The DND annually gives around $4 billion of public funds to private companies rather than investing that money in building a viable public service sector and giving workers a chance to have stable Canadian standard jobs with security of employment.
September 2018. PSAC’s broad public campaign successfully halts the contracting out of cleaning services at Greenwood military base in rural Nova Scotia. The planned contracting out of cleaning services in Kingston is also reversed.
On April 3, Prime Minister Trudeau announced that his government had signed an agreement with Amazon Canada to manage the distribution of medical equipment, such as masks, gloves and ventilators that are needed in all the provinces and territories.
Trudeau did not provide any details on the value of the contract but a government news release issued later the same day said that Amazon was providing the service to Canadians at cost, without profit. Continue reading →
The refusal to stop paying the rich and increase investments in social programs has created the current situation where a health care system already over-capacity and where workers experience unsustainable workloads is now faced with the COVID-19 crisis. The reversal of all privatization schemes is in order | PEGGY MORTON
Across Canada, labs with facilities to test for COVID-19 are overwhelmed. Both the speed of results and the scope of testing are far below what is needed, as recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) and proven effective in countries like China, south Korea and Singapore. This is the case right across Canada and shows the need for significant expansion of public health laboratories. Continue reading →
The present aim of maximum private profit has obviously failed with regard to having a secure supply chain of necessary health care products or it would not be a matter of discussion and concern | Commentary by K.C. ADAMS
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced Canada’s Plan to Mobilize Industry to fight COVID-19. He said the plan will “create pathways to deploy resources to domestic manufacturers and businesses so they can help during this critical time. […] The Plan introduces new measures to directly support these businesses to rapidly scale up production or re-tool their manufacturing lines to develop products made in Canada that will help in the fight against COVID-19. These products could include critical health and safety supplies and equipment, including personal protective equipment, sanitization products, diagnostic and testing products, and disease tracking technology. […] It focuses on domestic capacity building, innovative solutions, and procurement of essential supplies.” Continue reading →
On December 17th, protests took place in Kiev against the Ukrainian land reform.
By DMITRY KOVALEVICH
The government of Vladimir Zelensky of Ukraine adopted in November so-called ‘land reform’, in accordance of the demands made by the IMF amongst other international financial organizations. The reform opens the way for the mass privatization of Ukraine’s agricultural lands. The IMF has been making these demands for many years but assorted Ukrainian presidents have tried to postpone such an unpopular decision. Recent polls show that the overwhelming majority of Ukrainians of all political persuasions are opposed to land privatization, from far-right to far-left. Continue reading →
Nova Scotia Liberals hand over decision-making in education to private interests | KEVIN CORKILL*
The Nova Scotia Liberal government is using Bill 72, the Education Reform Act, to legalize turning education over to private interests and by doing so destroying existing arrangements including the right of teachers and education workers, organized into unions, to negotiate their wages and conditions of work. Continue reading →
Workers fight to get Canada Post to recognize their rights | LOUIS LANG*
Negotiations are taking place between Canada Post and the Canadian Union of Postal Workers. The contract of the Rural and Suburban Mail Carriers (RSMC) expired on December 31, 2017, and the contract of the Urban Operations group expires on January 31. Continue reading →
An awesome lake effect snow squall (snowsquall) drops heavy snow over Sudbury on February 27, 2014. Lake effect squalls from Georgian Bay are noted for their persistence and linear banding, producing blinding visibility on Highway 400.
The following reflection was written on February 28, 2014 but for some reasons was not published at the time. I am posting it now in the midst of the extreme cold weather front that is gripping Canada and the United States.
The view from Blantyre
By TONY SEED
WHEN extreme weather event strikes, the reporting of the media proceeds from the premise of the insurance companies: it is a supernatural “act of God,” a natural disaster divorced from the social conditions made by man. It has become a genre and given a name – disaster journalism. It was all so “unexpected.” Hurricane Katrina? Just blew in suddenly from the Gulf. That ice storm in Atlanta? The weather suddenly shifted upstate in the morning. That tsunami in the Indian Ocean? No-one at the U.S. Pacific Tsunami Warning Center in Hawaii had the phone number of the Sri Lanka president and hence the island received no warning. Thousands of people, mainly poor fishers, along the eastern and southern coastline were engulfed by the deep blue sea, as if an act of Buddha. Due to the large number of victims, that far-off disaster did make the evening news. These were not “accidents”; natural disasters became crimes. Continue reading →
(January 20, 2017) – On January 12, sailors, longshoremen, seaway and other workers took part in militant demonstrations against the neo-liberal Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA). Demonstrations were held in St. John’s, Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver, Victoria and Prince Rupert. In St. John’s, the action was held at the constituency office of MP Seamus O’Regan. In Montreal, the action took place in front of the constituency office of Transport Minister Marc Garneau. In Toronto, workers marched to the constituency office of Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland (who oversaw the CETA file while International Trade Minister). In Vancouver, workers protested at the constituency office of Liberal MP Hedy Fry, while in Victoria the action took place at the docks in Ogden Point, and in Prince Rupert workers rallied at the Transport Canada office. Continue reading →
The French monopoly Veolia is the largest water privatizer in the world. Veolia is one of the P3 partners that Edmonton City Council contracted in November 2015 to build the private part of the Millwoods extension to Edmonton’s LRT Line. In addition to the need to oppose all P3 contracts on principle, it should also be noted that Veolia itself should be opposed on the grounds that it is guilty of numerous criminal activities against the Palestinian people. In fact, it has been described as the one monopoly that benefits most from the Israeli occupation of Palestine. Continue reading →
While in Paris during the COP21 UN Conference on Climate Change, Prime Minister Trudeau joined with multi-billionaire Bill Gates and the war presidents François Hollande of France and Barack Obama of the U.S. to launch “Mission Innovation” and its private sector partner the “Breakthrough Energy Coalition.” The initiative is not a movie spinoff but rather a public-private partnership (P3) for privileged private interests to become even richer using public funds in the booming climate change sector. Continue reading →
At 10:30 am on November 4, surrounded by a lot of hoopla, Justin Trudeau was sworn in as Canada’s 23rd prime minister. Prior to that, Stephen Harper tendered his formal resignation to the Governor General in a private meeting.
The cabinet is comprised of 31 members including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau who is also Minister for Youth and Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs. It is comprised of 15 women and 16 men. The average age is 52, with ages ranging from 30 to 69. Continue reading →
Where public interest feels the pain, private interest is sure to gain
By KEVIN CORKILL
Diana Whalen, Minister of Finance for the Liberal McNeil government of Nova Scotia, delivered a pre-budget speech to the Chamber of Commerce of Halifax on March 25, 2015. She began with some truths: fewer working age people live in Nova Scotia; and, in her words, “The status quo is really not working for us.”
Fair enough, but who is the “us” for which the status quo is not working? Her government is attacking the claims of public sector workers on the value they produce. Her government is privatizing public services resulting in social wealth being diverted away from the public and into the pockets of private interests. Continue reading →
Public sector workers are not a cost to the economy; quite the contrary, they are producers of value
An article in the Halifax Chronicle Herald suggests public sector workers are a cost to the economy and should be eliminated. The item entitled “John Bragg: Cut civil service to help dig N.S. out of debt” quotes Bragg, the president and CEO of Oxford Frozen Foods Ltd. saying, “Reducing Nova Scotia’s civil service down to the national average would result in savings of $836 million a year.” Continue reading →
Defend Public Services and the Workers Who Provide Them, Halifax May Day 2012
Anti-worker comments from John Bragg, president and CEO of Oxford Frozen Foods Ltd. are the latest in the neo-liberal propaganda war for privatization of public services and seizure of public assets. The ruling capitalist elite are in crisis over where to invest their accumulated social wealth. They are in a blind alley as they refuse to look to a new pro-social direction for the economy. With few options open to them on the front of private enterprise that would boost their profits, they are desperate to pillage public services through privatization and to plunder the public treasury with handouts and public-private-partnerships. Continue reading →
LOUIS LANG on vindictive moves against public sector workers
Collective bargaining for more than 100,000 employees of the federal public service, represented by the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC), and the employer, the Treasury Board, have been underway for several months. On September 10, Treasury Board negotiators tabled a proposal that would gut the sick leave provisions for these workers. This proposal comes in addition to other changes it has proposed including privatizing management of sick leave. Continue reading →
Workers’ Forum (Sept. 8) – The Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC) which represents the 27 bargaining units with over 100,000 members has recently filed an unfair labour practice complaint in response to the unilateral actions of the Treasury Board of Canada to “claw back sick leave benefits from employees.” PSAC contends that Treasury Board has been sending misleading communications to public service workers while the two sides are in negotiations announcing its intention to impose a Short Term Disability scheme to replace the present provisions of the contract which provide a system of paid sick leave. Continue reading →
Ontario Political Forum (May 23) – IN THE current election campaign the Ontario Progressive Conservatives (PCs) under leader Tim Hudak have been following a strategy which borders on hate mongering and has no place in the political arena of a civilized society. Using divisive proposals and crude, inflammatory rhetoric, the PCs are blatantly attempting to divide working people into allegedly conflicting groups and to incite one group of workers against another. Continue reading →
Ellen Dannin, Truthout (Jan. 31) – The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette announced that the administration of Gov. Tom Corbett finally decided to take action on the state’s crumbling bridges. The action it is taking is to sign a 40-year contract to privatize Pennsylvania bridges.
January 26, 2014 marked one year since Kathleen Wynne was selected as premier by 1,115 delegates to the Ontario Liberal Party’s leadership convention. Many of these were Liberal MPs, MPPs, failed candidates and party “insiders.” They were not elected as delegates but entitled to attend the convention according to provisions in the party constitution. Continue reading →
An informative backgrounder from the Public Service Alliance of Canada, October 2, 2013
THE federal government is betraying Canada’s veterans. After putting their lives on the line on behalf of all Canadians, many veterans – especially those living with serious injuries, disabilities and mental health challenges like Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder – rely on Veterans Affairs for support. The Canadian government promised to take care of them from the day they enlisted until the day they die. But drastic cuts to Veterans Affairs staff and services in the 2012 budget mean that veterans are not getting the care they need and deserve. Continue reading →
1. Mass action in Ottawa to defend the Post Office
Ottawa, January 26, 2014
TML Daily (Jan. 28) – ACROSS the country from January 25 to 27, postal workers and their supporters held actions to express their outrage against plan of the Harper government and Canada Post to wreck the post office. Continue reading →
Postal workers face the challenge of Harper government’s attacks
By LOUIS LANG*
TML Daily (Jan. 24) – POSTAL WORKERS are continuing their fight against the “Five Point Action Plan” announced by Canada Post in December 2013 one day after the adjournment of the House of Commons. The plan consists of the elimination of home delivery, a drastic increase in the cost of postal services, accelerated privatization of retail outlets and further attacks on the wages, working conditions and benefits of postal workers. Continue reading →
THE elimination of Canada Post’s door to door delivery and 8000 letter carrier positions sounds like a “fait accompli.” Most of the media latched onto this well orchestrated announcement like it is a done deal. Some investigative journalism might have exposed the outright deceptions in the announcement and the collusion between the Conference Board of Canada and the President of Canada Post who is a director on this board. Continue reading →
CANADIANS are understandably concerned with the prospects for the country. At this stage in history, people are blocked from setting the aim, agenda and direction of the economy. The ruling elite expect the people to accept the dictate of the monopolies and the government for those features of modern democratic life that should belong to the people by virtue of being members of the polity.
A budget is an accounting tool of the economy. The expenditures and revenue of a nation, institution, collective or individual exist within a dialectical relationship. The ideo-political considerations of a budget both expenditures and revenue are set by those who control the nation, institution, collective or individual. The ideo-political considerations are the bedrock on which the aim of the nation, institution, collective or individual is fashioned and the expenditures and subsequent necessary revenue determined within the budget. More…
Veteran postal worker LOUIS LANG, former president of the Ottawa Local of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers, exposes what is behind the demagoguery of Canada Post about “falling revenues”: privatization, cut-backs in services and attacking the wages, benefits and working conditions of postal workers
[TML Daily] – CANADA POST recently announced that it was facing a $327 million operating loss and is considering cut backs in service like reducing home delivery from five to four or even three days per week. The spokesperson stated that “all options are on the table” including closing some of the 6,500 retail outlets across the country as well as consolidating its 21 sorting centres to “just major cities.” Continue reading →
Veteran postal worker LOUIS LANG, former president of the Ottawa Local of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers, in a sobering analysis of the tentative contract and the pressures exerted to force this collective to accept concessions and severe roll-backs by eliminating the active participation of the workers, raises the question:
Where do we go from here?
AFTER MORE THAN A MONTH of ratification meetings across the country, postal workers voted 57 per cent in favour of accepting the proposed tentative contract. The details of the vote are yet to be released but all indications are that the turnout was very low. In fact, one of the most important issues (other than the concessions and roll-backs) that needs to be discussed is the significance of the number of workers who didn’t participate in the ratification votes. Continue reading →
TML Daily. The present neo-liberal direction of Canada Post that turns a public service over to private interests and uses technological developments to attack the rights of the working class is a matter of concern for all Canadians.
WITHOUT ANY SCRUPLES, Canada Post executives have used their privileged positions in control of the publication of the company accounts to pressure postal workers to vote yes to the proposed neo-liberal concessionary collective agreement. The anti-worker diatribe in the 3rd quarter report says, “A failure to ratify could worsen Canada Post’s significant challenges and make aspects of the tentative agreements unaffordable.” Continue reading →