·  by Stephen Hunt   ·  STATEMENT

This Labour Day, let’s stand up to protect Canadian jobs

Every Labour Day we come together with our union family to recognize our labour history, our struggles and the victories we have achieved.

As we move out of the pandemic, workers need to be at the forefront of rebuilding our economy. We cannot hide the fact that the pandemic has been hard on a lot of us. Hundreds of thousands of people lost their jobs, they aren’t able to find new work, or they are afraid they could lose the job they have.

It’s our job as a union to be focused on fighting for our members – fighting to keep them safe and secure in their jobs.

In the months ahead as governments find ways to jumpstart local economies, we need to make sure that everyone will benefit. As new infrastructure projects are announced, we must continue to push for a “Buy Canadian” strategy, which would give Canadian materials priority in construction projects when building new roads, bridges, overpasses, water projects, gas lines, schools, hospitals, long-term care homes for seniors, addiction treatment centres, tourism infrastructure and agriculture and natural-resources projects.

I find it deeply concerning when you have Calgary’s Tenaris Prudential steel plant in the final stages of closing while the same pipe they make is being imported from Mexico and the United States. Whether it’s pipe, rebar, wood or other products, we need to ensure that Canadian workers are kept working instead of importing these products.

It’s also concerning to see workers struggle as companies lay off employees, governments cut back badly needed supports and big corporations and their ultra-rich CEOs and shareholders continue to profit from the pandemic. It makes you wonder, who is standing up to protect our jobs?

As we celebrate Labour Day, let’s take a moment to think about who we want standing up for workers.

Governments have the power to make changes to protect the working lives of all Canadians. That is why we need a Prime Minister who fights for us and works to make life better. Remember that as you head to the ballot box in this federal election.

I encourage all Steelworkers to get out and vote. Advance polling days are taking place Friday, Sept. 10 through Monday, Sept. 13, and election day is on Monday, Sept. 20. You can also vote by mail by applying before Tuesday, Sept. 14 at 6:00 p.m. Find out where to vote at elections.ca.

Have a safe and enjoyable Labour Day.

In solidarity,

Steve Hunt
District 3 Director

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