Covid-19 post-crisis fight for worker rights and maintaining services for the vulnerable

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Pondering
Covid-19 post-crisis fight for worker rights and maintaining services for the vulnerable

https://www.cbc.ca/news/world/pandemic-unequal-usa-1.5511837

There will be a second wave, but before that workers and activists should be prepared to take advantage of the lull to make some demands.

This article is about the US but it applies here too.

"We've kept the whole damn country running," she said of the working poor.

"We're the ones you rely on. When everything's falling apart and breaking down, we're the ones you're calling essential employees.

"Maybe, this will be a huge wake-up call for people ... This is really going to be our moment, to start pushing back."...

.....

One thing that binds a few of the people interviewed for this story is a hope that when the short-term panic subsides and life slowly reverts to its less chaotic state, people will demand longer-term changes.

"This feels like the awakening of a sleeping giant," Jones said.

There will be immediate push back that the world/Canada cannot afford to improve things now due to the economic devastation of Covid 19.

We have to be ready with information about the decades of tax cuts, with numbers, and relevant other information like who has the money now.

Basic income is now a no-brainer as is pharmacare to help individuals recover.

This will be the moment to unionize workers. They will not have to fear losing their jobs and if any do the instant the second wave begins they will have them back. They can't be all be fired anyway. It's a worker's market in which employers have refused to compete perferring to rely on immigration. 

They may plead poverty, but they will find the billions for however long this takes so they can find the billions to treat workers decently or at least something like it.  The workers keeping the country running deserve rewards beyond just "thanks". 

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Link

Syed Hussan

BUILD ORGANIZATIONS
* When this is over, the 1% will impose austerity to 'balance the books'
BUILD ORGANIZATIONS
* They will let some of us die - disabled, poor, homeless, undocumented, incarcerated
BUILD ORGANIZATIONS
* They are deepening their powers, expanding policy and border guards
BUILD ORGANIZATIONS
* Once the crisis passes, evictions will increase
BUILD ORGANIZATIONS
* They want a return to normal - but normal was the slow death before this fast death
BUILD ORGANIZATIONS
* They are turning over union contracts, expanding definition of 'essential'
BUILD ORGANIZATIONS
* They will impose curfews and use police to clear the streets
BUILD ORGANIZATION
* The borders are closed
BUILD ORGANIZATIONS
* They are bailing out oil companies, and banks
BUILD ORGANIZATIONS

Pondering

Thank-you. 

This is a link to a video of Cabot Square where a day centre has been set up by the city to feed the homeless and give them hand-washing stations but it is still outside and this is still winter.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZBl_NNe2YBE

What the 1% intends and what will happen need not be the same thing. The 1% desperately wants multiple pipelines out of Alberta but they aren't getting them. They are not all powerful. 

Essential workers have a very different concept of their collective value to society and the strength that gives them. While in crisis they can't be organized but once restrictions are lifted they will be ready to demand their due. 

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

There is an alternative

quote:

TINA (There Is No Alternative).

We talk about dramatic shifts within capitalism, the historical fact that mass movements from below have, at certain moments, transformed politics-as-usual. Think of the previously unimaginable changes made reality by women’s movements, anti-racist movements, and unions. I’ll share inspirational quotes that remind us of how societies can change even when they appear fixed forever. My favourite might be from Ursula LeGuin, who, in 2014, while accepting a lifetime achievement prize at the National Book Awards, said: “We live in capitalism. Its power seems inescapable. So did the divine right of kings. Any human power can be resisted and changed by human beings.”

Yet even as we marvel at historical victories and rationally understand that social change can and will happen in the future, the power of TINA is not easily overcome. But, but, but… hesitations bubble up. Aren’t elite classes just too powerful?… And aren’t most people actually opposed to radical activism, either because they’re satisfied enough with the status quo, or too ground down to mount resistance? Students ask each other whether things will have to get a lot worse before they get better. Even the most radically hopeful in the room, and I include myself in this bunch, struggle with moving from logically comprehending that another world is possible to actually feeling and trusting in our collective strength deeply enough to mount and sustain political resistance.

Sean in Ottawa

epaulo13 wrote:

Link

Syed Hussan

BUILD ORGANIZATIONS
* When this is over, the 1% will impose austerity to 'balance the books'
BUILD ORGANIZATIONS
* They will let some of us die - disabled, poor, homeless, undocumented, incarcerated
BUILD ORGANIZATIONS
* They are deepening their powers, expanding policy and border guards
BUILD ORGANIZATIONS
* Once the crisis passes, evictions will increase
BUILD ORGANIZATIONS
* They want a return to normal - but normal was the slow death before this fast death
BUILD ORGANIZATIONS
* They are turning over union contracts, expanding definition of 'essential'
BUILD ORGANIZATIONS
* They will impose curfews and use police to clear the streets
BUILD ORGANIZATION
* The borders are closed
BUILD ORGANIZATIONS
* They are bailing out oil companies, and banks
BUILD ORGANIZATIONS

Yes -- I have been saying that the aid to individuals is a loan that will be repaid in austerity. The aid to business is a gift the government will not take back. This is why having so much weighted to business is a real disaster as individuals will end up paying all of it.

Pondering

This was just placed in another thread but I think it pertains to the discussion I hope will continue here. 

https://springmag.ca/there-is-an-alternative?fbclid=IwAR309Hvpd2kREUpE87DiWgoXtRHTFnBQyMJsUat6dM4QRx4qxyDS5uq0Hyc

Transforming the world into something better will take collective learning, organizing, and action. But transformation is on the table in a way it hasn’t been for a long time. No lecture or textbook compares to the experience of crisis in teaching that capitalism is neither inevitable nor unbreakable. Look around: market failure, mass unemployment, public money suddenly splashing every which way in unimaginable sums. Public pressure forcing industry to retool to meet health needs. Wildcat strikes in the name of public health and worker safety. This isn’t the world neoliberalism has been telling us is the only one possible......

Cleaners and grocery store workers and workers at all other places that have been deemed essential are not happy. Tons of other workers are getting a holiday while they risk their lives with insufficient protection. 

Occupy Wallstreet began with a call from a not very well known magazine from out west (I think).  How about if we try to promote a labour day strike/march?

Most people already get the day off but it has lost all meaning. Those who labour the hardest are the ones that don't get time off.  Having it on labour day is of course symbolic but because so many people have time off the march could attract more people. 

Where is unionist?

Sean in Ottawa

Where indeed. I hope Unionist is okay. He was frustrated with this place a while ago and may be taking a break but I would have thought to see him now. I hope he will be back.

Pondering, I see your hope and idealism. Of course I hope this bears out. I fear that propaganda and power will defeat it. Perhaps I am not optimistic right now.

kropotkin1951

When it comes to bail outs not much has changed in a long time.

Sean in Ottawa

kropotkin1951 wrote:

When it comes to bail outs not much has changed in a long time.

I forgot this quote -- I heard it or something like it before.

I used to say money is not water it does not trickle down. It is metal and the magnet is at the top.

Basically the same thing.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Spain Nationalized Private Clinics To Fight COVID-19—What Happens After The Pandemic?

quote:

At the same time that, as I said earlier, the extent to which the crisis has revealed the erosion of what was once an extremely strong public healthcare system has convinced the general population of the need for strengthening again, that system properly funding it. And among the touching details, it started in Spain and has now spread to other European countries, is the ritual of a daily public applause for the healthcare workers in the public system, where people go out on their balconies at 8:00 in the evening, and applaud the work done by these people on the front lines of the crisis.

Greg Wilpert: Interesting. Now, finally, do you think that this change in management will be reversed again? I mean clearly they have already stated that this is just temporary. But what do you think will be the longer-term consequences, and will this situation go back to the way it was before?

Sebastiaan Faber: I think in principle, it’s set to revert to the status quo before the crisis. And there’s a couple of questions that have not been answered. As I said earlier, the trend has been for public healthcare services to be outsourced to private for-profit companies, which includes Spanish companies, multinational companies. And in a way, taking over the management of the private part of the healthcare system in the crisis is kind of a forceful outsourcing of that same capacity. But because the ownership of the private healthcare system is not put in question, so these multinationals are still the owners, they’re just now under management of the State government, means that it’s quite possible that those private companies will at the end of all this, present the central government with a bill for every patient, and every test, and every intervention, they have done. And it’s not clear what kind of rates they might charge, and how this will be resolved.

So I think what’ll need to happen once this is over, is another serious negotiation, or even fight, for the central government to defend the rights of patients and the right of the public system to be treated properly in this situation. I think, ultimately, it goes back to budget questions and policies, and there will, I think, be a push in Spain to at least, if not revert, then halt the trend toward cutbacks for public healthcare spending, and towards steady privatization of the healthcare system. Because if one thing has become clear in this, is that having split systems where each part kind of takes care of its own purchasing of masks, or its own purchasing of the respirators, is chaotic. And even the fact that national, the Nation States turn out to be not quite capable of producing their own healthcare supplies, including masks and respirators, has now turned out to be a real issue.

So I think in that sense, we’ll see changes in the way that people think about healthcare, and the way that governments think about healthcare.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Join RAVEN and the Council of Canadians for a three-part webinar series focussed on national resistance to LNG – aka fracked gas.

Webinar 1 – #WetsuwetenStrong and the Ethics of LNG

with Hereditary Chief Adam Gagnon and Mike Sawyer, COGC
FRIDAY APRIL 3

Start time:
4pm Pacific   |  5pm Mountain |  6pm Central |  7pm Eastern |  8pm Atlantic

Sean in Ottawa

Thinking about unionization is a joke now. 

People are reduced to 0 income and we cannot get anyone to give a shit. The betrayal of the NDP is unprecidented.

See this from the fiannce minister:

Speaking to the House of Commons finance committee, Morneau said the government stuck with three criteria for the $2,000-a-month emergency benefit for individuals to speed up payments.

Those criteria were that a worker had to have earned at least $5,000 in the last year, had to see their income drop to zero as a result of COVID-19...

https://www.nationalnewswatch.com/2020/04/02/mps-to-quiz-morneau-on-covid-19-bailout-as-pbo-releases-new-estimates-3/#.XoZOvYhKiUl

Morneau goes on to speak about those whose incomes did not drop to zero and that they may be helped now. As for the people with absolutely nothing apparently the answer is fuck-em.

The NDP voted for this piece of shit bill that writes of any who already had no income when this started. How is this not a fucking betrayal?

I cannot even get an elected New Democrat even show interest. All they do is whine about having wanted a UBI but they ignore that they voted for this garbage. They moved on and no longer care. They do not even answer.

At first we could assume that the reason was that they thought we would be covered. The CCPA has now written so much on this that we cannot pretend that they do not know.

Now the only answer is that they do not give a shit.

The answer now has to be that the NDP get destroyed completely in order to make room for a party that will do more than signal virtue. We need a party that will asnwer when people apporach them sayign they have nothing. We need a party that will stand up and fight instead of whine how it offered soemthign and did not get it so voted to fuck people who have nothing and no hope.

The NDP must be destroyed.

I do not know if I will be able to be here for this. I do not know if I can last 4 months on nothing. I do not know if I will survive this. I honestly don't. But this must never be forgotten. It cannot be swept under the rug.

No -- there will be no demonstrations as these are not allowed. We will quietly get fucked at home.

You will all have to consider how the NDP gets repaid for this abandonment in the next election.

I don't give a shit for the Conservatives. The Liberals lie and offer hope but we never expected anything to really come from them. But the NDP says its reason for existence is the vulnerable. Now it has no reason for existence.

I am not talking about some minor disagreement with the party. I am not talking about something administrative. I am talking about the party saying fuck you to people with nothing. I am talking about the Conservatives and Liberals being able to get the NDP in parliament to back a plan to fuck everyone who had no income last month.

The NDP cannot continue to pretend not to know.  They damn well do.

https://www.nationalnewswatch.com/2020/04/02/mps-to-quiz-morneau-on-covid-19-bailout-as-pbo-releases-new-estimates-3/#.XoXxlC-VmhA

https://www.policyalternatives.ca/newsroom/updates/our-social-and-economic-analysis-covid-19

Sean in Ottawa

I sent this to the CCPA

I am one of those people that all parties have chosen to ignore. 

I had no income when this virus started. My EI had run out. I am 55 years old. I was laid off at 53. I am hard to hire because I am older, I speak French but not to the standards expected in the communications industry (my field).  There is no job market. I am not experienced in retail to get a job in a grocery store (and take my chances with the virus on the front line).
Nobody seems to care. 

I know the CCPA mentions this a bit but you are all that is left. The NDP won't even respond because they signed on to the package and are defending it. Even advocacy is almost impossible because most people I reach out to cannot believe it is true. We cannot demonstrate. We cannot beg on the street.  We cannot even sell our possessions for food. We do not qualify for welfare due to assets we have that cannot be sold. 

It is absolutely crazy to see a developed country turn its back on people who have absolutely nowhere to turn.

I am scared because I now live in a country that has made it clear there is no safety net for me or anyone else in my position. 

I have some money I saved before this and will spend it. I have so credit. I can last a while before hitting the wall. I can liquidate any savings and any chance at a retirement that is not impoverished. I can at great cost liquidate what few RRSPs I have (maybe $15k) But even then I will eventually hit the wall during the crisis or the recession that will follow. I am not the worst off despite how absolutely hopeless this is - how crazy to liquidate everything at age 55. There are some in my position with nothing in the bank and no credit.

I am begging you to advocate harder for those who have nothing now. We cannot survive a long campaign to get noticed. We cannot show ourselves on the street legally now, This is a nightmare. Please help. Please find someone who cares. If you have any NDP contacts ask them why they are not speaking about us.

quizzical
Unionist

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

Where indeed. I hope Unionist is okay. He was frustrated with this place a while ago and may be taking a break but I would have thought to see him now. I hope he will be back.

I'm here, and I'm fine. Thanks for your concern Sean, and Pondering, and others who have messaged me. I have indeed been taking an extended break. Not sure why, but I won't bore you with my internal meanderings. I'm pessimistic about change these days, which is a very difficult admission for me to make (to myself, let alone to others). I'll be back, though. Meanwhile, I want to wish everyone strength, safety, good health, and solidarity! Love you all.

kropotkin1951

Thanks for posting that quizzical. Gord Johns is my MP and he is worth supporting.

It makes so much more sense to adopt Jagmeet Singh’s idea of a universal basic income payment to all Canadians. For those who don’t need it, this would be reconciled through their income tax returns. We will continue to push this common sense, straightforward approach. Let me know you views. [email protected]

 

jerrym

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Thanks for posting that quizzical. Gord Johns is my MP and he is worth supporting.

It makes so much more sense to adopt Jagmeet Singh’s idea of a universal basic income payment to all Canadians. For those who don’t need it, this would be reconciled through their income tax returns. We will continue to push this common sense, straightforward approach. Let me know you views. [email protected]

 

It makes sense to introduce a universal basic income plan not only because of this crisis but because of the extreme employment dislocation that is going to occur as self-driving vehicles begin to replace professional drivers, which is the number one job for males in North America, as automated restaurants wipe out many waiter and waitress jobs, etc. in the not-too-distant-future. Many workers would be willing to buy into this now who might not otherwise consider it until increasing automation hit them in future years because they would see a risk to their own immediate employment because of COVID19.

It would also allow people to rotate in and out of work when family and other circumstances presented challenges to working and one's other responsibilities. 

Sean in Ottawa

I am certainly behind a UBI. My problem is that advocating for this cannot be the entirety of the political response. I am furious with the NDP for using this to make the point about how great the NDP proposal is (the one they barely fought for). This is about people not political points. 

The issue is the NDP did not get this proposal accepted by Parliament. What did they do? They supported a bill that has abandonned thousands of people left to fend for themselves with no resources, no job market and nowhere to turn.

What we need to hear from the NDP is the strategy to fight for something for these people now. Not to use the devastation of our personal lives as a proof the NDP offered the right proposal.

We need the NDP to explain why they voted for this bill and how they will undo that damage.

We need the NDP to start talking in the media about the desperate people who are left out not just general words about how their plan was better but about the fact that people are screwed. They can shut up for a moment about talking about how great the NDP is for small business and getting the government to support business and fighting the Liberal power grab for a few minuters to talk about people in trouble.

We need the NDP to commit right NOW to not vote for ANYTHING in the commons if the government recalls it and does not support people. Business is important in so far as it helps people. The NDP has had some fucked up communications priorities in the last few weeks.

Even the Democrats in the US stood up to Trump and demanded improvements. Two days and they got some. The NDP folded like a cheap campaign flier. 

We need New Democrats to respond when they are approached on twitter and by email instead of blowing off people who are telling them that the Bill is leaving many out in the cold.

The NDP needs to stand up for some of its core principles.

Alternately it should fold completely and make room for a party that believes in the things the NDP used to believe in and actually fights for them.

I am fed up with the virtue signaling from the NDP about how much better their proposal was when they did not put up a fight for it and then voted to screw thousands of Canadians.

And yes, New Democrats will have to learn to deal with the well-earned criticism associated with this sell out.

I am fucking fed up with hearing New Democrats go on political shows and talk about how they are helping press the government on behalf of small business when they are not saying anything about this crisis except how much faster and better it would have been if they had got their way. What the fuck do they want to do about it?

You know why I cannot get anyone interested in the story? Becuase people actually believe that it cannot be true or the NDP would be screaming.

What are the NDP going to do now? This is not about Jagmeet Singh playing PM for a day. It is about what he can do with the MPs he has now to draw attention to people in trouble. It is about him withholding the approval of the NDP when it comes to screwing Canadians who are the most vulerable right now. those who were already unemployed when this started and already had no source of income.

This is the time we find out what is inside that nice suit he wears.

Two NDP members are responding to me. Sadly neither one is elected. The elected ones -- I have no idea what the hell they are thinking or doing.

The two that showed they really care: Svend Robinson and Andrew Cash. Wonderful people both of them. 

I have heard back now from Morgan Gay -- candidate in my riding. Another NDP canddiate that is not elected. He makes three.The responses from the elected MPs is shameful and in stark contrast. They are too busy defending the party to take interest.

You know why Svend Robinson is a legend? He actually went to the mat for people. What is the generation of MPs we have now?

I am hoping that Svend, Andrew and Morgan have pull somewhere. I am hoping they can help get the NDP to give a shit. I don't mean as an opportunity to say how good they are. I mean a real shit like where you fight for the people. How many times have we seen New Democrats invoke the concept of fighting for you? Not just proposing for you and running away.

You know what? I don't want to write here and defend NDP proposals when they don't defend them well enough themselves. If the UBI was such a great idea why did the NDP vote for anything else? Why didn't they seek a compromise - we know they have a lot fewer MPs. You know like extending this $2000 to more than just the poeple who had a job last month. Like at least not something less than what the Democrats got out of Trump. Yes, if you did not have a job last month you would have been better off in Trump's America. You tell me. How fucked up is that with the cherry on top of the NDP support for it?

Sean in Ottawa

jerrym wrote:

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Thanks for posting that quizzical. Gord Johns is my MP and he is worth supporting.

It makes so much more sense to adopt Jagmeet Singh’s idea of a universal basic income payment to all Canadians. For those who don’t need it, this would be reconciled through their income tax returns. We will continue to push this common sense, straightforward approach. Let me know you views. [email protected]

 

It makes sense to introduce a universal basic income plan not only because of this crisis but because of the extreme employment dislocation that is going to occur as self-driving vehicles begin to replace professional drivers, which is the number one job for males in North America, as automated restaurants wipe out many waiter and waitress jobs, etc. in the not-too-distant-future. Many workers would be willing to buy into this now who might not otherwise consider it until increasing automation hit them in future years because they would see a risk to their own immediate employment because of COVID19.

It would also allow people to rotate in and out of work when family and other circumstances presented challenges to working and one's other responsibilities. 

What is the NDP going to do now? What are they going to fight for -- right now. Not the next election but now that they voted for this bill and are advocating more money for business in news shows across the country?

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

Niki Ashton speaking live on Facebook now. She just called on the federal government to expand the CERB to EVERYONE, including seniors, the chronically unemployed, and those who made less than $5,000 in 2019.

Unionist

Left Turn wrote:

Niki Ashton speaking live on Facebook now. She just called on the federal government to expand the CERB to EVERYONE, including seniors, the chronically unemployed, and those who made less than $5,000 in 2019.

Is that NDP policy, or just Niki policy? Sorry for asking, I just haven't been following partisan declarations much.

Pondering

They are deliberately leaving out certain people. In particular the gig economy. They want those people to take all the new jobs in delivery and grocery because they think of it as unskilled parttime worker.  If your hours are just cut back you are not eligible even if you are down to one day a week.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

Unionist wrote:

Left Turn wrote:

Niki Ashton speaking live on Facebook now. She just called on the federal government to expand the CERB to EVERYONE, including seniors, the chronically unemployed, and those who made less than $5,000 in 2019.

Is that NDP policy, or just Niki policy? Sorry for asking, I just haven't been following partisan declarations much.

The NDP initially called for giving $2,0000 a month too all Canadians; but then 3 NDP MP's voted in favour of the Liberals bill, and the NDP and many of it's MP's are defending it. Notably, Peter Julian defended it in a twitter exchange with Sean in Ottawa (on the grounds that the bill allows the government to do more than what they are currently doing if they want to), and this is a the root of Sean's current frustration with the NDP.

Sean in Ottawa

Left Turn wrote:

Unionist wrote:

Left Turn wrote:

Niki Ashton speaking live on Facebook now. She just called on the federal government to expand the CERB to EVERYONE, including seniors, the chronically unemployed, and those who made less than $5,000 in 2019.

Is that NDP policy, or just Niki policy? Sorry for asking, I just haven't been following partisan declarations much.

The NDP initially called for giving $2,0000 a month too all Canadians; but then 3 NDP MP's voted in favour of the Liberals bill, and the NDP and many of it's MP's are defending it. Notably, Peter Julian defended it in a twitter exchange with Sean in Ottawa (on the grounds that the bill allows the government to do more than what they are currently doing if they want to), and this is a the root of Sean's current frustration with the NDP.

I have had exchanges with Andrew Cash and Svend Robinson. The rest of the party -- the elected MPs are not responding. Tell me what priority does the NDP have that is greater than people facing the greatest crisis in modern Canadian history being told that they qualify for nothing?

No this is not frustration -- it is way beyond that. I am being treated like I am making a big deal out of some minor politcal disagreement.

Do you know that you could get sick and die without any help from the government and that the NDP signed on to this?

They get angry when you ask them to explain why they voted for this. 

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

epaulo13 wrote:

Join RAVEN and the Council of Canadians for a three-part webinar series focussed on national resistance to LNG – aka fracked gas.

Webinar 1 – #WetsuwetenStrong and the Ethics of LNG

with Hereditary Chief Adam Gagnon and Mike Sawyer, COGC
FRIDAY APRIL 3

Start time:
4pm Pacific   |  5pm Mountain |  6pm Central |  7pm Eastern |  8pm Atlantic

..webinar just ended. 300 people from across the country attended. tons of good information. lasted about an hour. will post the recording and links suggested once they come out..in the lng pipeline thread. 

kropotkin1951

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

jerrym wrote:

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Thanks for posting that quizzical. Gord Johns is my MP and he is worth supporting.

It makes so much more sense to adopt Jagmeet Singh’s idea of a universal basic income payment to all Canadians. For those who don’t need it, this would be reconciled through their income tax returns. We will continue to push this common sense, straightforward approach. Let me know you views. [email protected]

 

It makes sense to introduce a universal basic income plan not only because of this crisis but because of the extreme employment dislocation that is going to occur as self-driving vehicles begin to replace professional drivers, which is the number one job for males in North America, as automated restaurants wipe out many waiter and waitress jobs, etc. in the not-too-distant-future. Many workers would be willing to buy into this now who might not otherwise consider it until increasing automation hit them in future years because they would see a risk to their own immediate employment because of COVID19.

It would also allow people to rotate in and out of work when family and other circumstances presented challenges to working and one's other responsibilities. 

What is the NDP going to do now? What are they going to fight for -- right now. Not the next election but now that they voted for this bill and are advocating more money for business in news shows across the country?

I live in a parliamentary democracy where I get to vote for one MP and that is all. I don't get to vote for a party leader unless I live in their riding. I posted what my MP, who I support fully, is doing.

So you have finally woke up to the reality of the NDP cabal in Ottawa, it took long enough. I have been talking about it for years especially after Saint Jack muzzled my MP for not being tough on crime. Some days the attacks one suffers from NDP partisans makes me lose my temper and fight back. Welcome to this side of the barricades, Sean.

Sean in Ottawa

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

jerrym wrote:

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Thanks for posting that quizzical. Gord Johns is my MP and he is worth supporting.

It makes so much more sense to adopt Jagmeet Singh’s idea of a universal basic income payment to all Canadians. For those who don’t need it, this would be reconciled through their income tax returns. We will continue to push this common sense, straightforward approach. Let me know you views. [email protected]

 

It makes sense to introduce a universal basic income plan not only because of this crisis but because of the extreme employment dislocation that is going to occur as self-driving vehicles begin to replace professional drivers, which is the number one job for males in North America, as automated restaurants wipe out many waiter and waitress jobs, etc. in the not-too-distant-future. Many workers would be willing to buy into this now who might not otherwise consider it until increasing automation hit them in future years because they would see a risk to their own immediate employment because of COVID19.

It would also allow people to rotate in and out of work when family and other circumstances presented challenges to working and one's other responsibilities. 

What is the NDP going to do now? What are they going to fight for -- right now. Not the next election but now that they voted for this bill and are advocating more money for business in news shows across the country?

I live in a parliamentary democracy where I get to vote for one MP and that is all. I don't get to vote for a party leader unless I live in their riding. I posted what my MP, who I support fully, is doing.

So you have finally woke up to the reality of the NDP cabal in Ottawa, it took long enough. I have been talking about it for years especially after Saint Jack muzzled my MP for not being tough on crime. Some days the attacks one suffers from NDP partisans makes me lose my temper and fight back. Welcome to this side of the barricades, Sean.

I do not understand this, Kropotkin. I have been on this side all along. I have argued with NDP partisans. I have suppoted New Democrats when they are right and stood up when they are wrong. There is some weird interpretation you make to my posts that I have never understood. I have always thought independently and have for for what I believed right even when told that I need to shut up for the good of the party. I never believed it was in the interest of the party to suppress dissent.

UPDATE

I just got off the phone with the NDP candidate from the last election from my own rding, Morgan Gay

Like Robinson and Andrew Cash, my conversation with him was better than any exchange I have had with an elected MP. It is a tragedy for the party that these three were not elected. Morgan was in a almost no-hope riding but he really is the kind of person the NDP needs to be electing.

He has agreed to do what he can and we spoke about what those things were. He does have my trust and support. I hope that he will succeed in trying to get the NDP to gain back my support as a party.

I urged him to try to convince the NDP to undo the damage caused by the NDP voting for this package with vulnerable people excluded. The NDP can undo this in part by saying publicly that they will not support any Covid 19 measure for business or anything else unless the government extends support to the people who were unemployed when this happened, those who do not qualify because they had not earned enough, those whose EI has or will run out, students, term employees whose terms are ending, the disabled and seniors facing higher bills.

This is the time the NDP can stand its ground. If they do not then they have spat in the face of those who supported them.

The NDP should stop talking about anything else in interviews but the approximately 800,000 people who were abandoned by this legislation.

Let the NDP be the first party to realize that it was a mistake to move as fast as humanly possible rather than as fast as humanely possible.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

Somewhat off topic for this thread, but the other insidious thing about the NDP voting for this bill is that it allows the government to spend money on other things like bail out the oil and gas companies, which Trudeau and Morneau are want to do, without having to put it to a vote in parliament. This at a time when we should begin a staged wind down of Canada's oil and gas industry in the face of climate change.
 

Misfit Misfit's picture

PLEASE SIGN THIS PETITION!!!

I don't particularity like leadnow for what they have always done for the Liberals federally during every election that they have shilled for them. However, they have a petition circulating to draw attention to the many Canadians like Sean who the CERB program has overlooked and abandoned.

I found this on Judy Rebick's Twitter feed this morning...
--------------------------------

Millions of people are excluded from the Canada Emergency Response Benefit as it currently stands. Add your name to this petition calling on

@JustinTrudeau

to close the gaps, so anyone who needs to can access the benefit: https://you.leadnow.ca/p/covid19-cerb/?source=tw… #CERB

------------------------

I offer a very sincere thank you to Ms. Rebick for posting this, and also a strong thank you to Sean for drawing such needed attention to this serious oversight with the program.

Sean in Ottawa

Misfit wrote:

PLEASE SIGN THIS PETITION!!!

I don't particularity like leadnow for what they have always done for the Liberals federally during every election that they have shilled for them. However, they have a petition circulating to draw attention to the many Canadians like Sean who the CERB program has overlooked and abandoned.

I found this on Judy Rebick's Twitter feed this morning...
--------------------------------

Millions of people are excluded from the Canada Emergency Response Benefit as it currently stands. Add your name to this petition calling on

@JustinTrudeau

to close the gaps, so anyone who needs to can access the benefit: https://you.leadnow.ca/p/covid19-cerb/?source=tw… #CERB

------------------------

I offer a very sincere thank you to Ms. Rebick for posting this, and also a strong thank you to Sean for drawing such needed attention to this serious oversight with the program.

Signed thank you

Sean in Ottawa

If anyone has ideas or can participate - Sent this to my MP:

While I have not yet heard any follow up from your last email, I hope it means you are still working on trying to get attention to this crisis of resources for many people like me. We now know some 800,000+ unemployed people are affected without any targeted Covid19 benefit.. 

I want to ask you advice on something I would like to do. Particularly if you know of any resources that I may access to do this.

There are employers out there who want work and there are people desperate as I am to find it. 

The government is building aid packages and improving them as we know but there will always be workers who are not covered and need jobs, and employers who are not able to continue without workers.

I am wondering if there could be support to build a we resource that connects these two together. 

1) Connect employers who want work done that can be done from home 

2) Employers who are in essential sectors who want work done (everything from helping farmers plant etc)

AND

1) people who have no coverage under any existing program

These would be matched with resources such as those potential transportation (key when safe transportation is an issue) and resources to work from home.

There would be employers who in this time may want to connect to the people who most need a job out of goodwill.

It is important that the most critical functions continue. It would be best if we can connect the people most in need with those in the greatest need for workers.

I see this less like a listing site and more, if you will, like a matching site. Workers without resources or Covid benefits (those who need this to survive) would be able to sign up and have their skills presented along with their geographic location. Demand areas where the economy still requires workers amid the shutdown would be listed and employers would be there offering work. This is some activity we can still have in this economy in a time where some employers cannot find essential workers and some workers without any benefits cannot find work.

This would include people in the gig economy who also have no coverage if they did not make enough or did not have work at the time this started. It would allow members of the public also to get certain services done. It can include those willing to go get groceries as well. Right now these services are predominantly being offered by American companies exploiting workers like Instacart. It would be great to cut out the foreign middle profiteer.

I would like to know if you know of any resources to build such a site with this priority. Not a personnel agency, not a site designed to make a profit, but free for both employers and employees. 

The site would not be perfect at the start as it would be designed to launch as quickly as possible but it can be improved over time. After the lockdown it will be helpful to helping the economy rebuild as more employers are able to take up employees.

This is an emergency for many people. This does not replace my call for help but it may relieve the pressure on some people. I would need help to do this but I know how to lead a small team to produce such a site. If you know of any people, with or without companies, in this riding who could participate, I would be grateful if you could connect us.

Sean in Ottawa

I want to call to attention the following issue:

People who had term jobs that are not renewed are very common. They are also left out as they cannot prove ceasing work due to Covid 19 even though this is exactly why many of these contracts have not been renewed.

It is impossible for the govenrment to determine who ceased work due to Covid 19, who is not working due to Covid 19 -- abd why should they? There are so few jobs that there is no worker shortage. If you have a job you have one others would want. The logic here is faulty becuase everyone is in need and there are more workers than jobs so there is no incentive needed to get people to want to work even if you were of a bent to think this was required.

Sean in Ottawa

Left Turn wrote:

Niki Ashton speaking live on Facebook now. She just called on the federal government to expand the CERB to EVERYONE, including seniors, the chronically unemployed, and those who made less than $5,000 in 2019.

Interesting her assistant was told by a EI hotline that people who did not lose their jobs due to Covid but who made $5000 last year are covered. Maybe she believes this still. The hotline is giving out wrong information so why wouldn't she?

Yes some individuals are good but the party as a whole needs to decide if it really fights for people as they advertised or not. Not seeing enough of a fight yet. Hope it is coming. My own candidate Morgan Gay, Andrew Cash and Svend Robinson are among those trying. None were elected in the last election, sadly.

The party is earning no support but yes, some individuals are.

Singh has to do better as well. Lost all respect for him. And I actually had some before this.

Pondering

I want to change the title of this thread keeping the same general meaning. Does anyone have any ideas for a more suitable title?  In particular I don't like referencing people as "the poor". 

This would be a good time to collect information on how taxes have been transferred from the wealthy and corporations to the people over the past few decades.

Guess why they can afford the following:

Joe Tsai, a Canadian Taiwanese businessman and philanthropist, owns the Brooklyn Nets basketball team and Brooklyn's Barclays Center arena. His co-founder, Jack Ma, made a separate donation of masks and testing kits in March.

Clara Tsai runs a charitable organization, the Joe and Clara Tsai Foundation, which oversees causes including economic mobility in Brooklyn.

The Tsais worked with the Greater New York Hospital Association to distribute the items in their first shipment. It contained 300,000 surgical masks that went toward 11 New York City-area nursing homes, 70,000 medical goggles donated to 11 New York City-area nursing homes and Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, and 1000 ventilators that were donated to the Mount Sinai hospital system.

The Tsais are letting the state handle the allocation of the second shipment after hearing Governor Cuomo announce that the state would be centralizing resource allocation.

The shipment on Saturday contains 1 million surgical masks and 1.3 million KN95 masks, 100,000 medical goggles and 1000 ventilators.

https://www.cnn.com/2020/04/04/tech/joe-tsai-clara-donate-masks-ventilat...

By giving it this way instead of through taxes the wealthy make themselves seem like wonderful philathropists. Really they are withholding money from the state so they can decide where it should go and get personal credit.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

Looks like Sean in Ottawa is far from alone in being left out from the government's emergency response programs for unemployed workers.

COVID-19: A third of unemployed Canadians will receive nothing from either EI or new CERB

Quote:

Analysis shows 862,000 will fall through cracks in income support programs without rapid reforms

April 2, 2020

OTTAWA – As new federal policies are created and adapted to attempt to counter the worst-case economic impacts of COVID-19, new analysis today by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) shows 862,000 unemployed workers will receive nothing from either Employment Insurance (EI) or the new Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB).

“A full one third of unemployed workers will fall through the cracks and receive no income support, unless changes are made quickly to ensure no one is left behind during this crisis,” says David Macdonald, CCPA senior economist and author of the new analysis.

Approximately 1.2 million Canadians were unemployed before COVID-19 started to significantly impact the Canadian economy, and they were joined by another 1.5 million in the initial round of COVD-19 layoffs. Of those who lost their jobs before COVID-19, 604,000 are not eligible for EI but also can’t get the CERB, because their employment didn’t cease due to the virus.

“If you were unemployed before COVID-19 hit, you get nothing from CERB, even though the prospects of finding work right now are virtually non-existent,” adds Macdonald. “Canada’s unemployed workers are sacrificing their pay in order to stop the spread of the virus. We need to recognize that and give them the support they need to survive on the economic front lines.”

A further 14% of unemployed people (390,000) are receiving some support from EI, but less than the $500 a week others will get under CERB, the CCPA analysis shows. Social assistance recipients who work under normal circumstances could also be forced to pay 100% of the CERB back in provincial clawbacks. 

Macdonald also notes that, based on comparable EI numbers, it is safe to assume that 3% or 47,000 laid off workers won’t receive the CERB even though they’d likely qualify, because they don’t know about the program given its rapid deployment. Another 175,000 workers won’t receive CERB despite being laid off after the virus hit because they didn’t make the required minimum earnings of $5,000 in 2019.

Recommendations for addressing current gaps in EI/CERB income support programs include: extending access to CERB to all unemployed persons, even if they lost their job before the onset of COVID-19; eliminating the $5,000 annual earnings requirement for eligibility; and topping up all present EI recipients to the CERB flat rate of $500 weekly if their present EI benefits fall below that level.

The federal government should also coordinate with the provinces and territories to ensure the CERB isn’t clawed back dollar-for-dollar from social assistance going to some of the most vulnerable workers. 

The full analysis will be available Thursday at www.behindthenumbers.ca.

Sean in Ottawa

This is the kind of personal difficulty that I would normally not want to share. I have reluctantly decided to let the desperation all hang out on social media in part to more credibly advocate and in part becuase this is a circumstance where you have so little left to lose. I spent another day trying to attract attention to this on twitter -- tweeting at politicians and journalists directly.

There is not a lot of time for such a campaign.

jerrym

Another group that is not covered by CERB are students. Whether graduating from high school, working to pay postsecondary tution in order to return to school or graduating into the job market, they are unlikely to have much success in finding work when competing against the deluge of more experienced workers.

While Trudeau has made a vague promise to help them out, I suspect whatever the program is, it will sound better in the announcement than when the details come out showing it to be full of holes for people to drop through, just like CERB. This will likely expand those not covered by CERB well beyond the one third identified by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA). 

These students will then face the alternative of dropping out of school because they can't afford to go or taking more debt, assuming they can get a loan at exorbitant rates.

Sean in Ottawa

jerrym wrote:

Another group that is not covered by CERB are students. Whether graduating from high school, working to pay postsecondary tution in order to return to school or graduating into the job market, they are unlikely to have much success in finding work when competing against the deluge of more experienced workers.

While Trudeau has made a vague promise to help them out, I suspect whatever the program is, it will sound better in the announcement than when the details come out showing it to be full of holes for people to drop through, just like CERB. This will likely expand those not covered by CERB well beyond the one third identified by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA). 

These students will then face the alternative of dropping out of school because they can't afford to go or taking more debt, assuming they can get a loan at exorbitant rates.

Also international students. They pay max in our universities and are stuck here. Cannot be left to starve either.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Organizing under lockdown: online activism, local solidarity

The coronavirus pandemic is confronting us with unprecedented contradictions. The foundations of neoliberal capitalism are crumbling before our eyes, as governments in the EU are taking control over their economies in ways that would have been unthinkable just a few weeks ago. Restrictions on public spending have been lifted, private hospitals are being nationalized, wages are being temporarily covered by the state and universal basic income schemes are being drafted. At the same time, states are also implementing draconian emergency measures to restrict and monitor our mobility, which we cannot rightly oppose out of fear of spreading the virus.

This leaves the left in the predicament of having a unique opportunity to force a rapid transformation of our capitalist system yet lacking any way to do so through collective mobilization. Many of us have been left disoriented by this situation, not least because we have to reorganize our everyday lives on top of figuring out how to stay politically engaged. Across Europe, activists are already hard at work to find ways of organizing collective action even under conditions of lockdown.

NO SPACE TO MANEUVER?

Countries across Europe have implemented measures banning gatherings of more than a handful of people and many have mandated outright curfews that restrict any movement besides commuting to work and buying groceries. Most countries have also closed their borders — including the EU itself — halting international travel and migration completely. Certainly, many of these restrictions are necessary to prevent the further spread of COVID-19. However, they also carry the severe danger of permanently restraining our rights and curtailing our ability to mobilize political opposition.

quote:

FROM PROTESTS TO PODCASTS

Physical meetings and actions are largely out of the question at the moment. Some countries still permit demonstrations but these are quickly shut down if people do not keep a minimum distance from each other. Activists have therefore switched to digital communication and begun organizing political events online.

The climate movement Fridays for Future has shifted its weekly climate strikes online as well, sending millions of pictures and political demands across social media platforms. Activist from the movement have also started hosting the online show Talks for Future, where they engage in discussions with academic experts. Indeed, a whole congregation of activist groups and critical think tanks have taken this opportunity to start hosting their own podcasts and livestreaming political debates. On a more day-to-day basis, community organizers across Europe have shifted their consultation services to phone conversations and email.

Housing movements originally planned to coordinate public actions across Europe for an international Housing Action Day on March 28. Instead of just canceling the event, they proceeded to protest from their individual balconies and windows, making noise and putting up banners. A day later German activists protested against the EU’s treatment of refugees by simulating an entire demonstration online, advising people to flood the social media feeds of various public institutions that they “passed” along their “route.”

quote:

SOLIDARITY AND THE COMMONS

Not all forms of activism can be done online, however. The current crisis highlights the urgent need for local mutual solidarity, not only to protect the most vulnerable communities but also to lay the foundation for the commons-based socioeconomic alternative that we so desperately need.

Local solidarity networks have provided mutual aid during humanitarian crises in the past and many continue to do so now. In Greece, activists have built a huge network of solidarity initiatives due to years of austerity and many of them are now organizing the distribution of food and other supplies to precarious communities under curfew conditions by sending individual volunteers to shop for whole neighborhoods. This practice can be easily adopted anywhere else in Europe and could alleviate the strain on those who are less financially secure or mobile to sustain themselves. Solidarity with asylum seekers is particularly urgent, especially in the context of refugee camps whose conditions are quickly deteriorating. On the Greek island of Lesbos, medical volunteers are working around the clock to provide aid and stem the spread of COVID-19 among the refugees trapped in the camp.

But vulnerable groups require urgent help also in the urban centers of northern Europe. In Berlin, activists have been occupying empty apartments and turning them into improvised squats for the homeless population, while carefully abiding by medical safety conditions. Across the continent, there is also increasing domestic violence against women who are now forced to stay at home with abusive partners. Because of this, women’s shelters continue to operate, albeit under strict sanitary conditions, and volunteers of anti-violence networks offer to hold consultations in person in case of emergencies.

These forms of solidarity work have to continue not despite, but because of the pandemic. Mutual solidarity, so long as it is provided under careful sanitary conditions, is a crucial way to support vulnerable and marginalized social groups for whom the virus and lack of mobility create existential threats. By creating local support networks, we can also continue engaging in political activism at a grassroots level, in a way that raises both the security and political consciousness of our communities.....

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

“It’s Time to Engage in as Much Class Struggle as We Can”

The United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America (UE) was the first union to endorse Bernie Sanders’ s2020 presidential campaign. At Bernie’s kickoff rally in Brooklyn in March of last year, UE Local 506 president Scott Slawson gave a rousing and militant speech, inspiring the crowd to chant, “Strike, strike, strike!”

Now the Bernie campaign is over, and the coronavirus pandemic has plunged the nation into economic crisis. Naturally, workers have sustained the greatest damage. In this moment, UE is calling on labor unions to fight harder for their own members and for the broader working class. The union itself has created online resources for nonunion workers, and has published a special issue of UE Steward dedicated to pandemic-related organizing.

UE has also joined with the Democratic Socialists of America to form the Emergency Workplace Organizing Committee, a project that connects nonunion workers facing pandemic-related workplace issues to trained volunteers who can provide logistical support, assisting them in organizing their coworkers and fighting back.

Jacobin’s Meagan Day spoke to Mark Meinster, an International Representative for UE, about the implications of the pandemic and economic crisis for the labor movement, and what it means to have socialists and labor unions working together to support new organizing......

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Plan to drop pay transparency over Covid-19 a betrayal of frontline women workers

The ETUC is urging the European Commission to reconsider plans to abandon its pledge to introduce binding measures to boost equal and fair pay because of the coronavirus outbreak.

Binding pay transparency measures to close Europe’s 15% gender pay gap were one of just five pledges that Ursula von der Leyen vowed to deliver within 100 days of becoming Commission President.

But a leaked Commission work programme revealed the long overdue action to deliver gender pay equality and fairer pay for women could be kicked into the long grass. It says:

“On pay transparency, this was highlighted in the Political Guidelines, but it should be noted that anything of substance will inevitably mean more administrative burden for companies. It is questionable whether the autumn will really be the right time for this proposal.”

The ETUC believes that this would be a betrayal of millions of women who disproportionately work in jobs that put them on the frontline of this crisis.

Eurostat data shows that 78% of all healthcare workers, including 4.1 million low-paid and highly-exposed personal carers, are women.....

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Cargill workers’ frustrations revealed in telephone town hall

Workers reveal fear, frustration, and doubt in Cargill’s ability to manage the COVID-19 outbreak at the High River meatpacking plant in a recent Telephone Town Hall.

RankandFile.ca obtained an automated transcript of a Telephone Town Hall between members of Cargill plant management, the Alberta Government, Alberta Health Services, and Cargill plant workers regarding the plant’s recent COVID-19 outbreak.

Competing Town Halls

After 38 cases were confirmed at the plant on April 12, UFCW 401 President Thomas Hesse sent a letter to Cargill demanding the plant be shut down and every worker sent home for a 14 days of paid self-isolation. UFCW 401 represents the Cargill workers in High River and thousands of other workers in Alberta’s meatpacking plants, grocery stores and other retail and services.

“Cargill wrote back to me and said, ‘You’re being unreasonable and inflammatory.’ They kind of stopped talking to us,” Hesse told RankandFile.ca.

UFCW then put a neon sign outside the Cargill plant inviting workers to participate in a telephone town hall Sunday, April 19, at 2:00 PM. Hesse said Cargill tried to get the sign taken away.

Cargill then scheduled their own telephone town hall on Saturday, April 18, 2020 at 2:30 PM – one day before the union’s. No representative from UFCW 401 was invited to participate.

UFCW 401 reported 4,000 members attended their Telephone Town Hall the following day, which included members from across Alberta, not only Cargill. The union answered questions and promoted its 24/7 support line for workers: 1-888-464-6466 .

UFCW members also participated in survey polls. According to the union, 82% of townhall participants were not aware of their legal rights during COVID-19 before the call. A majority, 86%, also felt they were not getting adequate pay for the risks they took coming to work, and 56% said they did not feel their employers were doing everything they could to protect them. And 99% felt the union should continue to fight for financial and safety supports for workers from the government.

On Monday, April 20, Cargill announced it would shut down the plant temporarily after a worker died and 484 confirmed cases were linked to the plant and the extended community.

Transcript: government and company officials speak first

Cargill’s April 18 town hall began with speakers from government, Cargill and Alberta Health Services and was followed by a Q&A with workers. The transcript was automated meaning some words and phrases are missing or distorted. Quotes are presented as they are read in the transcript, with only minor edits for clarity. You can read the full transcript here.

Speakers at Cargill’s April 18 Telephone Town Hall:
Devin Dreeshen, Minister of Agriculture and Forestry
Dr. Jason Copping, Minister of Labour and Immigration
Andre Tremblay, Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Forestry
John Nash, Cargill’s North American Lead
Andrea [last name not provided], Cargill 
Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Chief Medical Officer, Alberta 
Dr. Brent Friesen, Alberta Health Services
Dr. Hiu, Alberta Health Services

Minister Dreeshen opens saying the purpose of the town hall is to provide information about what is being done to manage the COVID-19 pandemic within the Cargill, plant and high river and allow workers to ask questions about working conditions.....

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

SIGN NOW: Banks — Cut credit card interest during COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced people across the country to rely on credit cards to pay for basic essentials — like our food, medication and phone bills.

It’s a recipe for disaster. But there’s a way we could use our credit cards to pay for essentials without getting into bucketloads of debt.

The Bank of Canada slashed lending rates — and it’s cheaper than ever for the banks to lend money to their customers. There’s only one problem: the banks aren’t passing these savings on — they’re pocketing the profits instead. [1]

A massive, public petition, seen by all their customers and shareholders, and calling out the banks for profiting during a pandemic could convince them to reduce interest during COVID-19. But people are racking up debt every single day, so we need to act fast. Add your name now.

kropotkin1951

Fortunately before this crisis I knew there had to be some difference between banks and credit unions. My credit union is offering its clients relief.

Eligibility

To be eligible:

  • You must be an existing cardholder as of April 7th, 2020
  • Your Visa account must be in good standing
  • You have experienced job loss or loss of income, and/or have been negatively impacted in another way by COVID-19

Learn the full details about the program

 https://www.vancity.com/CreditCards/COVID-19/?xcid=hp_banner_covid_visa_...

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Spanish mayors call for investment in public services in coronavirus' aftermath

The mayors of Spain’s seven largest cities have called on central and regional governments to put social justice and improved investment in public services at the heart of the country’s post-coronavirus recovery plan, saying the crisis has shown the need to “shield the most vulnerable”.

In a joint declaration issued following a meeting earlier this week, the mayors of Madrid, Barcelona, Seville, Valencia, Zaragoza, Málaga and Murcia say they must be included in plans to tackle the virus and its socio-economic aftershocks.

“We are in the front line of the pandemic and are taking an active part in the fight against the virus and its consequences,” they said in a communique. “That is why we need collaboration and to participate actively in the decision-making about the distribution of resources.”

Between them, the cities represent eight million inhabitants, half the country’s universities and a quarter of its businesses.....

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Ecosocialists Demand Immediate Increase in Minimum Wage for Essential Workers

BC newest and fastest-growing political party today called for an immediate minimum wage increase for all workers the government has categorized as “essential.” “Right now, delivery drivers, janitorial staff, long term care home orderlies, cashiers and legions of other people holding our society together have a minimum wage of $13.85 per hour, significantly less than the minimum wage in adjacent US and Canadian jurisdictions. Our government has ruled their work essential, curtailing their ability to leave their jobs and forcing them to work in hazardous situations, interacting with dozens or hundreds of potential Covid carriers every single shift,” stated Stuart Parker, a party spokesperson.

“Back in 1995, when Adrian Dix and John Horgan were senior civil servants in the Harcourt Administration and minimum wage was $7.50 per hour, the NDP enacted what it called ‘the Fair Wage Policy,’ requiring that construction and other firms benefiting from government contracts pay their employees $22.50 per hour. We think it is only fitting that the floor wage, going forward, for any business benefiting from the ‘essential’ designation under provincial government policy be required to do the same,” Parker added...