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 Association of Western Pulp & Paper Workers
( Last updated Wednesday, June 28, 2017 3:22 pm EDT)
Japan's Nippon Paper to buy US beverage container operation
June 16, 2016 2:00 am JST Japan's Nippon Paper to buy US beverage container operation src=http://asia.nikkei. Wednesday, June 15, 2016 6:26 pm EDT

The U.S. International Trade Commission Report
The U.S. International Trade Commission Report Last week, the U.S. Thursday, May 26, 2016 4:42 pm EDT

More to follow
AWPPW Local 69 is getting with the times and working on a website. Standby, more to follow. Friday, May 20, 2016 6:47 pm EDT

AWPPW Local 60 member Steven Phillips will be attending President Obama?s State of the Union Address
Brothers and Sisters, on Tuesday January 12th, 2016 AWPPW Local 60 member Steven Phillips will be attending President Obama’s State of the Union Address.  Mr. Phillips is attending as a guest of Congressman Peter DeFazio.  DeFazio represents the 4th Congressional District of Oregon. Tuesday, January 12, 2016 12:28 pm EST

Workshops to be held for all Newberg Union employees at the Local 60 Union Hall
Tuesday, October 20, 2015 10:33 pm EDT

( Last updated Wednesday, June 28, 2017 3:22 pm EDT)
Media workers confront issues facing industry
More than 100 media workers and staff from across Canada gathered recently to discuss the challenges facing the industry due to the digital revolution and strategies to ensure the survival of their industry. “The members in this sector have really stepped up to fight for the future of this industry,” Unifor Media Director Howard law said. In his keynote address, St. John’s MP Seamus O’Regan, a member of the Heritage Committee, said that while Canadians say local news is important to them, few understand the crisis in the industry as digital ad dollars to flow to Google and Facebook. “We need to fund journalism in this country, we have to,” O’Regan told Media Council, held in St. John’s from June 21 to 25. “We need to find a way to get people to pay attention.” Scott Doherty, Executive Assistant to the National President, paid tribute to the council for its effective work in fighting for the future of the industry, saying the federal government’s recent Heritage Committee report contained many of the recommendations put forward by Unifor. “This council and our members have worked very hard to get the message out about the needs of the media industry,” Doherty said. Ed Greenspon, whose Shattered Mirror report in January outlined the funding crisis facing journalism today, told the council delegates that Canadians worry that the media’s watchdog role will be eroded with government support. Newly elected Media Council Chair Jake Moore from Local 79-M, said the work of the council is vital to the strength of Canada’s democracy by keeping voters informed.   “Our members tell our stories as Canadians,” Moore said. Also elected was Jennifer Moreau from Local 2000, elected as Secretary-Treasurer of the council. Returning executive members are Alex Charles (780G), representing the Graphical sector; Jonathan Ahee (700M), Freelance; Kristy Tapp (M-1), Broadcasting; Paul Morse (87M), Newspapers; and Stéphane Daigneault (145G), Québec. Tanya Luciani, chair of the Media Action Plan, reported that the communications plan has helped establish Unifor as a major voice on the issues facing the industry – both with the public and members. Delegates committed to meet with their local MPs, especially from the governing Liberals, over the summer break in anticipation of a report from the Heritage Ministry on Canadian Content in the digital age, to be released in the fall. Wednesday, June 28, 2017 3:22 pm EDT

Second environmental conference a success
More than 100 Unifor members representing a diverse array of economic sectors gathered in Port Elgin June 23–25 for the second Health, Safety, and Environment Conference. On the first night, keynote speaker Catherine Abreu of the Climate Action Network laid out a positive vision for the international campaign to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions—even after America’s withdrawal from the Paris Agreement. Although Abreu was optimistic about how many jurisdictions and subnational governments are taking up the climate action challenge, she said that Canada is not doing enough to meet its self-declared targets. She encouraged Unifor members to strengthen existing ties with her organization and other Canadian organizations in the struggle for climate justice. Discussions on the second day focused on just transitions for workers displaced by the economy’s shift away from carbon. A panel of speakers reviewed local, national, and international examples of transition strategies and examined how the labour movement can agitate for the best programs. Afterwards activists were challenged to think strategically about how to engage and educate other members, and how to build lasting allegiances in the wider community. Participants were also encouraged to think critically about what constitutes decent work after transition so that precarious or low-skill jobs are not considered the replacement for good resource jobs. On Saturday afternoon, Ontario Minister for the Environment and Climate Change Glen Murray addressed delegates about the province’s cap and trade program. Murray encouraged Unifor members everywhere to keep the pressure on governments to make climate change a top priority. Alberta’s Minister of Environment and Parks and former Unifor member Shannon Phillips addressed the conference by pre-recorded video. Minister Phillips reviewed her government’s Climate Leadership Plan, launched in fall 2016. The Plan was the result of months of public consultation and evidence review by the minister and an arms-length advisory panel that included Unifor member Angela Adams. The first of its kind after 40-year conservative rule, the climate policy caps GHG emissions from the Oilsands, ends industrial coal pollution, puts a price on carbon, and makes ambitious investments in renewable energy. On the final day of the conference, Unifor Health and Safety Representative Ken Bondy and Health, Safety and the Environment Director Sari Sairanen helped summarize the weekend’s lessons and dialogue. Sairanen emphasized Unifor’s upcoming Canada Council and the Canadian Labour Congress’ task force as opportunities to broaden the discussion and influence national priorities. She urged participants to take the weekend’s ideas back to the local level and turn words into action, from investigating union hall retrofits to the formation of regional environmental committees. “We saw a lot of passion from Unifor activists this weekend,” said Sairanen. “Our union is committed to leading the struggle to stop climate change while protecting workers and communities in transition.” Wednesday, June 28, 2017 3:22 pm EDT

Transgender Rights Protected in Canadian Law
Transgender activists celebrated as a new law protecting gender identity and expression received royal assent on June 20, 2017. The bill amended the Canadian Human Rights Act to add gender identity and expression as prohibitive grounds for discrimination and extended this protection through the Criminal Code. This means that it is illegal in Canada to discriminate against someone because of their transgender identity, or how they express their gender. This legal protection will be applied in the same way that people are currently protected because of gender, race, ability and other identities, and guarantees them full and equal protection under the law. “Bill C-16 is a major victory. After many years, the federal government has extended the same human rights protections to transgender people that other communities have had for many years,” said Mohamad Alsadi, Unifor Human Rights and International Director. “While this recognition will not immediately end the discrimination that transgender people face, it is an incredibly powerful tool to continue to push for equality.” In Canada, transgender people still face elevated levels of violence and discrimination. Unions have a responsibility to defend all members on the job. This includes transgender members and all members of the LGBTQ community. In the workplace Unifor members can also take concrete action to challenge hate and advance equality for transgender workers. For example, bargaining committees should include gender identity and gender expression as prohibitive grounds of discrimination and harassment in collective agreements. Stewards can also speak up to help make work safe and supportive for transgender workers by advocating for transition plans.  A good transition plan includes ensuring confidentiality, access to washrooms and uniforms that are consistent with their gender, appropriate medical coverage and other necessary steps.  Read the Workers in Transition guide to get started. Email pride@unifor.org to get involved in your regional LGBTQ committee. Read the full text of Bill C-16 . Wednesday, June 28, 2017 3:22 pm EDT

Unifor responds to Ontario’s announcement on enhanced emergency medical Services
On June 5, the Ontario government announced three substantial changes to the way emergency medical services will be delivered in the province. These changes include: Updating the program 911 Dispatchers use to more accurately assess, or triage, patients in their time of need. Expanding and enhancing the use of Community Paramedic Programs, or CPPs, so patients may be able to avoid a hospital altogether. A proposed pilot project where local fire departments could hire paramedics to work on a fire truck, and provide “first response” care, while waiting for an ambulance to provide transportation to hospital. Unifor believes the first two changes to emergency medical services in Ontario will prove very beneficial. Dispatch For quite some time, Unifor has called on the provincial government to update the current dispatch system.   Under the current system, virtually all 911 calls end up labeled a “high priority”, or “lights and sirens response.”  Statistically, less than five per cent of ambulance calls turn out to be life-threatening.  This mismatch between real and perceived emergencies ties up ambulance resources, leading some to conclude that Ontario has an “EMS problem.”  In reality, the problem lies with faulty dispatch software.  Upgrading to new software will give 911 dispatchers the tools they need to properly triage patients, and will result in patients getting the right care, at the right time. Community Paramedic Programs (CPP) CP Programs leverage the high skill-set of a paramedic to add efficiency to the health care system.  Paramedics can perform early hospital-discharge care, and run clinics and check-ups in house, which results in fewer non-essential visits to emergency room departments by patients.  In turn, the patients discharged early create room in the hospital for patients waiting to be admitted from ER.  This makes space for the paramedics to then drop off any new emergency patients, instead of waiting in a hallway on “off-load delay.” Unifor is concerned and disappointed with the third change proposed to emergency medical services delivery. Unifor paramedics believe there is no additional role for local fire departments to play in the delivery of emergency medical services.  Local fire departments and police officers are already equipped with defibrillators to treat patients in cardiac arrest.  Science has shown that these patients are the most likely to benefit from a rapid response.  Allowing fire department vehicles to speed to any additional calls creates a significant public safety hazard, while causing further strain on already tight municipal budgets through increased fuel, training and maintenance costs when compared to ambulances, and offers no measureable benefit to patient care. Fire departments also cannot transport patients, meaning regardless of their arrival on an emergency scene, they will be tied up waiting for underfunded ambulance units to arrive; this does not improve patient care, and actually compromises the fire department’s ability to perform fire suppression and rescue duties in the community. Staffing and running one ambulance costs approximately 1/4 as much as staffing and maintaining a fire truck.  Cities have limited resources to spend on EMS.  Any dollar spent on a duplication of services, cannot be spent on increasing real capacity to the existing ambulance services, which are facing call volume increases of six per cent annually. Unifor believes the government must work quickly to implement the first two steps of their enhanced emergency medical services plan.  The union also believes the third step will be expensive, inefficient and ineffective, and is calling on the government to remove this portion of their plan. Wednesday, June 28, 2017 3:22 pm EDT

Unifor keeps the pressure on with softwood rallies
Unifor members, employers and allies rallied in five key forestry communities across the country on June 19 to tell the federal government that a negotiated deal with the U.S. for fair trade in softwood lumber must be a top priority. The Americans levied a 20 per cent “countervailing” tariff on Canadian softwood lumber exports in May 2017 and are expected to levy an “anti-dumping” tariff this month. Experts say that Canadian lumber prices have surged 18 per cent to compensate for the duties, something that makes Canadian mills less competitive and layoffs and closures a certainty. In response to pressure from Unifor, the federal government announced a $867 million aid package on June 1 to help cushion the blow to the industry. National President Jerry Dias said the package is an important tool, but the end game must be a negotiated trade deal. “We are very encouraged at the government’s responsiveness but the job’s not done, Canada needs a fair deal,” said Dias. “The government must negotiate from a position of strength and stand up for good forestry jobs.” Unifor has a right to be concerned about the impact of U.S. duties on softwood lumber jobs. During the last softwood dispute the U.S. government levied 27 per cent in combined duties, causing  nearly 15,000 Canadian forestry jobs to be lost. The rallies were held in Saint John (Irving), Amos (Resolute), Baie-Comeau (Resolute), Jonquière (Resolute), and Thunder Bay (Resolute). With 23,000 members across 134 employers, Unifor is Canada’s forestry union and forestry accounts for over 200,000 direct jobs in 650 communities. Wednesday, June 28, 2017 3:22 pm EDT

Health care workers talk experience and activism
Unifor’s national health care conference brought together the largest group of health care workers ever, as more than 203 participants from 19 local unions in Ontario and Nova Scotia gathered at the union’s education centre in Port Elgin from June 9-11. The conference explored the need to advocate for strengthening universal public health care, creating a national pharmacare program, ending cuts to hospitals and long-term care, as well as establishing a minimum amount of hours of hands on care. Delegates also had the opportunity to root these issues in their own work experience during workshops on mental health, workplace stress and bullying; a new vision for long-term care; and violence in the workplace. Secretary-Treasurer Bob Orr, Atlantic Regional Director Lana Payne Assistant to the President Katha Fortier, and Health Care Director Andy Savela, in addition to a number of thought-provoking guest speakers, spoke to members over the two days.  “Unions know that losing medicare would be devastating for working people,” said Sean Meagher, Executive Director of Canadian Doctors for Medicare, who spoke extensively about the threat to public health care, posed by privatization and the government’s failure to uphold the Canada Health Act. Presentations by the Canadian Health Coalition’s and Blood Watch’s emphasized the need for a universal, publicly-funded pharmacare program and why we must ensure that blood collection services stay public. With the departure of long-time health care National Executive Board member Nancy McMurphy, Local 302, conference delegates also nominated Shauna Wilcox, Local 4600 in Cape Breton, on behalf of the Health Care Council.    As the conference closed Health Care Director Savela encouraged local union leaders to get involved and ramp up the union’s fightback to defend health care for all.  For more information and updates visit: unifor.org/healthcare. Wednesday, June 28, 2017 3:22 pm EDT

Auto parts sector sets unified bargaining campaign
Unifor auto parts locals held the first-ever joint bargaining strategy conference, establishing a common set of goals and priorities for future contract talks. “We have our first opportunity in a long time to really build this industry,” National President Jerry Dias told Unifor’s largest-ever gathering of more than 140 auto parts union leaders and staff. Unifor represents about 17,000 workers in the auto parts sector at 120 bargaining units with 79 different employers. Bargaining as a united sector with a common set of priorities will strengthen the union’s position at the bargaining table and enable it to improve conditions in the industry, Dias said. The bargaining conference was the culmination of more than two years of discussions by local leadership from Unifor’s Independent Parts Sector (IPS). The approved bargaining agenda sets a joint strategy for the bargaining table, as well as priorities such as contract length, rejection of two tier wages and temporary work, and better opportunities for hiring of laid off members, among other demands. “This sector provides good jobs in dozens of communities. By taking a united approach to bargaining, we can build on that,” said IPS Council President Robin Dudley. Dudley said the conference was a big step in building solidarity in the sector. Wednesday, June 28, 2017 3:22 pm EDT

Unifor supports Indigenous Games
Unifor partnered with the Toronto 2017 North American Indigenous Games, which will take place in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area on July 16-23. “Unifor is honoured to support the Toronto 2017 North American Indigenous Games. Our sponsorship will help to ensure the broader community can celebrate the achievements of the athletes, and showcase the rich diversity of Indigenous culture,” said Unifor National President Jerry Dias. Dias participated in the official medal unveiling where it was announced that Unifor has been granted official naming rights to all medal ceremonies, as well as naming rights to week-long cultural festivals to be held on the campuses of McMaster University and York University. “Our commitment has always been to deliver a best-in-class Games experience for the athletes. Unifor will help to deliver this vision, not only for the Games, but in creating sustainable opportunities for Indigenous youth and their communities,” said Marcia Trudeau-Bomberry, CEO, Toronto 2017 North American Indigenous Games. The Games will host more than 5,000 participants, 2,000 volunteers and thousands of spectators, in what is expected to be the largest sporting and cultural gathering of Indigenous Peoples in North America. The cultural festivals, presented by Unifor, will be a spectacular showcase of Indigenous culture and heritage, with music, cuisine, artists, vendors, nightly entertainment, and medal ceremonies.  “These Games provide a unique opportunity to use the power of sport to unite cultures and communities in our common goal to build a better future for all,” said Dias. For more information visit www.naig2017.to Wednesday, June 28, 2017 3:22 pm EDT


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