting
    Wednesday, 5:30 PM - 7:00 PM - UNIFOR 103 Office (107 Sherriff Ave, Suite 102B)
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    OTTAWA, Workers Cabaret: Resistance Is Beautiful
    Wednesday, 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM - Arts Court
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    May 2
    SCARBOROUGH, Scarborough Decent Work Outreach
    Thursday, 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM - McDonalds by Kingston Rd and Lawrence Ave
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    May 4
    ETOBICOKE, Etobicoke-Lakeshore $15 and Fairness Outreach
    Saturday, 12:00 PM - 2:00 PM - The Sydney Grind (2883 Lakeshore Blvd W)
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    May 5
    MISSISSAUGA, Malton Nagar Kirtan Parade Outreach
    Sunday, 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM - Sri Guru Singh Sabha (7280 Airport Rd)
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    May 7
    TORONTO, Toronto-Wide Organizing Meeting
    Tuesday, 5:30 PM - 8:30 PM - 720 Spadina Ave Unit223
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    May 8
    TORONTO, Tea and Data-Entry Party
    Wednesday, 4:30 PM - 6:00 PM - 720 Spadina Ave Unit 223
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    May 11
    TORONTO, West Toronto outreach at Spring Into Parkdale
    Saturday, 12:30 PM - 2:00 PM - Roncesvalles Ave and Queen St W
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    May 13
    KINGSTON, Kingston Organizing Meeting
    Monday, 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM - Coffee Way Donuts
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook


  • Cuts to services for us, billions in profits for corporations

    Premier Doug Ford made his priorities crystal clear last week by releasing his very first provincial budget. Suffice to say, working people or our families are NOT of concern to the Premier.

    SPEAK UP NOW!
    Click here to find an action near you.

    From education to environment, health care to social services, cuts to public services are coming. We know cuts will be devastating both for the quality of the services our communities rely on, and the working conditions of the people who deliver them. The budget hits people on social assistance, Indigenous peoples, migrants and refugees the hardest, with these specific cuts alone adding up to billions.

    Forcing our communities into deeper poverty to boost corporate profits is inexcusable. Ford's budget prioritizes $3.8 billion in savings for corporations. Meanwhile, $11 million in funding is cut from the Ministry of Labour further weakening the enforcement of our rights on the job. It was bad enough that the Ministry was ordered to stop using proactive inspections back in September, but now they will start relying on employer self-regulation. Bad bosses will no doubt see this as an open invitation to continue violating workers' rights. 

    Over and over again, Doug Ford is proving that he is for corporations, not the people. Earlier in April his government's own Financial Accountability Office confirmed what we had said all along. Had the $15 minimum wage kicked in on January 1st 2019 as scheduled, 1.3 million Ontarians each would have received a $810 boost (after-tax). But, under Ford’s so called low-income tax credit, 62% of minimum wage earners get nothing while those who are eligible get only about a $400 tax-credit

    With wages frozen, rights under attack and services being cut, people are outraged in all corners of the province. Now is the time to take action!

    • Ontario Federation of Labour is organizing a provincial Day of Action tomorrow (Wednesday, April 17) to protest Doug Ford's budget: click here to find events in Toronto, click here to find events across Ontario.
    • Interfaith Social Assistance Reform Coalition (ISARC) has committed to holding local town halls to amplify the voices of Ontarians who are living on the margins, the first is scheduled to take place in Kingston on April 23rd (see details below, or click here to learn more about this initiative).

    Please take a look at upcoming events and join one near you. We cannot ever forget that WE are the majority, and united we will win decent work for ALL.

    Wednesday, April 17th
    ONTARIO-WIDE: Power of Many Day of Action
    Wednesday, All day | Across Ontario
    Ford's 2019 budget means more cuts to programs and public services that working people depend on. Join the Ontario Federation of Labour to help spread the word about what is at stake in this budget and how we can all take action. Actions are happening in Toronto, Peel, Guelph, London, Waterloo, North Bay, Ottawa, Kingston, Durham, Chatham, Stratford, Sault Ste. Marie, Cornwall, and Thunder Bay. Click here to find events in Toronto, click here to find events across Ontario.

    BRAMPTON, Brampton Outreach
    Wednesday, 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM | Brampton Downtown Terminal
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook

    BRACEBRIDGE, Decent Work Coffee Meet up
    Wednesday, 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM | Oliver's Coffee Corporation
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook

    Monday, April 22nd
    KINGSTON, Decent Work Discussions: How Tenants Fight Back!
    Monday, 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM | The Grad Club
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook

    Tuesday, April 23rd
    KINGSTON, Voices from the Margins Town Hall
    Tuesday, 9:30 AM - 11:30 AM |St. Vincent de Paul, 85 Stephen St
    Many people in Ontario are hurt by the rollback of our scheduled $15 minimum wage, cuts to services, and inadequate social assistance programs. Interfaith Social Assistance Reform Coalition is organizing a series of town halls to collect and amplify these stories. If you are interested in sharing your experiences, please consider attending the event. Email coordinator@isarc.ca to RSVP.

    TORONTO, Toronto-wide Organizing Meeting
    Tuesday, 5:30 PM - 8:30 PM | 720 Spadina Ave Unit 223
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook

    Thursday, April 25th
    SCARBOROUGH, Know Your Rights: Employment Standards Workshop
    Thursday, 5:30 PM - 8:00 PM | ACCES Employment
    Click here to RSVP

    Saturday, April 27th
    TORONTO, West Toronto Canvass at Dufferin Station
    Saturday, 11:30 AM - 1:00 PM | Dufferin TTC Station
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook

    Sunday, April 28th
    BRAMPTON, Brampton Organizing Meeting
    Sunday, 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM | Knightsbridge Senior Citizens Centre
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook

    SAULT STE MARIE, Decent Work Coffee Meetup
    Sunday, 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM | Shabby Motley Handcraft
    To RSVP and share on Facebook

    Tuesday, April 30th
    TORONTO, Rally to Protect Public Healthcare
    Tuesday, 12:00 PM - 2:00 PM | Queens Park
    To RSVP and share on Facebook

    Wednesday, May 1st
    ONTARIO-WIDE, #UniteAgainsRacism - No Worker Left Behind!
    Politicians want us to blame migrants and refugees instead of realizing that it’s the super rich who are responsible for low wages and underfunded services. We will not be fooled! On May 1st, find a local event for International Workers Day, and show up with this placard. Then take a photo of yourself with it and share it on social media with #UniteAgainstRacism. Learn more, visit: https://migrantrights.ca/may1

    MISSISSAUGA, Toronto Airport May Day Street Festival

    Wednesday, 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM | Toronto Pearson International Airport
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook

    OTTAWA, Workers Cabaret: Resistance Is Beautiful
    Wednesday, 7:00 PM - 9:00 PM | Arts Court
    Click here to RSVP or to share on Facebook

    Sunday, May 5th
    MISSISSAUGA, Malton Nagar Kirtan Parade Outreach

    Sunday, 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM | Sri Guru Singh Sabha
    Click here to RSVP

    Saturday, May 11th
    TORONTO,  West Toronto Outreach at Spring into Parkdale
    Saturday, 12:30 PM - 2:00 PM | Roncesvalles and Queen Intersection
    Click here to RSVP or share on Facebook



  • Media Release: With Bill 66, Premier Ford chooses corporate profits over people - again, say leaders in the Fight for $15 & Fairness movement

    Toronto, April 2, 2019 -- “The passage of Bill 66 today means only one thing: Premier Ford has forgotten that he was elected to serve the people of Ontario, not CEOs,” says Pam Frache, Coordinator of the Ontario-wide Fight for $15 & Fairness Campaign.  “This legislation has clearly been designed to allow corporations to save money at the expense of workers, our health, and the environment. It should never have been introduced in the first place.”

     “In communities like mine, many people already struggle because of poverty wages, unstable hours, and contract jobs with no benefits. Yet the Ford government is giving employers unrestrained powers to force us work more hours while paying less in overtime,” says Navi Aujla, Organizer with the Brampton chapter of Fight for $15 & Fairness. “Without Ministry of Labour oversight, this just opens the door for more employer abuse.”

    Bill 66, which passed third reading today, will:
    - Cancel protections against excessive hours of work & unpaid overtime, 
    - Make it harder for workers to learn about their rights on the job, 
    - End collective bargaining agreements for many construction workers in the public sector, 
    - Put children's lives at risk and jeopardize early childhood educator jobs, 
    - Lead to more pollution in Ontario by cancelling protections against toxic chemicals in our workplaces, and much more.

    “Ontarians are outraged at Premier Ford, who once again chose corporations over people,” says Pam Frache. “In November 2019, the Ford government cancelled the $15 minimum wage, just 6 weeks before it was scheduled to come into effect, delaying it at least until 2025 despite massive public opposition. On top of this, Ford’s so-called tax break for low-income workers leaves them $400 worse off than if the minimum wage had increased to $15 this past January,” adds Frache, referencing the findings published today by the Financial Accountability Office.

    “First his government scrapped the much needed labour law reforms to satisfy demands coming from Big Business. Then they paused the Pay Transparency Act because corporations think paying women fairly costs too much, even if it means families have to make do with less income thanks to pay discrimination. Now, Ford has rammed through Bill 66,” says Frache.

    “If an employer can make a single worker put in a 70-hour week under Bill 66 and do the job of two people at no extra cost, why would any employer ever hire more staff?” asks Navi Aujla. “The answer is they wouldn’t. And that is on Premier Ford.”

    The Fight for $15 and Fairness is a growing movement of workers committed to fighting for decent work, and includes anti-poverty activists, health providers, labour groups, students, faculty, and faith leaders. 
    To learn more, visit: www.15andFairness.org.

    -30
    For more information and to arrange interviews: 
    Nil Sendil, Communications Coordinator, Fight for $15 and Fairness
    info@15andfairness.org l 647-710-5795


  • published Ford chooses corporations over people, AGAIN! in Media 2019-03-29 11:56:03 -0400

    Ford chooses corporations over people, AGAIN!

    Premier Doug Ford has zero mandate to make the people of Ontario work more while getting paid less. But that is exactly what his government will do to save costs for corporate executives at the expense of workers, our health and the environment.

    All signs indicate that the Ford government will use its majority inside Queen's Park to pass the dangerous Bill 66 next week. This legislation will:

       - Remove protections against excessive hours of work & unpaid overtime [1]
       - Make it harder for workers to learn about their rights on the job [2]
       - End collective bargaining agreements for many construction workers in the public sector [3]
       - Put children's lives at risk and jeopardize early childhood educator jobs [4]
       - Lead to more pollution in Ontario by cancelling protections against toxic chemicals in our workplaces [5] and much more.

    The reality is NO ONE signed up for such drastic changes that put communities at risk. This is why the only place Ford government enjoys a majority is inside the legislature. On the streets, in our workplaces and campuses, we have the power of many.

    New community organizing tool: Download the petition

    Over two-thirds of Ontarians support a $15 minimum wage now. Nearly 80% support paid sick days, including 64% of Conservative voters. Clearly, the vast majority of people in Ontario support our agenda for decent work and wages. We need your help to organize this sentiment!

    click to download the petition
    Click here to download our new petition.

    You can use the new $15 & Fairness petition to invite friends, neighbours and co-workers to join this growing decent work movement. Once completed with signatures and contact info, take a photo of the petition and send it to us at info@15andFairness.org. Alternatively, you can also ask your friends to sign the online petition (click hereby forwarding this email to them.

    Join an event, get involved in your community:

    From Ottawa to Brampton, Hamilton to Sault Ste Marie, local events are bringing $15 & Fairness supporters together to defend our rights against bad bosses, and hold this government to account. Check out the event listing below, and join us to learn more about how you can get involved. For the latest listing of events, visit: www.15andfairness.org/events

    March 30
    GUELPH, Activists' Workshop to learn skills for community organizing

    Saturday, 10:00 AM to 2:45 PM - St. Andrews Church, 161 Norfolk St
    Click here to sign up & share on Facebook

    April 1
    OTTAWA, Ottawa Organizing Meeting
    Monday, 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM - 251 Bank St, 2nd Floor
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    HAMILTON, Door Knocking in Hamilton
    Monday, 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM - 60 Ventura Drive
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    April 2
    KINGSTON, Kingston Power of Many: Regional Activation Meeting
    Tuesday, 5:30 PM - 8:30 PM - OPSEU Hall, 824 John Counter Blvd
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    OTTAWA, Ottawa Power of Many: Regional Activation Meeting
    Tuesday, 6:00PM - 8:30 PM - Ottawa City Hall, 110 Laurier Ave W
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    April 3
    SAULT STE. MARIE, Sault Ste. Marie Power of Many: Regional Activation Meeting
    Wednesday, 5:30 PM - 8:30 PM - OPSEU Regional Office, 154 Great Northern Rd
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    April 6
    TORONTO, $15 and Fairness joins the Rally for Education
    Saturday, 11:30 AM - 2:0 PM - Northwest corner of University and College
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    April 9
    TORONTO, Toronto Wide Organizing Meeting
    Tuesday, 5:30 PM - 8:30 PM - 720 Spadina Ave Unit 223
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    April 13
    ETOBICOKE, Etobicoke-Lakeshore $15 and Fairness Outreach
    Saturday, 11:30 AM - 2:00 PM - The Sydney Grind, 2883 Lakeshore Blvd W
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    TORONTO, A Green New Deal for All
    Saturday, 9:30 AM - 6:00 PM - Steelworkers Toronto Area Council, 25 Cecil St
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    April 17
    BRAMPTON, Brampton Outreach
    Wednesday, 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM - Brampton Downtown Terminal, 8 Nelson St W
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    April 23
    TORONTO, Toronto Wide Organizing Meeting
    Tuesday, 5:30 PM - 8:30 PM - 720 Spadina Ave Unit 223
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook


    April 28
    BRAMPTON, Brampton Organizing Meeting

    Sunday, 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM - Knightsbridge Senior Citizens Centre, 1A Knightsbridge Rd
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook

    May 1
    TORONTO, Toronto Airport May Day Street Festival
    Wednesday, 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM - Terminal 1, Pearson Airport
    Click here to RSVP and to share on Facebook


    Sources on Bill 66:

    [1] Toronto Star op-ed by labour lawyer Josh Mandryk
    [2] CityNews clip 
    [3] Carpenters' District Council of Ontario statement on Bill 66
    [4] Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care deputation on Bill 66
    [5] Huffington Post article