Posts Tagged ‘unifor’

Halifax shipyard workers protest alleged workplace bullying following suicide

Tuesday, December 3rd, 2013

NOV. 29 UPDDATE: Flash – Shipyard president Kevin McCoy claims to have “investigated” the bullying allegation below and found “no evidence of it.” No duh! And the protesters lost a day’s pay.

By Patrick Odell, Global News, Nov. 28, 2013

Hundred of workers at Halifax’s Irving Shipyard walked off the job Thursday, angry about the way management is treating them and what they call an oppressive work environment. Ross Lord reports.

HALIFAX, NS – Workers at the Irving-owned Halifax Shipyard walked off the job Thursday morning in protest after they say a co-worker killed himself after being suspended by management.

Rick Rose of Unifor says a worker took his own life on Wednesday after he was suspended for 30 days.

Rose says the death came after a series of disciplinary actions involving various employees.

He says other employees are upset over what they say is an increase in disciplinary actions by management.

In an email statement, Irving said it was “devastated” to find out one of its workers, whom it identified as Peter MacKenzie, had died.

Police were on scene to keep things under control and so traffic doesn’t get back up. Protesters were crossing Barrington Street earlier in the morning, which caused lengthy delays for downtown commuters.

Rose says he is meeting with management today about the death and the workers’ grievances.


The intriguing angle to this bullying-suicide-protest story is that troubles began when Irving brought in an American president and he, in turn, imported an American management team. Since then, there have been 14 disciplinary dismissals. One triggering a suicide. What did they do differently? Why did the new team not acclimate to the culture of the shipyard? Were the Americans sent in to “clean up” the shipyard with respect to workers? Was previous Canadian management considered to cooperative with the union? Were the Americans sent in to bust the union?

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Posted in Broadcasts: Video, TV, radio, webinars, Fairness & Social Justice Denied, Media About Bullying | No Archived Comments | Post A Comment () »

Naomi Klein: Working stiffs as corporate “overburden”

Thursday, September 5th, 2013

At the launching convention this past Labour Day weekend of a new Canadian union — Unifor — Naomi Klein, author of The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism, spoke.

Her book describes the international conservative movement to privatize governments, to bust unions and to commodify natural resources for corporate profits. The Shock Doctrine is the impetus for removing public control of the city of Detroit and putting it in the hands of a financial manager prepared to sell off nearly all public assets and privatize all services. The Shock in her doctrine is the false claim that we are broke and cannot afford to help citizens anymore. [If only we weren't so busy making expensive wars that sap taxpayer funds.] Governments then impose austerity on the public and worsen their situations. Then, they make the argument that corporations know better how to run businesses so they should take over where government “failed.”


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Posted in Employers Gone Wild: Doing Bad Things, Fairness & Social Justice Denied, Unions | No Archived Comments | Post A Comment () »

New Canadian private sector union – Unifor – modern, progressive

Thursday, September 5th, 2013

Leave it to Canada to lead the way to rejuvenate the labor movement. A new 300,000 member union, Unifor, was launched when the CAW (auto workers) and CEP (energy and paper workers) merged. The timing — “when our economy is being hollowed, our democracy eroded and when governments have abandoned social progress in the name of austerity” — is a warning shot to austerity-mongerers that this union will still stand for social justice.

The new union was created to be “a modern, inclusive approach to serve members better and participate more effectively in our workplaces and communities.”

“As the largest private sector union in Canada, Unifor will advocate for and defend the rights of working people, in more than 20 economic sectors and in communities across Canada. We will stand for safer workplaces, secure employment, wages and benefits that provide a decent standard of living, and dignity and mutual respect in the workplace.”

“We will be a union for workers, a union for the unemployed, a union for women, a union for new Canadians, a union for young workers and the precariously employed – a union for everyone.”

In Unifor’s Constitution, one of its founding Principles is to be Progressive.

Our goal is transformative. To reassert common interest over private interest. Our goal is to change our workplaces and our world. Our vision is compelling. It is to fundamentally change the economy, with equality and social justice, restore and strengthen our democracy and achieve an environmentally sustainable future. This is the basis of social unionism — a strong and progressive union culture and a commitment to work in common cause with other progressives in Canada and around the world.

Naomi Klein was a speaker at the launch. Read about her contributions.

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Posted in Unions | No Archived Comments | Post A Comment () »

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