On October 10th, Ontario voters have the chance to make history. The referendum on electoral reform could bring an end to
the “first-past-the-post” system that gives unwarranted majorities to political parties without the support of the majority of voters.
The Citizens' Assembly on Electoral Reform has recommended that Ontario should change its voting system to a mixed member proportional (MMP)
voting system similar to those used in New Zealand, Germany, Scotland and Wales. You can watch a great short video by diverse members of the
Citizens Assembly explaining their work by going to www.voteforMMP.ca or www.citizensassembly.gov.on.ca
This system combines strong local representation while ensuring that parties win seats in proportion to their overall voter support.
Ontario would have 90 ridings plus the legislature would have another 39 at-large seats which would be filled from a list depending on the
portion of votes their party received. The Assembly picked this system because it gives voters more choice, fair results and true majority rule,
and has tended to produce legislatures with more women and diverse representation.
This is a crucial issue for working people. Given that few voters are even aware that this referendum will happen in October,
we have a huge task ahead to educate and mobilize both union members and the public. For material or information, contact
Judy Persad at 416-441-3663 X224 or the VoteforMMP office at 416-644-1034
In March 2005, Paul Martin, George W. Bush and Vicente Fox met in Waco, Texas to ratify the Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America (SPP). The
next meeting is scheduled for August 20-21, 2007 in Montebello, Québec. WikiPedia entry about the SPP.
"Quite clearly, the phase that we're in right now is a phase of both Mexico and Canada growing with the U.S. under this phase of neoliberalism.
And, different than the other phases this has not just been about the international circulation of capital that is Canadian investments
going into Mexico, or U.S. investments going into Mexico and vice-versa. Much more this has also been about a phase of linking of state structures
through the projects of integration - through the means of integration. This is a critical difference historically from the way that
Canada and Mexico have linked with the U.S."
The SPP "is not a signed treaty. NAFTA was a signed treaty. CAFTA was a signed treaty. It is not. It's not been debated in legislative
institutions. But it's a process that's driven by the top parts of the state apparatus in all three countries. Along with the direct participation
as well as the collusion of the leaders of the largest corporations."
"Neoliberalism is more and more discredited as an ideology, among the people, popularly, but at the same time it's still gaining terrain.
In particular, you see in order to gain that terrain it's also having to harden - or become more authoritarian. You really see in this case
where - much like the war, displacing parliament, strengthening the executive. It's remarkable ... that in a sense the state has given to the
Council of Chief Executives state responsibility."
On Tuesday, May 22nd 2007, Labour Council and
community allies launched the next phase of the $10 Minimum Wage campaign – the fight for RESPECT! It encompasses
six key issues that were raised time after time in the town hall meetings with low wage workers across Toronto.
Events in the campaign:
Jane-Finch, May 29th at 7:30pm, Driftwood Comm. Centre, Driftwood/Jane - POSTPONED
Thorncliffe, June 11th at 6:30pm, East York Town Centre, 45 Overlea Blvd # 108
Rexdale, June 18th at 7:00pm, Microskills, 1 Vulcan Drive
Scarborough, June 23rd at 2:00pm, Location TBC – The campaign for RESPECT will be supporting this community meeting being planned by the Workers' Action Centre
Weston-Mt Dennis, June 25th at 7:00 pm, Location TBC
Palestinian trade unions recently issued an
urgent call for international solidarity calling for a boycott of Israeli apartheid and
the racist Histadrut. Labour for Palestine, a group of cross-union rank and file activists active in the
Coalition Againt Israeli Apartheid,
has just produced an exciting new volume on the nature of the BDS campaign within the labour movement. On March 25th, the new book Labour For Palestine: A Reader for Unionists and Activists was launched at the Steelworkers Hall in Toronto. To obtain a copy of
this invaluable resource for your union, local, workers' resource center, campus, congregation or community center contact Labour
for Palestine at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the Toronto Women's Bookstore.
November 6, 2006: YouTube Video: Oaxaca - A Victory in The Streets.
This video is of the events in Oaxaca on Nov.2 in front of the university of Oaxaca when the federal police tried to break in and destroy the radio station, the people's main communication tool to each other, and to the outside world. The whole town came out to defend and fight back and they won a great victory.