Photo Review: Achievements of workers’ movement over the past year

TML Weekly is publishing on the occasion of May Day 2017 a photo review highlighting the struggles of the working people of Canada and Quebec since May Day 2016. May Day is a time to carry out summation of the achievements of the workers’ movement in the past year and set goals for what it seeks to achieve in the coming year.

The review highlights some of the many organized actions of the workers in Canada and Quebec over the past year to defend their rights and turn the situation around in their favour. The actions of the workers and people to affirm their rights and the rights and well-being of all are a vivid reminder of why the task of nation-building falls on the workers today.

So too, one of the achievements of the workers’ movement is the sustained publication of Workers’ Forum by the Workers’ Centre of CPC(M-L) to smash the silence on the workers’ living and working conditions and report on their struggles against the anti-social offensive and to open society’s path to progress. The non-Party workers’ press has also made headway, seen in the regular publication of Justice for Injured Workers produced by the workers themselves in defence of their rights, as well as many union and other publications.

TML Weekly salutes the working people on the occasion of May Day 2017 and sends its best wishes for militant and successful actions on May 1 and in the year to come.

Manufacturing


May Day rally in support of locked out MANA steelworkers in Hamilton, May 1, 2016.


Aerospace manufacturing workers participate in May Day 2016 in Montreal.


Autoworkers and allies rally in Windsor May 12, 2016, to oppose neo-liberal free trade outside Liberal government’s consultations on Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade agreement.


Hamilton Steelworkers’ press conference July 14, 2016, demands a public inquiry into U.S. Steel’s phony backruptcy protection scheme under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act.


Steelworkers from Local 1005 USW continue to picket the fraudulent CCAA bankruptcy court hearings, photo shows July 27, 2016, action.

On July 29, 2016, United Steelworkers Local 1005 celebrates 70 years of continuous resistance in defence of steelworkers’ rights.


Local 1005 Steelworkers distribute 70th anniversary issue of  Information Update in downtown Hamilton as part of regular work to inform the community about their fight for the workers, retirees and steel industry.


On September 30, 2016, workers from Grimsby, Welland and Brantford converge at gates of Max Aicher North American plant in Hamilton in response to USW Local 1005’s call for solidarity with locked-out workers.

Stelco steelworkers, retirees, salaried employees, and supporters hold “Hands Off Our Pensions Rally” at Ontario MPP Ted McMeekin’s office in Waterdown on November 25, 2016.


Hamilton steelworkers hold lively rally January 13, 2017, to defend pensions and express their determination to hold the Wynne/Trudeau Liberal governments to account.

Steelworkers at Samuel et Fils in Laval picket the plant February 12, 2017, after taking strike action to stop attacks on their pension plans.


Workers at CEZinc refinery in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield, striking to resist attacks on their pension plans, rally February 12, 2017.


Steelworkers’ locals from U.S. Steel and Essar Steel Algoma hold a joint press conference February 27, 2017, in Sault Ste Marie where they express their determination to resist the unjust and dictatorial “Wild West” of the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act.

Striking workers at CEZinc in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield participate in a special membership meeting March 8, 2017, as part of stepping up actions in defence of their rights in the face of the company’s demands for anti-worker concessions.

USW Local 1005 and allies picket outside of Hamilton East-Stoney Creek MP Bob Bratina’s office March 2, 2017, to raise public awareness of the role of the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act in robbing workers of what is theirs by right.


Four hundred striking CEZinc workers and their allies demonstrate in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield on March 29, 2017, joined by steelworkers from Samuel and Son — themselves on strike since February 4, others from Ciment Lafarge and a contingent of workers from Horne Copper Smelter in Rouyn-Noranda.


Striking workers from CEZinc refinery in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield, Quebec, are joined by steelworkers from Hamilton and Toronto and other allies in protest at the Noranda Income Fund’s (NIF) Annual General Meeting in Toronto April 28, 2017. NIF owns CEZinc.

Mining


Mobilization by Quebec workers leads to September 19, 2016, reinstatement of a mineworker suspended for defending the health and safety of miners at IAMGOLD mine in Pressiac, Quebec.


Workers’ Forum, November 17, 2016


Workers’ Forum, March 30, 2017

Construction


Construction workers participate in May Day 2016  in Montreal.

Forestry


Workers’ Forum, November 17, 2016


A successful tour across Central and Northern BC is organized by the Stand Up for the North Committee to discuss solutions for the problems facing the forestry industry and the communities that depend on it. Meetings take place in Prince George (photo above), Mackenzie, Williams Lake and Fort St. James from March 13-17, 2017.

Transportation


Residents of Lac-Mégantic on July 10, 2016, mark third anniversary of the train derailment and explosion, reiterating their demand for genuine rail safety measures and that the rail line carrying dangerous goods be rerouted outside their community. Rail workers across the country continue their fight for the safety of workers and passengers to ensure there are no more Lac-Mégantics.


Toronto arbitration hearing, September 16, 2016, forces Air Canada to reinstate editor of New Horizons bulletin for in-flight workers and another flight attendant. The workers had been arbitrarily fired for speaking out about their working conditions and problems facing Air Canada workers.


Striking workers at the Port of Montreal join October 15, 2016, action demanding changes to labour laws that favour the workers, including a higher minimum wage.


A demonstration is held October 21, 2016, outside an event at the Ritz-Carlton in Montreal promoting the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement signed with the European Union.



Maritime workers and allies march to the Transport Canada offices in Vancouver on November 3, 2016, denouncing the Liberal government’s signing of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement with the European Union (top). Stewart, BC picket (bottom).


Convoy of hundreds of trucks converges on National Assembly in Quebec City on November 19, 2016, as Quebec truckers affirm their dignity and rights.


Demonstration in Hamilton November 24, 2016, against privatizing public transit and Hydro One, marks the 110th anniversary of the 1906 Amalgamated Transit Union strike in that city for public transit. Vigorous day of action by maritime workers January 12, 2017, demands government defend maritime jobs threatened by the neo-liberal free trade agreement with Europe. Actions take place in Victoria (photo above), Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal.


Transportation workers in Vancouver rally February 23, 2017, against the federal government’s plans to privatize sea and airports and dismantle cabotage, and denounce its endorsement of the Canada Transportation Act review which advocates deregulation and privatization to hand over control of maritime, air, rail and truck transport systems to the global oligopolies.

Post Office


Postal workers rally in Montreal  in defence of their rights, August 6, 2016, during contract negotiations with Canada Post.


Calgary postal workers and supporters picket September 17, 2016, in support of public post office and in opposition to the Liberal government’s “Mandate Review” of the Post Office through which they are attacking workers’ rights.


Postal workers demonstrate at Laval West depot April 6, 2017, expressing outrage over Canada Post’s unilateral changes to working conditions of letter carriers in urban areas.

Public Services


Municipal workers rally against Quebec Bill 110 dictating public sector working conditions, in Quebec City, May 12, 2016.


Public service workers hold coast-to-coast day of action on June 8, 2016, to back demands in the face of attacks on sick leave and right to negotiate. Photo above from Gatineau.

Ontario public sector workers oppose privatization of public assets at Labour Day 2016 in Toronto.

Public sector workers rally in Winnipeg, September 2016, to oppose ending of grain shipments from the Port of Churchill. Pickets also take place in Churchill.

Montreal blue collar workers protest Couillard Liberal government’s anti-worker Bill 110, October 17, 2016, at a government press conference.


Workers’ Forum, October 27, 2016

Federal public service workers’ demonstrations across the country October 31, 2016, include a large rally at the Prime Minister’s Office in Ottawa (photo above). Workers protest the Liberal government’s refusal to negotiate a new collective agreement and its failure to resolve the cases of tens of thousands of unpaid or underpaid workers.


Workers at the Blue Water Bridge in Point Edward, near Sarnia, Ontario hold a strike rally November 27, 2016, to reject major concessions on benefits, pensions, maternity and parental leave, hours of work and scheduling.

Health Care


Mass mobilization of workers, residents and families September 12, 2016, to defend public seniors care on BC’s Sunshine Coast.


Rally February 3, 2017, at the Points West Living Alberta corporate office in Edmonton demands the company lift the lockout of its employees in Cold Lake and stop attacking their wages and working conditions and the living conditions of the seniors in their care.


Striking Quebec paramedics demonstrate in Montreal March 16, 2017. The rally is one of three, with others held at the National Assembly in Quebec City and in New Richmond in Gaspésie. The actions are part of a strike of nearly 6,000 paramedics, emergency medical dispatchers and support staff in the pre-hospital sector in Quebec.

Education

Rally in Vancouver October 20, 2016, opposes firing of all members of  the Vancouver School Board for refusing to make cuts required to implement “balanced budget law.”


Workers’ Forum, November 24, 2016

Teachers and education workers, supported by parents and students, take to the streets in Halifax December 5, 2016, to reject government threats to impose collective  agreements that attack teachers’ working conditions and students’ learning conditions.


Nova Scotia government is forced to back down from threats to impose agreements on teachers and large rallies are held in Halifax, Yarmouth (photo above) and Antigonish on December 6, 2016, reiterating the demand: Negotiate, Don’t Dictate!

Teachers and education workers hold the first province-wide strike action in the history of Nova Scotia on February 17, 2017 in defence of public education and to protest the Liberal government’s decision to legislate contracts. Photo shows teachers surrounding the provincial legislature in Halifax that day.

Defend the Rights of All Working People


Defence of the rights of migrant workers and precarious workers at May Day 2016 in Toronto (above) and Edmonton.


Rally on Ontario Injured Workers’ Day, June 1, 2016, demands justice for injured workers.


Workers’ Forum, September 15, 2016


Mass rally on October 1, 2016, at Ontario Legislature demands changes to labour law that favour workers, particularly those forced into precarious work.


Historic Harvesting Freedom Caravan concludes 1,500 kilometre journey from Southern Ontario to Ottawa demanding justice for migrant farmworkers with a rally in Ottawa, October 6, 2016.

March in Montreal October 15, 2016, calls for higher minimum wage and improvement of working conditions of precariously employed workers.


The Ontario Network of Injured Workers’ Groups holds its 25th Annual Christmas rally in Toronto December 12, 2016, and demands the government investigate the WSIB. Picket actions were also held in Thunder Bay and Windsor.


February 21, 2017 press conference in Baie-Comeau on Quebec’s North Shore launches campaign to eliminate the “black hole,” the period between the end of unemployed workers’ employment insurance benefits (EI) and when they return to work, where they are left without income. Pictured, left to right are: Nelson Breton, Métallos; Julie Brassard, Mouvement Action-Chômage Charlevoix; Claude Guimond, Le Conseil national des chômeurs et chômeuses; Yvon Payeur, Confédération des syndicats nationaux; Line Sirois, Action-Chômage Haute-Côte-Nord; and Jack Picard.

Our Security Lies in the Fight for the Rights of All!


Protests in Ottawa June 29, 2016, against the summit of “North American Leaders,” reject plans of  the governments of Canada, the U.S. and Mexico to exploit the land, resources and labour of those three countries in the service of North American oligopolies and embroil the peoples of North America in imperialist war preparations.


Onkwehonwe (Indigenous people) lead thousands in spirited opening march of World Social Forum in Montreal on August 9, 2016.


Edmonton Walk for Water, September 11, 2016, in support of the courageous resistance of the Standing Rock Sioux to the building of the Dakota Access Pipeline.


Sisters in Spirit vigils across the country October 4, 2016 continue demand for justice for missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls and condemn the Trudeau government’s failure to uphold the rights of Indigenous peoples. Above photo from vigil on Parliament steps in Ottawa.

Students from 58 colleges and universities in 36 cities hold actions November 2, 2016, to demand the elimination of tuition fees and affirm that education is a right. Photo above is from action in Halifax.


Protest in Drummondville, November 4, 2016, against passing of Bill 106 which facilitates further monopoly plunder of Quebec’s natural resources.


Actions organized November 7-9, 2016, by social organizations from many sectors in Quebec call for an end to the neo-liberal austerity agenda and re-investment in social programs. Above photo is from action in Quebec City.


An emergency rally is held in Vancouver November 29, 2016, following the Trudeau government’s approval of the Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion.


Vancouver activists hold 100th weekly picket January 31, 2017, to demand the repeal of Bill C-51, the Anti-Terrorism Act, 2015.


Sister marches to Women’s March on Washington take place in cities across Canada on January 21, 2017 as mass resistance in the U.S., Canada and around the world sets the tone for the Trump presidency. Women affirm their rights and their place in the front ranks of the fight for the rights of all. Above photo from march in Calgary.


Demonstrations are held in Ottawa (above) as well as Toronto and Montreal January 30, 2017, against assault on rights imposed with President Trump’s travel and refugee ban.


Beginning January 30 in dozens of communities from coast to coast to coast, thousands gathered to pay their respects and offer their sincere condolences to the victims of the
January 29, 2017, shootings in Quebec City, their families and the Muslim community. Vigil above takes place in Whitehorse.


Marches across Canada on February 14, 2017 reaffirmed the demand for justice for missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls and denounced the paternalism of the Trudeau government’s treatment of Indigenous peoples’ hereditary, treaty and constitutional rights. Pictured is Women’s Memorial March in Vancouver.


Militant mass actions in Canada marking International Women’s Day affirm that women are determined to renew their resistance and plant the flag of women’s rights. Photo shows Toronto, March 11, 2017.


Picket in Windsor March 18, 2017,  marks the 14th anniversary of the criminal U.S. invasion of Iraq with the demand for an end to U.S.-led wars of terror.


Canadians from all walks of life oppose the U.S. missile attack on Syria and Canada’s support for U.S. aims of regime change and war. Photo of Ottawa protest April 8, 2017.

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