Victory at OMERS

On November 15, representatives from employers and unions with members in the OMERS pension plan came together to vote on changes proposed in June. The result was 50% plus one in favour of the changes, a thin majority that fell short of the two-third majority required to make changes to the OMERS pension plan.

Read the full story at Rank and File.

CUPE fighting scare tactics at OMERS

In June, the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System (OMERS) announced it would be voting on a number of changes that would hugely impact the 500,000 workers that contribute to it across Ontario in November.

According to Fred Hahn, President of the Canadian Union of Public Employees Ontario, at the latest OMERS sponsors meeting the plan presented skewed numbers to convince union representatives that changes to the pension plan are necessary to protect workers.

“It’s all about the math!” he explains. “The math is like an equation and if you plug various pieces into an equation the output will be whatever you plug in. If you plug in a bunch of terrible looking variables, then the outcome could make it look like the plan’s in trouble. That’s not true.”

Read the full story at Rank and File.

Striking back: Gender and unpaid internships

As Canadians wait for Trudeau to finally fulfill his campaign promise to crack down on unpaid internships with regulations to go with 2017 legislation, student activists in Quebec are addressing a gender disparity in paid student placements and internships. According to student activists Jeanne Bilodeau and Annabel Berthiaume, fields that traditionally have more women like social work, education or nursing, tend not to have paid internships or placements compared to traditionally male-dominated jobs like those in the STEM fields.

Read the full story at Rank and File.



Liberals moving slowly on dealing with unpaid internships

Federal restrictions on unpaid internships are being pushed further and further back on the federal agenda. It was announced last month that the Trudeau government is pushing back plans to regulate unpaid internships to 2019. This would put this issue very close to the next federal election, and bring it up to four years after Trudeau initially addressed it in his campaign leading up to the 2015 election.

Recent news reports note the fact that following the campaign promise to crackdown on unpaid internships, consultations with the Canadian Intern Association fell through at the end of 2015. spoke to Will Webb, the Canadian Intern Association’s Director of Law Reform to ask if Trudeau’s Liberals truly are balking at campaign promises and find out why consultations ended in 2015.

Read the full story at Rank and File.

Hotel workers from around the world challenge sexual harassment

Hotel workers facing sexual harassment from guests hand list of demands to Marriott bosses at UN Labour Council meeting in Geneva.

During the United Nations International Labour Organization Conference in Geneva last month, hotel workers from across the globe met to discuss the issue of sexual harassment in the workplace and hand an accord addressing the issue to Marriott bosses

Read the full story at Rank and File.

Strikes aren’t dangerous, but Tory and Liberal union-busting rhetoric is

In a tweet published last week, Ontario’s Liberal Party called strikes “disruptive” and said that they “can become downright dangerous,” using this anti-union rhetoric as a shot against the province’s New Democratic Party. Text in a video included in the tweet read: “The NDP puts unions first. And the public second.”

These anti-worker comments and plug for back-to-work legislation are extremely troubling, even without the backdrop of the upcoming election. Though, coming from the party that violated the federal constitution in order to force Ontario teachers back to work in 2012, it’s no surprise.

Read the full story at Rank and File.

Migrant workers score victory against racial profiling and coercion of DNA by police

The Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario has ruled that the applications made by two of 54 current and former participants of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program regarding racial profiling in Elgin County were in ‘good faith’. The legal representatives for the respondent in the case, the Ontario Provincial Police, called for the case to be dismissed as it was passed the 1-year limitation period.

Read the full story at Rank and File.