Remembrance Day November 11 2019


Remembrance Day commemorates the sacrifices of people in all armed conflicts.

Why Remember?

Canadians departing for active service in Europe during the Second World War, 1940.
(Library and Archives Canada C-38723)

We must remember. If we do not, the sacrifice of those one hundred thousand Canadian lives will be meaningless. They died for us, for their homes and families and friends, for a collection of traditions they cherished and a future they believed in; they died for Canada. The meaning of their sacrifice rests with our collective national consciousness; our future is their monument.1

A Canadian soldier kneels at grave of fallen comrade in the United Nations Cemetery, Korea, April 1951. (Library and Archives Canada PA 128813)

These wars touched the lives of Canadians of all ages, all races, all social classes. Fathers, sons, daughters, sweethearts: they were killed in action, they were wounded, and thousands who returned were forced to live the rest of their lives with the physical and mental scars of war. The people who stayed in Canada also served—in factories, in voluntary service organizations, wherever they were needed.

Yet for many of us, war is a phenomenon seen through the lens of a television camera or a journalist’s account of fighting in distant parts of the world. Our closest physical and emotional experience may be the discovery of wartime memorabilia in a family attic. But even items such as photographs, uniform badges, medals, and diaries can seem vague and unconnected to the life of their owner. For those of us born during peacetime, all wars seem far removed from our daily lives.

Funeral service for Canadians at Bramshott during the First World War.
(Library and Archives Canada PA 4850)

We often take for granted our Canadian values and institutions, our freedom to participate in cultural and political events, and our right to live under a government of our choice. The Canadians who went off to war in distant lands went in the belief that the values and beliefs enjoyed by Canadians were being threatened. They truly believed that “Without freedom there can be no ensuring peace and without peace no enduring freedom.”2

By remembering their service and their sacrifice, we recognize the tradition of freedom these men and women fought to preserve. They believed that their actions in the present would make a significant difference for the future, but it is up to us to ensure that their dream of peace is realized. On Remembrance Day, we acknowledge the courage and sacrifice of those who served their country and acknowledge our responsibility to work for the peace they fought hard to achieve.

During times of war, individual acts of heroism occur frequently; only a few are ever recorded and receive official recognition. By remembering all who have served, we recognize their willingly-endured hardships and fears, taken upon themselves so that we could live in peace.

Telecom companies moving to block spoofed calls

Canada’s telecom companies are rolling out new call-blocking technologies they say could reduce the number of phone calls Canadians get from scam artists.

The move comes in response to a directive from the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC), which gave them until December 19 to take action to reduce the number of nuisance calls getting through to Canadians.

Bell Canada and Rogers have been working on the problem and say they expect to meet the deadline set by the CRTC.

“We’re testing the new universal network-level call blocking technology on our network and will be ready for full implementation by the CRTC’s deadline,” said Nathan Gibson, spokesman for Bell Canada. “We’ve also applied to the CRTC to conduct a 90-day trial of new call blocking technologies we’re developing to further protect customers from fraudulent and scam calls.”…….

Read the Article here…..

Unifor to sponsor Special Olympics 2020 Canada Winter Games

November 5, 2019 – 12:00 PM

Unifor, Canada’s largest union in the private sector, will be platinum sponsors of the Special Olympic 2020 Canada Winter Games, in support of the incredible contribution the athletes bring to their communities and their sports.

“Unifor is honoured to support the Special Olympic 2020 Canada Winter Games,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President. “Our union believes in championing inclusivity, removing barriers to participation, and in the transformative power of sport to bring people together. Our sponsorship will help celebrate the achievements of Special Olympians and the work being done by Special Olympics Canada.”

The National Games are held every two years, alternating between Summer and Winter. This year, the Special Olympics Canada Winter Games will be held in Thunder Bay from February 25 to 29, 2020. The games will welcome more than 1,200 athletes, coaches and mission staff from across Canada.

“It is exciting to be involved with the Special Olympic Canada Winter Games,” said Lana Payne, Unifor National Secretary-Treasurer. “Unifor supports the values that guide Special Olympics Canada and that bring each athlete to these games and to the world stage: empowerment, excellence, respect, diversity and inclusion.”

Unifor is encouraging locals and members to support the Draft an Athlete program. The program allows supporters of the movement to fund a Special Olympics athlete’s journey to a regional, provincial, national or world competition.

The cost of sending athletes to competitions is high. Through the Draft an Athlete program, more athletes are able to attend a competition through direct support.

Athletes qualify for National Games based on their results from Provincial Games. These National Games are the qualifying event for athletes to become members of Team Canada attending the Special Olympics World Winter Games.

The Games will include competition in eight official Special Olympics sports: alpine skiing, five-pin bowling, cross country skiing, curling, figure skating, floor hockey, speed skating and snowshoeing.

Unifor growing in hospitality sector

November 5, 2019 – 12:30 PM


Unifor continues to grow in the hospitality sector, with more than 150 workers at two hotels in the Toronto area voting to join the union in just two days.

“These workers have stood up and said they want a voice in their workplace, and that they believe Unifor is the best way to get that voice,” Unifor National President Jerry Dias said. “The momentum is clearly with Unifor in the hospitality sector.”

The 111 workers at the Broadview Hotel, a boutique hotel in east Toronto, voted to join Unifor on October 30. The new members include servers, bartenders, kitchen staff, front desk and housekeeping staff.

The next day, 40 workers at the Hilton Garden hotel in Mississauga, including kitchen, maintenance, laundry, banquet, server, bartender and housekeeping staff, also voted to join Unifor.

“Hospitality workers are joining Unifor because they know we have the depth in the industry to address their top concerns, including job security and compensation,” said a Unifor Organizing Director Kellie Scanlan.

Unifor represents more than 10,000 workers in hospitality and gaming across Canada.

5,000 Unifor transit workers on strike in Metro Vancouver

November 5, 2019 – 3:00 PM


Members at Unifor Locals 111 and 2200 began job action on November 1 after the employer balked at improvements to working conditions, benefits, and wages.

“There has not been a serious offer from the company since we served strike notice,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President. “In other words, the company feels very comfortable with system-wide job action.”

Unifor represents 3,800 transit operators and nearly 1,000 skilled trades and maintenance staff at Coast Mountain Bus Company, the firm contracted by the regional transit authority, Translink. The first phase of job action included a uniform ban for operators and an overtime ban for maintenance workers.

Contract talks have been underway for months, but no attempt has been made by the employer to address the most core concerns of Unifor members. Unifor says that the system is under stress, and Unifor members are bearing the brunt of it with assaults on the rise and schedules planned too tight for bathroom breaks.

“Metro Vancouver is undergoing a historic transit expansion, but it can’t leave workers behind,” said Gavin McGarrigle, Unifor Western Regional Director. “It’s not a world-class transit system if operators are treated like second-class citizens.”

McGarrigle says that, without progress on core issues, nearly 5,000 members will escalate job action in the coming weeks.

There are no further talks scheduled