Category Archives: Working Class

Support the just demands of CN wail workers!

Over 3,000 Canadian National Railway workers on Strike

Picket lines in Port Robinson

At 12:01 am Eastern Standard Time on November 19, about 3,200 Canadian National Railway conductors, trainpersons and yard workers went on strike, mainly over issues of workers’ health and safety, which are also issues of public health and safety. The workers are members of the Teamsters Canada Rail Conference (TCRC).

In a press release dated November 16, the TCRC explained:), which served the legally required 72-hour strike notice during the evening of November 15. The TCRC reports that it was unable to reach a deal with CN, as the company remains unwilling to address the workers’ concerns.

The labour contract of these workers expired on July 23. The monopoly media are reporting that talks are ongoing with CN at this time.

Picket line goes up in Saskatoon, as strike begins on November 19

Prince George

In a press release dated November 16, the TCRC explained:

“CN currently requires TCRC members to operate trains alone from outside of the locomotive, hanging on to moving trains with one hand while operating a remotely controlled locomotive with the other. Railroaders are expected to do this in rain and in freezing temperatures, sometimes for distances of up to about 17 miles.

“The union’s demands to cease these dangerous practices have fallen on deaf ears and the company has refused to come to a satisfactory agreement at the negotiations table to adjust their operating practices in the interest of safety.

“The company also wants to make it more difficult to take time off and make employees work longer hours, in an attempt to get more work done with fewer people and to reduce staffing levels.

“‘Fatigue has been recognized by the Transportation Safety Board as a major safety problem in this industry. Too many railroaders are operating trains when they should be resting,’ explained the president of the TCRC, Lyndon Isaak. ‘For the safety of all Canadians, we cannot allow CN to make it even harder for our members to get the rest they need.’

“Moreover, CN is demanding that the union accept a lifetime cap on prescription drug coverage which would be tantamount to denying workers — and their families — proper treatment for some forms of cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, and other diseases.

“Wages are not a major sticking point in these negotiations.”

Montreal, November 19, 2019.

These are long-standing concerns of the rail workers, for which they have been presenting demands that remain unaddressed by the rail monopolies and the federal government.

Already, the monopoly media are playing their dirty role of paving the way for the Trudeau government to pass back-to-work legislation so that the just struggle of the workers is criminalized and the burning issues they are raising are once again swept under the rug, while workers and the public are placed at great risk. Just 12 hours after the CN workers went on strike, the Kenney government in Alberta called on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to immediately recall Parliament and enact back-to-work legislation (Parliament is not scheduled to convene until December 5). In calling for the criminalization of the striking workers and the important issues they are raising, the Kenney government shamefully invoked the failure to build pipelines, saying this puts extra pressure on CN to transport oil by rail, and also claimed to be defending farmers, saying they need to transport their crops and are already facing problems with bad weather and the trade dispute with China.

This must not be permitted to happen. All workers and the public at large must express their support for the just demand of the CN workers for a negotiated contract that addresses their concerns and demands.

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Labour Day 2019: Uphold the Dignity of Labour! Defend the Rights of All!

The Workers’ Centre of the Marxist-Leninist Party of Canada greets the workers on this Labour Day. Today, as never before, the severe crisis in which the democracy is mired reveals that the future of the society and its security lie in the workers leading the fight in defence of the rights of all! Continue reading

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ABI workers, families and allies demand an end to Alcoa/Rio Tinto/Quebec government dictate

Powerful family solidarity march with locked-out ABI workers

Over 5,000 people marched with great spirit and dignity in the streets of downtown Trois-Rivières on Saturday, May 25. They marched in honour and support of the aluminum workers in Bécancour who have stood firm in defence of their rights despite being locked out of their smelter for over 16 months by the Alcoa/Rio Tinto/Quebec Government cabal, Workers’ Forum reports in an edition devoted to the manifestation.

Workers came from many regions of Quebec and as far away as Chibougamau in Northern Quebec, and Fermont, in the northern part of Quebec’s North Shore. Workers also came from Toronto and Hamilton. [More]

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This Day. 100th Anniversary of the Winnipeg General Strike

Canadian workers’ proud history of organized resistance and defence of rights

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Rally June 4, 1919, outside the building which housed the citizen’s committee.

This year marks the 100th Anniversary of the Winnipeg General Strike. On May First 1919, discouraged by post-war inflation and unemployment, Winnipeg’s metal and building workers went on strike, demanding higher wages. Winnipeg’s building trade workers walked out to gain better wages and hours. They were joined by iron workers who were fighting for company recognition of their union, the Metal Trades Council. On May 15, with the overwhelming support of its 12,000 members, the Winnipeg Labour Council called a general strike. Thirty thousand union and non-union people walked off the job. Among the first out were the city’s telephone workers. Winnipeg had no phone service for a week.  Continue reading

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This Day. A Reflection on the 100th Anniversary of the Halifax ‘Big Strike’ of 1919

Militant tradition of workers’ struggles in the Atlantic Provinces

May First, international working class day, marked the 100th anniversary of the Halifax General Strike of 1919. Events in Halifax in 1919 and after must be seen within the context of both regional, national and international developments and working-class activity. Between 1916 and 1925 the Maritimes experienced unparalleled levels of strike activity. Significantly this upsurge was not confined to the coal mining communities of the region. Economic militancy often translated into political action. Miners in industrial Cape Breton, Cumberland and Pictou counties, steelworkers in Sydney, and industrial workers in Halifax, gypsum workers in Hants County in the Annapolis Valley, and workers in Amherst, New Glasgow and Saint John participated in the upsurge of radicalism seen across the country. In March 1919 a “great mass meeting” in Sydney endorsed a resolution by Nova Scotia Federation of Labour organizer Clifford C. Dane of Pictou for a strike of all Nova Scotia workers if the provincial government failed to enact legislation for an eight-hour day. [1]

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May Day 2019: Workers must strengthen the work to advance their own demands

May Day 2019 – Day of Working Class Unity and Struggle in Defence of the Rights of All

– Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist) –

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Montreal, May 1, 2018.

Hail May Day! International day of working class unity and affirmation of the struggle for its rights, claims and emancipation!

The Communist Party of Canada (Marxist-Leninist) sends its militant May Day greetings to the workers of Canada, Quebec and around the world. The working class is showing in deeds its mettle and maturity in the battle for its rights, claims and emancipation. Working people are striving for their own empowerment in economic and political affairs. Workers are speaking out in defence of what belongs to them by right and increasingly using their own organized means of communication to express their views and opinions. Continue reading

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May Day 2019: Actions across Canada

All events May 1 unless otherwise noted

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