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Get ready for Canada-bashing (again)

Like many Canadians, the debate over President Barack Obama's health-care reforms left me both bemused and annoyed. Bemused that our neighbours have such difficulty taking even a timid step toward healthy common sense. But annoyed that Canada's good name was caught in the crossfire.

Canadians are healthier, and live longer, than Americans -- and we pay considerably less for the privilege. So it rankles to see private health lobbyists taking such far-fetched potshots at our cheaper, fairer system.

Canadian International Labour Film Festival

Sunday, November 22, 2009 (All day) - Sunday, November 29, 2009 (All day)

Location

50 Cornwall Street, Suite 314
Toronto, ON
Canada
43° 39' 43.092" N, 79° 21' 28.8432" W

IMAGINE A WORLD where thousands of films are made about workers and the conditions under which they live, work, fight, and succeed in their daily lives!

2009 will mark the first-ever Canadian Labour International Film Festival (CLiFF). This will also mark the first ever labour-oriented film festival in Canada.

The world of labour has found it increasingly difficult to communicate its message as fewer and fewer people have greater control over the means of communication - the media.

It is more important than ever that working people be able to tell their own stories in their own words and in their own images.

Good Green Jobs For All Conference

Saturday, November 7, 2009 - 12:00am - 3:30pm

Location

Allstream Building at Exhibition Place
105 Princes' Blvd
Toronto, ON
Canada
43° 38' 4.5888" N, 79° 24' 35.7696" W

We are coming together to build a green movement for all across Greater Toronto with good jobs, equity and social justice, and environmental sustainability.

The high cost of contracting out: B.C. HandyDart strike

On Saturday, October 24 Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1724 -- representing 500 drivers throughout the Lower Mainland operating HandyDart, a specialized bus service for people with disabilities -- held a rally of approximately 300 drivers, riders and supporters in Burnaby, British Columbia. The rally announced a strike that began October 26.

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Bonuses for Canwest bosses?

Greed is good. For a few people, at least. Greed has certainly been good for Canwest executives and directors who have been looking after themselves while ordinary workers get screwed as the company restructures.

When Canada’s largest media conglomerate filed for court protection against creditors for a portion of the company on Oct. 6, 2009, dozens of recently laid-off employees learned they would lose promised severance pay.

For Pat Vanderburg, who has worked for CHBC TV in Kelowna, B.C. for the past 23 years, this will amount to a loss of  over $95,000.

About 80 non-union retirees will lose promised Canwest-paid medical, dental and life insurance benefits. In addition, 120 former employees are facing reduced pensions.

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Ford negotiations: Time to end the era of concessions

The Canadian Auto Workers (CAW) and the Ford Motor Company have been engaged in contract talks, scheduled to resume formally on October 26. Ford is demanding that the union give up the same package of concessions that workers at GM and Chrysler gave up last spring, as part of the conditions of those companies receiving government aid. The union is demanding that Ford commit to maintain a specific proportion of investment in Canada as a condition of agreeing to concessions.

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It's time to organize: Labour movement needs to capture the popular imagination

Unions are stuck in a rut that seems to be getting deeper every day. We are losing members to layoffs, plant shutdowns and to bankruptcies that are the result of a worldwide financial crisis. Our membership and influence are shrinking at exactly the moment when union power is needed to protect millions of workers from wage rollbacks, outsourcing, unemployment and the devastation of entire communities dependent on single industries.

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Needed: Good jobs, decent pay

The good jobs for all march in Toronto this June. Despite new job growth numbers, the OECD is predicting that our current unemployment rate of 8.4 per cent will rise to over 10 per cent by next year.

Related rabble.ca story:

Labour and human rights activists under siege in the Philippines

A high-level International Labour Organization (ILO) Mission to the Philippines wrapped up on September 29, feeding hopes that international attention will help stem the tide of violence and intimidation that has been unleashed on Filipino trade union organizers and human rights advocates.

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Alert! Radio from Canadian Dimension

Public Water Campaigns; Workers Assembly in Toronto; Palestinian rap group Da Arabian MCs

October 8, 2009
| Alert! Radio #129 - Public Water Campaigns (David Jacks); Workers Assembly in Toronto (Herman Rosenfeld); Palestinian rap group Da Arabian MCs (DAM)
Length: 58:56
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