Workers and the fallout from covid-19

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epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

U.S. Economy Sheds Another 2.1 Million Jobs, Leaving 40.7 Million Unemployed Since Start of Pandemic

The U.S. Labor Department reported another 2.1 million workers filed for unemployment benefits over the last week, bringing the toll of job losses since coronavirus lockdowns began in mid-March to a staggering 40.7 million. One in four U.S. workers has lost their job in just 10 weeks. The Institute for Policy Studies reports that during the same period the combined wealth of U.S. billionaires soared by $485 billion.

bekayne

NDPP wrote:

White House adviser Kevin Hassett: 'Our human capital stock is ready to go back to work.' (and vid)

https://twitter.com/atrupar/status/1264996588834996226

How capitalists/politicians really view workers.

Human capital stock...it's people!

Bacchus

In a Charlton Heston voice?

bekayne

Bacchus wrote:

In a Charlton Heston voice?

Yes

NDPP

Unemployment, Systemic Failure & the Future of Capitalism in the Age of COVID (podcast)

https://store.counterpunch.org/richard-wolff-episode-153/

Episode 153 - Richard Wolff: "Capitalism as a system is no longer working for a majority of people."

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

New Jobs Figures Show 42.6 Million U.S. Workers Filed for Unemployment During Pandemic

The U.S. Labor Department has just released its latest unemployment numbers: 1.9 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week; 42.6 million U.S. workers have filed claims since the start of the pandemic. Meanwhile, a study by Bloomberg News finds the U.S. Treasury has failed to pay out a staggering $67 billion in unemployment benefits during the pandemic — about one-third of all the money owed to jobless Americans.

NDPP

Exploitation, Abuse, Health Hazards Rise For Migrant Workers During COVID-19...

https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/migrant-workers-farm-deaths-report-1.56...

"Farm workers complain of unsafe working conditions, demand federal action in wake of deaths to coronavirus...."

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

U.S. schools lay off hundreds of thousands, setting up lasting harm to kids

quote:

Macias will join the staggering number of public school personnel across the United States who have lost their jobs in the wake of school closures amid the Covid-19 pandemic. In April alone, 469,000 public school district personnel nationally lost their jobs, including kindergarten through twelfth-grade teachers and other school employees, a Labor Department economist told Reuters.

That is more than the nearly 300,000 total during the entire 2008 Great Recession, according to a 2014 paper by three university economists financed by the Russell Sage Foundation. The number of public school teachers hasn’t recovered from that shakeout, reaching near-2008 levels only in 2019.

Multiple school district administrators, public officials and teaching experts have warned that the current school personnel job loss will last for years, hurting the education of a generation of American students. It also could be a drag on economic recovery, for one thing because school districts are big employers.

The Labor Department reported on May 8 that 20.5 million non-farm workers lost jobs in April, including 980,000 government workers. Of those, 801,000 were local government employees. Although the Labor Department report does not break out the number, 469,000 of the 801,000 local government workers were K-12 public school teachers and other school personnel, the department economist told Reuters.

BIG BLOW TO POOR AREAS

School districts in poor areas face the most punishing blows. A Brookings Institution paper in April predicted that education layoffs “would come at the worst possible time for high-poverty schools, as even more students fall into poverty and need more from schools as their parents and guardians lose their own jobs.”

Low-income districts are particularly troubled because of plunging revenue amid the Covid-19 recession. Districts rely for revenue on local property taxes and state subsidies. Poorer districts, where property tax revenue is low, rely on states for most of their income. With states hit hard by falling income and sales taxes, aid to school districts is dwindling in many places.

The job losses at public K-12 schools are bigger and coming faster than experts anticipated. Michael Griffith, a senior researcher at the Learning Policy Institute, says “we’re looking at record cuts in teaching positions.”.....

NDPP

"Grocery chains Loblaws and Metro, as well as Walmart, have decided to stop giving their workers an extra $2 an hour pay bump they put in place in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic."

https://twitter.com/CBCNews/status/1271487730191654913

Despite the price gouging and astronomical profits made by these companies too. And it's still 'early days' of the COVID-19 pandemic. Once more we learn that business, indeed, is business. Take yours elsewhere.

NDPP

Workers' Anger Grows As Auto Companies Continue Coverup of COVID-19 in the Factories

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2020/06/15/auto-j15.html

The major US automakers are continuing their policy of covering up the spread of coronavirus in auto plants as reports filter out of new cases in several factories. The attempt to hide the extent of COVID-19 is a transparent effort to keep production going in the face of mounting workers' anger over the danger to themselves and family members amidst a nationwide resurgence of the virus due to the ending of all lockdown measures. General Motors and Ford have made it an official policy not to report the number and locations of confirmed COVID-19 cases at their factories. Fiat-Chrysler have also apparently stopped reporting coronavirus cases as well..."

NDPP

Prof Richard Wolff on Capitalism and Social Unrest

https://youtu.be/QoNNNxa_r0U

"This is a [US] class war."

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Liberals looking to extend COVID-19 help ahead of parliamentary showdown

The Liberals are putting together a plan to extend one of the key COVID-19 benefits ahead of a parliamentary showdown on Wednesday.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Monday he'll detail later this week how the Canada Emergency Response Benefit might be extended as millions of Canadians have almost maxed out how much they can claim.

"In the last few weeks, things have started to look up for a lot of people but that said, we also know that far too many Canadian are still struggling," Trudeau said Monday during his daily press conference outside his home.

"If you're having troubles finding a job you shouldn't also be worrying about whether you'll hit the limit of your CERB benefits. So right now we're working on a solution to extend the benefit for people who can't return to work yet."

quote:

Demand for the CERB has surpassed expectations, pushing its budget to $60 billion from $35 billion.

quote:

"But even with the economy reopening we know there are many jobs that aren't going to be coming back in the short term and that's why we're looking at continuing to help people who are on the CERB who can't find a job."

NDPP

Justice4MigrantWkers (and vid)

https://twitter.com/j4news/status/1272971368963817472

"Here's a video that shows where 12 migrant farmworkers are crammed into an employer-provided bunkhouse separated only by flimsy cardboard. In the middle of a pandemic, governments must act NOW to prevent more Black and Latinx workers from getting sick."

NDPP

Canada's Grocery Chains Slash Wages As Pandemic Continues to Rage

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2020/06/17/groc-j17.html

"In a highly provocative and apparently coordinated move, Canada's three main grocery store chains announced last week that they were scrapping a $2 per hour COVID-19 pandemic 'premium' or bonus effective Friday, June 13. This decision will mean a significant pay cut for hundreds of thousands of workers who have performed, and continue to provide, an essential service amid the worst pandemic in a century..."

Eat the rich.

NDPP

"Ontario Premier Doug Ford called out farmers in the Windsor-Essex region for failing to get migrant workers tested as a COVID-19 outbreak there continues. 'It's just not fair what you're doing right now."

https://twitter.com/CTVNews/status/1275116914944159745

Ford-talk is cheap. As are the lives of foreign workers  to our Canadian plantation owners. (another death today)

NDPP

"Here it is plainly stated; we are prepared to accept the deaths of migrant farm workers in order to maintain the 'integrity' of the supply chain and the profits of a few...I can't process this without being overcome by shame. Where are our priorities?"

https://twitter.com/SharkawyMD/status/1275976958741024768

Once again COVID reveals the real Canada. Aside from some nominal and perfuctory virtue-signalling perhaps, few will notice or care. Let alone act.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

begin drift....

Repair & Revive: Rev. William Barber on Fighting Racism, Poverty, Climate Change, War & Nationalism

quote:

REV. WILLIAM BARBER II: In recent weeks, we’ve heard the media ask, “When will the protests stop?” Since we’ve launched this campaign, people have asked, “What one demand is your top priority?” Well, we say, when you decided to do COVID response, you gave $2.5 trillion, nearly $3 trillion, to the banks and the corporations. If they can have 3 trillion things, don’t ask us what is our one thing.

quote:

And what happened on Saturday, we had planned to be in D.C. on Pennsylvania Avenue, but because of COVID-19, we couldn’t. But our people said, “We have to still do this.” And so we did. And when you heard me, for instance, speaking there, that was after 50 people, at least 50 people, impacted people from across this country, poor and low-wealth, had told their stories and made their demands. More than 2.5 million people turned out for the Mass Poor People’s Assembly, Moral March on Washington, a digital affair — 2.5 million just on Facebook. Now, that doesn’t include what happened on other networks and CNN — I mean, excuse me, C-SPAN and radios across this land.

What it was, was people, poor and low-wealth people, counterintuitively — coal miners from Kentucky, with poor folk from Alabama, white women from West Virginia standing with Black women from Mississippi, and so forth and so on, farmers from Kansas standing with fast-food workers from North Carolina — saying that there are five issues that we have to address: systemic racism in all of its form, Black people — how it affects Black people, Brown people, First Nation people; systemic poverty; ecological devastation, the war economy; and the false moral narrative of religious nationalism. And we must do it out of our deepest moral traditions, constitutionally, religiously. We must do it with deep love, but also with deep truth.

And they decided, “We want to tell our story. We want to show America herself. We want to put a face on these issues. And then we want to put the facts around these issues. And then we want to put forward an agenda.” And so, that’s what we did on Saturday, and it was overwhelmingly, beyond our expectations, received.

One of the things our agenda says to people is, “Do you realize that when voter suppression is put in place, that it suppresses the vote, targets the Black vote, but what it does, it also allows people to get elected who then block healthcare and block living wages?” And that hurts all of us, regardless of your race, your creed, your color.

Our agenda also says, “Do you realize, if we took 1 million — if we took one military contract, we could fund every state that has refused to accept the Affordable Care Act, the insurance there?” Just one military contract could give preschool to all the children we need. If we just took the money that we spent since 9/11, we could have had a green grid for our country to deal with new kinds of energy. Do you realize that if we spent $15 — we raised the living wage to $15, 40 million people could come out of poverty and low wealth? If we had a housing wage, 83 million people could come out of poverty and low wealth.

That’s the focus of this agenda, to say the choices we are making are bad choices. That’s why we have 140 million people poor and low-wealth in this country, and 62 million people who work every day without a living wage, and 80 million people without insurance or underinsured. And it doesn’t have to be this way.

quote:

And one of the things we pointed out on Saturday is that every regressive policy has what I call a DM on the DL — that is, a death measurement on the down low. When we talk about, for instance, the death of George Floyd, which we have to, and police violence, but police violence is only one part of racism that kills and classism that kills. For every 500,000 people that are denied healthcare, 2,800 people die. Seven hundred people die every day from poverty, even before COVID. And we know we’re headed toward poverty going probably plus-50% in this economic downturn. Every regressive policy has a death measurement on the down low. And we’ve got to bring those things out. We even have to show people that racist voter suppression has a death measurement, because when people are allowed to get elected through racist voter suppression, and then, once they get elected, they block healthcare, they block living wages, they block reparations, they in fact are blocking policies that could cause people to live. And in blocking them, people die.

The first declaration this country made — we’ve never lived up to it fully — is the declaration to life — life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Life. In far too much of our regressive policies, we have never dealt with the issue of life, because we’ve never dealt with how so many policies create death. Racism has always had death in it. Classism has death in it. And so, yes, we have to repair and revive. That has to be a part of if we’re truly going to ever be the democracy we claim to be on paper.

....end drift

Aristotleded24

NDPP wrote:
Workers' Anger Grows As Auto Companies Continue Coverup of COVID-19 in the Factories

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2020/06/15/auto-j15.html

The major US automakers are continuing their policy of covering up the spread of coronavirus in auto plants as reports filter out of new cases in several factories. The attempt to hide the extent of COVID-19 is a transparent effort to keep production going in the face of mounting workers' anger over the danger to themselves and family members amidst a nationwide resurgence of the virus due to the ending of all lockdown measures. General Motors and Ford have made it an official policy not to report the number and locations of confirmed COVID-19 cases at their factories. Fiat-Chrysler have also apparently stopped reporting coronavirus cases as well..."

No no no, don't you see that the real problem isn't corporate malfeasance, but individuals moving about their daily lives doing what they do? That's what we need to focus on! Let's make people so scared to do anything in their personal lives that they will always be watching on eggshells, worried about every little action that has a very negligible chance of spreading the virus! That way we can keep covering up larger systemic problems, like large workplaces not protecting their staff from infectious diseases, not properly protecting our elder care homes, and not protecting migrant workers, when these systemic problems are actually responsible for driving the bulk of the covid spread!

Pondering

Aristotleded24 wrote:

NDPP wrote:
Workers' Anger Grows As Auto Companies Continue Coverup of COVID-19 in the Factories

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2020/06/15/auto-j15.html

The major US automakers are continuing their policy of covering up the spread of coronavirus in auto plants as reports filter out of new cases in several factories. The attempt to hide the extent of COVID-19 is a transparent effort to keep production going in the face of mounting workers' anger over the danger to themselves and family members amidst a nationwide resurgence of the virus due to the ending of all lockdown measures. General Motors and Ford have made it an official policy not to report the number and locations of confirmed COVID-19 cases at their factories. Fiat-Chrysler have also apparently stopped reporting coronavirus cases as well..."

No no no, don't you see that the real problem isn't corporate malfeasance, but individuals moving about their daily lives doing what they do? That's what we need to focus on! Let's make people so scared to do anything in their personal lives that they will always be watching on eggshells, worried about every little action that has a very negligible chance of spreading the virus! That way we can keep covering up larger systemic problems, like large workplaces not protecting their staff from infectious diseases, not properly protecting our elder care homes, and not protecting migrant workers, when these systemic problems are actually responsible for driving the bulk of the covid spread!

So you propose opening up even more large work places? From the beginning the message has been that they are trying to slow down the virus not stop it.  The goal has always been to keep it at a rate the hospitals can manage. Outbreaks amongst workers were expected.

Having said that it was very poorly managed. The concept of bubbles should have been introduced in the first weeks and there are multiple bubbles. Isolating and contact tracing are much easier if people stay in as small a geographic area as possible. Playgrounds and pools could have been reserved for addresses lacking in private facilities. Schools should have been opened as local day camps for the summer. Day camps could register to use the pools. I could go on.

The list of things all the levels of government did the wrong way is endless. That doesn't mean that it is safe to end social distancing or for things to go back to the way things were. There is a very good chance snowbirds will not be returning to Florida this winter.

 

Aristotleded24

Pondering wrote:

Aristotleded24 wrote:

NDPP wrote:
Workers' Anger Grows As Auto Companies Continue Coverup of COVID-19 in the Factories

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2020/06/15/auto-j15.html

The major US automakers are continuing their policy of covering up the spread of coronavirus in auto plants as reports filter out of new cases in several factories. The attempt to hide the extent of COVID-19 is a transparent effort to keep production going in the face of mounting workers' anger over the danger to themselves and family members amidst a nationwide resurgence of the virus due to the ending of all lockdown measures. General Motors and Ford have made it an official policy not to report the number and locations of confirmed COVID-19 cases at their factories. Fiat-Chrysler have also apparently stopped reporting coronavirus cases as well..."

No no no, don't you see that the real problem isn't corporate malfeasance, but individuals moving about their daily lives doing what they do? That's what we need to focus on! Let's make people so scared to do anything in their personal lives that they will always be watching on eggshells, worried about every little action that has a very negligible chance of spreading the virus! That way we can keep covering up larger systemic problems, like large workplaces not protecting their staff from infectious diseases, not properly protecting our elder care homes, and not protecting migrant workers, when these systemic problems are actually responsible for driving the bulk of the covid spread!

So you propose opening up even more large work places? From the beginning the message has been that they are trying to slow down the virus not stop it.  The goal has always been to keep it at a rate the hospitals can manage. Outbreaks amongst workers were expected.

That is a complete misunderstanding of what I have been saying on this topic. My contention is that covid oubreaks have primarily been driven by large scale systemic failures, like NDPP's post that I was responding to, and that if we really want to control these things, that is where we should focus our attention. The media isn't really paying as much attention to these things as it should.

Perhaps I can clarify things and reduce misunderstandings by saying this: I am far more scared of covid being spread through a large workplace or through nursing homes or through employers not adequately protecting migrant workers (note there is next to no media coverage about this) than I am about spread through people singing in church or through a trip to the supermarket (which the media seems to love to talk about). Please also note that the media is essentially a mouthpiece for corporate interests, and that is what will influence their coverage and slant on the pandemic.

laine lowe laine lowe's picture

It seems that the media has been pretty good at underscoring the high numbers of COVID-19 cases related to retirement/assisted living homes, meat processing plants and other similar operations, trucking businesses and more recently with the opening of the season, migrant farm workers. When I do my 1X a week grocery run, it's like a 50-50 split of people wearing masks but everyone is pretty good at respecting the distancing measures and hand sanitizer recommendations. I only went to one restaurant since easing started and that was well handled. I appreciate that people are taking this seriously and being for the most part considerate about helping control the spread of COVID-19. I am impressed that my partner took the step to do some limited social distancing and getting tested because he attended a couple of working and social events cross provincial borders.

Aristotleded24

Here we go again:

Quote:

The federal government has conducted mostly remote inspections of Ontario farms that employ migrant workers during the COVID-19 pandemic, instead of physically entering the properties to make sure the labourers' living conditions are safe.

Employment and Social Development Canada, the department responsible for the inspections, told CBC News that over the last four months, all the farms it inspected during the initial 14-day mandatory quarantine period complied with the rules as of June 12.

But the department admitted in most cast cases, inspectors didn't actually travel to the farms in question.

"For the safety of everyone involved, the majority of inspections are still being conducted remotely," the department said in a statement. By some accounts, the inspections are done virtually. CBC News has asked for details on how the remote monitoring is conducted, but so far, the department has not provided details.

If these farms are too dangerous to send an inspector on site for a few hours it would take to do the inspection, is it not by definition too dangerous for temporary foreign workers to spend entire days there?

NDPP

"I see CERB is trending again...and once again it's because corporate media is calling Canadians lazy scammers. CEWS and CEBA are costing twice as much but no one is calling business fraudsters. I wonder why?"

https://twitter.com/jimjameswhelan/status/1284535145983344648

And CBC has been interviewing employers crying about how CERB's monthly 2k support is 'disincentivizing' workers from returning to their COVID-dangerous, slave-wage work. Class war. The surest way to lose one is not to know you're in one. Onwards towards a society of equality based on people's needs not capitalist greed.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Workers “Strike for Black Lives” Across the Country

Tens of thousands of workers across the country walked off the job Monday as part of the “Strike for Black Lives” in support of the nationwide uprising against racism and police brutality. Workers demanded the companies they work for do more to dismantle white supremacy, economic inequality, and to address the public health emergencies facing Black and Brown communities. In Washington, D.C., demonstrators gathered on Capitol Hill to call for the passage of the HEROES Act, a coronavirus relief package approved by the Democrat-controlled House. This is McDonald’s employee Wanda Lavender, who joined the action in Wisconsin.

Wanda Lavender: “Like many Black workers who are struggling, who are stuck in low-paying jobs, I keep going to work through this pandemic. I can’t work my job from home, from the safety of my home, and I can’t afford to take time off. And a few times, I’ve been scared that I had COVID-19 myself. Even though I was feeling sick, coughing my lungs out, my job told me that I had to come in. They said, 'If you take sick leave, you don't have a job to come back to.’”

NDPP

Democrats, Republicans Prepare to Slash Workers' Unemployment Supplement

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2020/07/21/pers-j21.html

"...In the midst of a raging pandemic and the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression, with at least 30 million out of work and new jobless claims surpassing one million a week, the supplement is all that has been keeping many families above water. Coinciding with the impending end of a federal moratorium on evictions and the expiration of state moratoriums, the cut in jobless pay will propel millions into destitution and homelessness. Researchers at Columbia University say they expect US homelessness to increase by 45% compared to 2019..."

Prepare.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

A Carrot for the Bosses and the Stick for the Workers

The dominant public discourse in this society is based on the proposition that the rich need incentives, while workers and poor people must be disciplined. Income support for those outside the workforce has always been provided reluctantly and inadequately, while state handouts to employers and corporations are always lavish and provided with very few conditions. The response of the Trudeau government, in the face of the pandemic lockdown, is no exception to this longstanding approach.

Finance Minister Bill Morneau has now told us that the Canada Emergency Relief Benefit (CERB) will be ending in September. Implying that those forced to turn to this benefit have been kept in a state of pampered dependency, Yahoo Finance >reports that “Canadians must now prepare to wean themselves off the popular CERB program.” At the same time, however, employers, far from facing any “weaning” process, are to have their benefit system extended and enriched. As he announced the end of the CERB, Morneau also informed us that the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) will continue until at least December and the rules will be relaxed to ensure there is even more room at the trough. Up until now, in order to have 75 percent of its wage bill covered out of public monies, a company would have to show a 30 percent decline in revenues, but this condition will now be dropped and the change will be retroactive to July 5.

Lockdown impacts

CERB had to be hastily improvised in conditions of pandemic-induced dislocation because the established system of social benefits in Canada has been decimated by a decades-long austerity agenda. Allegations that it is a lavish or generous form of emergency provision are entirely preposterous. It has only blunted, rather than alleviated, an explosion of hardship and hunger that has developed during the pandemic lockdown and that will continue in the conditions of mass unemployment that follow it. Three million jobs were lost in Canada during March and April and a further two-and-a-half million workers had their hours of work reduced. The unemployment rate of 13.7 percent that was reported on June 5 had still only fallen to 12.3 percent as of July 10. This is hardly an indication that there is no longer a need for emergency provision measures.

Food insecure Canadians numbered 4.4 million even before the pandemic, and the months of lockdown have made that much worse. Between mid-March and the end of April food bank use across the country tripled. So many tenants have been unable to pay their rent during the lockdown period that the threat of mass evictions and an explosion of homelessness hangs over many communities. In Toronto, it is estimated that up to 260,000 people could be “delinquent” in their rent. A brief prepared by the Toronto Foundation affirms that, “Considering that the Landlord Tenant Board typically sees 4,000 eviction cases a month across the entire province, the scale of this issue compared to the typical is unprecedented.” This is the context in which the Trudeau government will be “weaning” people off the CERB, which provides $2,000 a month (with a maximum of 24 weeks of benefits), when the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Toronto is $2,300......

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Reopening Ontario Act, which extends COVID-19 emergency orders, met with Chorus of opposition

The passage of provincial legislation extending some COVID-19 emergency orders for one year and giving the government the power to amend the orders without a vote from the legislature has been met with a torrent of criticism.

Bill 195 – the Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act received Royal assent July 21 and comes into force July 24. The Act ends the state of emergency in Ontario but continues certain orders made under the province’s COVID-19 emergency legislation, for one year. The power to amend or revoke the orders rests with the Minister, not the Legislative Assembly.

The Canadian Civil Liberties Association called the Reopening Ontario Act an “undemocratic power grab,” which gives the Premier and his Ministers the ability to impose emergency orders that “drastically curtail basic rights and freedoms” without the “need to engage in the legislative process or involve members of the Legislative Assembly.”

Cara Zwibel, director of fundamental freedoms at the CCLA, told Law Times that the Act sidelines Ontarians’ democratic representatives from engaging on the emergency orders, many of which had Charter implications.

“The concern is that we have an elected assembly that is supposed to represent the province. And those individuals don't have a chance to weigh in on whether these measures should continue to be maintained, until about a year from now. Whereas under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act, the government had to go back to them every 28 days for extensions.”

The amendment power under the Act includes making the emergency order “more onerous” imposing “different requirements” and applying the order to other areas of the province, states the Act. Every 30 days, the Premier or a Minister is required to report to the public and a committee of the assembly on the orders that have been extended and the rationale for their extension. The orders can only be extended 30 days at a time.

quote:

Toronto constitutional lawyer Rocco Galati tweeted his opposition to the legislation: “It belongs in 1930s in Europe. Should have been called the return to dictatorial rule Act. It needs to, and will be, constitutionally challenged.”

The Ontario Federation of Labour said it was “outraged” by the Act, which gives employer the ability to bypass collective agreements, deny vacation and contract-out jobs.

“All workers have the right to bargain collectively with their employer under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms,” said an OFL statement.

“A legal challenge is certainly in the cards, and increased labour action is also clearly on the table… The Ford Conservatives call front-line workers heroes with one breath, then strip those same workers of their rights,” said OFL president Patty Coates.

Pondering

We need to start forming narratives like the right did.

If temporary workers are good enough to work here why can't they become citizens?

The answer is that they are used to perform jobs that Canadians won't do because the pay and conditions are so bad.

Employer's claim they can't pay more because it would make food more expensive. I don't know the numbers but I would like to fine out what percentage of the price we pay goes to the workers at the picking level. I bet it is 5% or less.

We need to start comparing ourselves to Saudi Arabia and Kuwait as countries who also import workers but don't allow them to become citizens.

Importing cheap labour cannot be the means through which we keep food affordable. If food is unaffordable in a wealthy country like Canada we need to find another means of addressing it. Everyone who participates in producing our food, is an essential worker who deserves a Canadian living wage and a route to citizenship. 

Canada has ample water so we will continue being a major world food source.

NDPP

Worlds Apart: Socialists + Globalists = ?

https://youtu.be/DDVOfGM2Puw

Prof Richard Wolff, Professor Emeritus of Economics at University of Massachusetts, Amherst. After decades of telling other nations how to live their lives, Americans suddenly woke up to the realization that their own house is not in order.

'The United States has 5% of the world's population. It has 25% of the cases of Corona and the deaths from Corona. For a country that calls itself a 'global leader', that calls itself 'very wealthy', this is a failure of staggering proportions that should never have been allowed to happen...The country is imploding and cannot contain its own contradictions."

 

'Living next to you [USA] is in some ways like sleeping with an elephant...one is affected by every twitch and grunt.' Pierre Elliot Trudeau

(Perhaps it's time to stop sleeping with the elephant and wake up!)

NDPP

Faculty, Staff Protest University of Toronto's Plan for Fall

https://www.utfa.org/content/faculty-staff-protest-university-toronto-s-...

"University of Toronto staff unions and the U of T Faculty Association (UTFA) are protesting the university's plans for in-person classes in the fall, which contrast with other Ontario institutions that have chosen to teach the semester online. The groups fear U of T's plan could compromise student, faculty and staff health and safety, and are calling for greater adoption of online education. Five U of T unions and the UTFA launched a petition called 'U of T's Reopening Plan is NOT Safe Enough. We Need To Take Fall 2020 Online..."

NDPP

A Carrot For the Bosses and the Stick For the Workers

https://twitter.com/parismarx/status/1288466944929214466

"The federal government is ending the CERB, which goes to out-of-work Canadians, in September. But it's extending the wage subsidy until December and relaxing conditions. It says a lot about who the pandemic response is really centering..."

NDPP

"Four years ago, Toronto had 483 children living in its homeless shelters. This year there were more than a thousand. Then COVID hit..."

https://twitter.com/cathycrowe/status/1292111691854028805

And in the way of such things here, few Canadians that weren't homeless paid the slightest attention.

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