Three new reasons for workers to celebrate

Three new reasons for workers to celebrateimage_3

Workers across Canada have three new reasons to celebrate this week; safer workplaces, stronger public pensions and more fairness for temporary foreign workers.

We just won a ban on asbestos

Canada’s unions have campaigned for decades to ban asbestos, sounding the alarm about the leading cause of work-related death in Canada. We ramped up the call this year, producing new awareness videos and taking the issue to meetings with MPs from all parties on Parliament Hill. We won the fight this week, with the federal government’s announcement yesterday that it is implementing a comprehensive ban on asbestos. That will finally put an end to the import, export and use of asbestos, and make workplaces and public spaces safer for all Canadian.


CLC President Hassan Yussuff (7th from the left) and CLC Executive Vice President Donald Lafleur (4th from the right) stand with representatives from the unions and the families whose work made the ban on asbestos possible. All were present at the government’s official announcement on December 15.

We just won stronger public pensions


Yesterday, the same day the asbestos ban was announced, the Senate passed Bill C-26, legislation that marks the first expansion of the Canada Pension Plan in its 50-year history. Canada’s union campaigned for a better CPP because we wanted to win a better future, especially for the next generation. This is an important victory. Strong public pensions are crucially important, not just to the well-being of workers and their families, but to the economic health and vitality of our cities and communities. We will continue to press the government for improvements to ensure that the expansion does not discriminate against groups of workers like those on maternity or disability leave.

We just won more fairness for Temporary Foreign Workers


On Tuesday, the federal government announced that it would scrap the “four-in, four-out” rule, which limited how long temporary foreign workers could stay in Canada. Canada’s unions had long argues that eliminating of this rule would be a first step to creating a path to permanent residency. Good enough to work here? Good enough to live here!

These wins are important for all of us

These victories are the culmination of the incredible work of the workers who together make up Canada’s labour movement. Our thanks to the labour councils, federations, unions, and grassroots activists who have worked together to make this country a more safe, compassionate and just place for all. They are a testament to the incredible power of a united movement with a clear focus, strategic objective and a broad based campaign.


The Canadian Labour Congress
Le Congrès du travail du Canada
2841, promenade Riverside Drive,
Ottawa (Ontario)  K1V 8X7