Category: Labour

  • The CAW and Panic Bargaining: Early Opening at the Big Three

    In the face of a deteriorating economic climate and concerns about the ‘investment competitiveness’ of Canadian plants, the CAW leadership made a startling move this spring. It had an air of panic about it: the leadership quietly asked the Big Three – GM, Ford and Chrysler – to open their collective agreements early, offering a … Keep reading »

  • What Emergency? An Assessment of Toronto’s 2008 Transit Strike

    Last weekend’s two-day transit strike in Toronto raises anew and in starker terms two issues of longstanding concern to the labour movement in this city and throughout the province. First, the unprecedented rapidity with which the city sought back-to-work legislation, and the similarly expeditious and unanimous passage of this legislation by all parties of the … Keep reading »

  • Justice for Migrant Workers: Why We Will March

    Global migration has been increasing rapidly over the last decades within and between states. A disquieting aspect of this has been the growth of migrant workers who are non-citizens and thus lack ‘status’. Many of these workers are coming as part of formal government programs, especially in areas of domestic workers and seasonal agricultural workers, … Keep reading »

  • Socialist Project Labour Movement Platform

    As workers, we are today confronted with the challenge of defending what we have and making gains in the face of an ever-expanding and relentless employer offensive. The employers’ drive to increase productivity and profits – central to capitalism everywhere – demands that we accept job loss and insecurity, concessions, new forms of speedup, and … Keep reading »

  • Statement and Call for the Elimination of Two-Tier Workplaces

    On Saturday, January 26, 2008, over 80 U.S. and Canadian auto industry worker/activists met in Flint, Michigan, birthplace of militant unionism in the Auto Industry in the late 1930s. The agenda was how to measure and respond to the crippling impact of the 2007 auto industry collective bargaining agreements. The daylong discussions led to the … Keep reading »

  • Two-tier Wages, Second-Class Workers

    When Autoworker President Buzz Hargrove makes new pronouncements, they carry weight within and beyond the labour movement – even when, as has recently been the case, they seem to undermine what Canadian unions have always stood for. What then are we to make of Hargrove’s defiant declaration, in response to the permanent two-tier system negotiated … Keep reading »

  • Canadian Workers in Support of Bolivia and Morales

    In recent months, the process of democratic renewal and indigenous liberation in Bolivia, headed by president Evo Morales, has come under violent assault from rightist forces aligned with the U.S. government. Physical disruption of Bolivia’s Constituent Assembly prevented it from meeting for several months. Now that the Assembly has presented its proposed new constitution for … Keep reading »

  • Ottawa hotel workers exercise their right to strike – and win

    Workers fought hard over many decades to win legal recognition of the right to strike. Most unionized workers now have this right, and most trade unions work hard to defend and occasionally exercise it. It is, of course, terribly disheartening to feel a renewed need to state the above obvious point, but in the wake … Keep reading »

  • The UAW-Big Three Settlements: From Defeat to Rebellion

    The 2007 United Autoworkers (UAW) agreements with the Detroit Big Three represented – as many people inside and outside the union have noted – the greatest economic concessions in the history of the union. Yet, in the course of that defeat, a remarkable opposition arose. It was led by a small group of activists who … Keep reading »

  • First FFA Collective Agreement Restricts Workers Democratic rights

    On November 5, 2007 the CAW and Magna International signed their first Collective Agreement under the terms of the Framework of Fairness Agreement (FFA). Most of the anti-democratic features of the FFA have been incorporated into the collective agreement which was ratified overwhelmingly by the workers at Magna’s Windsor Modules plant with one important exception … Keep reading »

  • Windsor Modules: The CAW-Magna Deal Delivers – Or Does it?

    On November 7, 2007, the CAW made an historic announcement. The first collective agreement under the new CAW-Magna Framework of Fairness Agreement (FFA) was ratified at Windsor Modules, a plant of some 250 workers. The union published details of the agreement itself, but provided little information about the process. As we learn more about that … Keep reading »


    Defenders of the agreement between the CAW and Magna’s Frank Stronach argue that the union set a precedent with the 1989 agreement between the union and CAMI, in Ingersoll, Ontario. The following article challenges that claim. It is written by Herman Rosenfeld, a retired national staff representative from the CAW and a member of the … Keep reading »