October 07, 2017

Time is running out: Fix equal pay & scheduling

Today is International Day for Decent Work. Thanks to you and the efforts of thousands of others across Ontario, we have much to celebrate for! Over the past year, our growing $15 & Fairness movement successfully pressured the government to introduce legislation to raise the minimum wage to $15 by January 1, 2019, which will boost the incomes of 1.7 million people (quarter of the workforce) as well as their families. Bill 148: Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act, also includes 2 paid personal emergency days for all, as well as measures to make it easier for workers to join unions. Courageous workers, students, teachers, faith leaders, union activists, health providers & many others led actions across the province to make Bill 148 possible, but our job is not done.

On this International Decent Work Day, we are calling on you to help us re-double our efforts to win the strongest possible Bill 148. Are you with us?

Push for stronger equal pay language & fair scheduling

As Bill 148 got debated and reviewed by the provincial
parliament over the summer, corporate lobbyists, spearheaded by the Ontario Chamber of Commerce, forced changes to the legislation, introducing loopholes to the equal pay for equal work and fair scheduling measures, which our $15 & Fairness movement had worked so hard to get on the agenda.

Bill 148 cannot just be words on paper. We need to make sure that the language for equal pay for equal work and fair scheduling is the strongest that it can be. This will support workers who are in precarious jobs — most of whom are female, immigrants, and racialized — by not allowing them to get paid at lower rates for doing work similar to their full-time, permanently hired co-workers. Fair schedules are urgently needed to help workers plan their lives, hours of work, and manage family responsibilities.

Constituency week (October 10-13): Visit your representative!

This week is the perfect time to bring our message directly to members of provincial parliament (MPPs), who’ll be at their riding offices as part of the constituency week. We expect Bill 148 to soon go through a second-round of clause-by-clause review, which will be our opportunity to win stronger language to ensure equal pay and fair schedules for all. We need your help to make sure all MPPs hear our message clearly.

Print the material –> Grab a Friend –> Visit your MPP

  • There is a poster you can download (11×17, tabloid paper), which we encourage you to hang outside the constituency office and take photos with.
  • There is strength in numbers! If you can, take a friend (or 2) with you to drop by the office of your Member of Provincial Parliament to deliver an even louder message. The most important thing is that our elected officials hear from their constituents, whether in a group or solo, please stop by your MPP’s office.
  • Every member of the provincial parliament should receive a visit from the $15 & Fairness campaign this week. No matter which political party your MPP is with, they should know that you expect them to fix the equal pay & scheduling language in Bill 148. Click here to confirm who your MPP is or where their office is located.

We will help amplify these MPP visits across social media, if you use Facebook, Twitter or Instagram, don’t forget to share a photo of you outside the MPP’s office and include the hashtag #15andFairness. You can also send us your photo by replying to this email, and we can post them for you. Happy International Decent Work Day to us all!

UPCOMING EVENTS: Join one near you!

There are numerous actions and events being organized across Ontario! If you don’t see an action in your area, let us know how we can help you get one going!

Tuesday, October 10

MPP Visits – Constituency Week
Starting Tuesday, we’re taking our message straight to Members of Provincial Parliament in Ottawa. We’ll be delivering piles of signed petitions, letters, and postering around constituency offices so that MPPs know that we expect them to represent our interests.
–  Tuesday 10:00 AM – MPP Bob Chiarelli (Ottawa West)
–  Wednesday 2:00 PM – MPP Marie France Lalonde (Orleans)
–  Wednesday 7:00 PM – MPP Yasir Naqvi (Ottawa Centre)
–  Thursday 1:00 PM – MPP Natalie Desrosiers (Vanier)
To find out more about each action, email: [email protected]

Organizing Meeting for $15 & Fairness
6:00 PM – 7:30 PM  | Four Corners Library, 65 Queen St East
 | Click here for a map
Following an incredibly successful community picnic that we organized in September, bringing together close to 300 local supporters, we are continuing to mobilize! Come out, hear updates on the campaign, and help us plan future actions. There will be snacks!
To RSVP and share on Facebook, click here.

Good Enough to Work, Good Enough to Stay: Panel Discussion
7:00 PM – 10:00 PM  | Steelworkers Hall (25 Cecil St.) | Click here for a map
While characterized as “temporary” foreign workers, migrant workers have been a permanent part of Canadian workforces and communities for decades. Come learn more about the struggles and barriers faced by migrant workers, and how we can fight for the kind of labour laws that allow them to raise their voices and win the rights they deserve.
To RSVP and share on Facebook, click here.

Wednesday, October 11

Accessibility Now: Rally for Accessible Transit
4:00 PM – 7:00 PM  | Bloor & Yonge (Northeast corner) | Click here for a map
Accessibility is a right, not an option! Transit in Toronto continues to fail our communities, due to being insufficient, unaffordable and inaccessible. The barriers in the transportation system, and the negligence, make it at times impossible for people with disabilities to move around in the city. This is unacceptable, come out and demand #accessibilityNOW
To RSVP and share on Facebook, click here.

Door-knocking for $15 & Fairness
5:00 PM – 7:00 PM  | Castlemore and Highway 50 area
We will be going door to door in the Castlemore and Highway 50 area to speak to people about Bill 148 and ask if they would like to put up lawn signs! During the past two weeks, we had very positive responses at the doorsteps, with many community members taking up lawn signs. Let’s build on this! (Stay tuned on Facebook for exact meeting location)
To RSVP and share on Facebook, click here.

Fight for $15 & Fairness Postering Blitz!
5:30 PM – 7:30 PM  | Ottawa City Hall, 110 Ave Laurier O | Click here for a map
We know Bill 148 needs stronger language on equal pay for equal work and fair scheduling, for workers to be truly protected. But time is running out, so we’re bringing our message to the streets! Join us as we poster our way to MPPs Yasir Naqvi’s office for constituency week! We’ll have tape and posters, just bring yourself!
To RSVP and share on Facebook, click here.

Thursday, October 12

Decent Work & Health Network Meeting & Letter Writing Party
6:00 PM – 8:00 PM | Michael DeGroote Centre for Learning & Discovery, MDCL 2230
Hamilton residents, students and health providers are getting organized. Will you join? Following a packed event in September, we are meeting at McMaster University. Come and join the Hamilton Decent Work and Health Network (DWHN) for a meeting (6-7 PM) and letter-writing party (7-8 PM). Plug into DWHN planning at the meeting, then voice your support for a stronger Bill 148 by drafting a letter-to-the-editor for local newspapers.
To RSVP and share on Facebook, click here.

Parkdale Wants $15 & Fairness: Phone-bank & Letter Writing!
6:30 PM – 7:30 PM  | Parkdale Community Legal Services, 1266 Queen St West |
 Click here for a map
There is an incredible appetite in our communities for $15 & Fairness. Help us call supporters who have signed the $15 & Fairness petition, and let them know about the many ways to get involved. We will also write some letters to the editor for local papers to help get our message out there! Come out!
To RSVP and share on Facebook, click here.

Friday, October 13

12:00 PM – 1:00 PM  | Corner of Bagot & Princess St |
 Click here for a map
Join us for a downtown canvass –the fight is not over! The minimum wage increase to $15 is not a done deal and the improvements to employment standards in Bill 148 have yet to be adopted and can still be greatly improved. Meanwhile, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce and the big business lobby are busy campaigning against these promised gains. Let’s hit the pavement and spread the word! Everyone is welcome!
To RSVP and share on Facebook, click here.

Sunday, October 15

$15 & Fairness Solidarity Contingent at the Unity Rally to End White Supremacy
11:30 AM – 3:00 PM  | Northwest corner of College & University | Click here for a map
From borders to the workplace, we must all stand up against white supremacy. We call on all supporters of the $15 and Fairness movement to join the Unity Rally to End White Supremacy in Toronto. We oppose every form of hate. Far too often workers — especially those in precarious employment — are singled out for racist and Islamophobic harassment, with little recourse. We are organizing to demand dignity and respect for all.
To RSVP and share on Facebook, click here.

Monday, October 16

Regent Park Organizing Meeting
1:00 PM – 3:00 PM  | Regent Park Community Health, 40 Oak St | Click here for a map
Are you interested in being more involved with the $15 & Fairness campaign? Join the monthly Regent Park organizing meeting to find out more. Big business groups are trying to stop the government from raising the minimum wage to $15 by January 1, 2019. Help us stand up to them — our communities need decent work now!
To RSVP and share on Facebook, click here.

Tuesday, October 17

$15 & Fairness Solidarity Contingent for Raise Social Assistance Rates Rally
11:30 AM – 2:00 PM  | Toronto City Hall |
 Click here for a map
Government must act now to raise income for all of us! From social assistance to minimum wage — it’s time to raise the rates! On October 17, the International Day for the Elimination of Poverty, the Fight for $15 & Fairness Campaign will be joining the Time Is Now: Raise Social Assistance Rates Rally. Come out and march with us!
To RSVP and share on Facebook, click here.

Wednesday, October 18

Why the Fight for $15 & Fairness Isn’t Over: Panel Discussion
2:30 PM – 4:00
PM | Student Centre, Room 430 | Click here for map
The Ontario government has responded to our movement’s demands by proposing decent work legislation. However, the bill has not yet passed, and the Big Business Lobby is trying to stop it. Come learn about the campaign and how to get involved with a panel discussion featuring lead organizers from Unite Here Local 75, temp agency workplaces, student groups, and others! Coffee and light refreshments will be provided.
To RSVP and share on Facebook, click here.

Tuesday, October 24

Toronto-wide Organizing Meeting
5:30 PM – 8:00 PM  | 720 Spadina Avenue, Suite 223
 | Click here for a map
We must re-double our efforts to solidify our gains, spread the word and push to ensure $15 & Fairness for everyone. We also need to build support for all workers who fight and strike for $15 and Fairness in their workplaces, like airport workers at Pearson International, and faculty staff. Please RSVP so we know how many snacks to provide!
To RSVP and share on Facebook, click here.

Thursday, October 26

Regent Park Outreach
1:00 PM – 3:00 PM  | Corner of Dundas and Parliament
 | Click here for a map
Meet us in front of FreshCo and Tim Hortons (opposite of Regent Park Community Health Centre) to talk to our neighbours about what is at stake with Bill 148. We have not won the $15 minimum wage yet, we need to stay mobilized to make sure this important legislation is strengthened and passed. Come out, bring your friends and family!
To RSVP and share on Facebook, click here.

Saturday, October 28
Assembly: Stand Up for Decent Work and Oppose Hate!
9:30 AM – 4:00 PM  | Unifor Local 26 Hall, 606 First St
 | Click here for a map
Join the London Common Front, students and workers in a discussion on how to challenge racism on the streets and in our workplaces. Panelists will speak to the importance of the $15 minimum wage and decent work to tackle racism, and methods to build broad coalitions to push back the rise of hate in our communities.
To RSVP and share on Facebook, click here.

Parkdale wants $15 & Fairness: October Outreach Blitz!
12:30 PM – 2:00 PM  | Queen Street West and Jameson Avenue |
 Click here for a map
Are you ready for another fun outreach action to talk to Parkdale residents about the urgent need for $15 & Fairness in our community? Come out! We’ll have petitions, leaflets & posters ready to go, and together we’ll talk with passersby about the fight for decent work for all. Join us, and feel free to bring a friend!
To RSVP and share on Facebook, click here.