For Immediate Release-Grey Bruce Labour Council-Jan 29th, 2018
On January 29th, 2017, in the largest mass shooting in Canada since 1989, six Muslims were murdered at the Islamic Cultural Centre of Quebec City, a mosque in the Sainte-Foy neighbourhood of Quebec City, Canada.
The names of the six peaceful worshippers killed were Ibrahima Barry (aged 39), Mamadou Tanou Barry (aged 42), Khaled Belkacemi (aged 60), Aboubaker Thabti (aged 44), Abdelkrim Hassane (aged 41) and Azzedine Soufiane (aged 57).
Kevin Smith, President of the Grey Bruce Labour Council, notes “that the names must be repeated and remembered, just as the names of the fourteen women massacred at Ecole Polytechnique in Montreal are repeated and remembered each year on December 6th and all those whose lives have been ended prematurely or been forever harmed by racism and the divisiveness so often on display across Canada and around the world”.
Nineteen others were injured, including Aymen Derbali, who is now paralysed.
In the days immediately after the massacre many delegates to the Grey Bruce Labour Council stood shoulder to shoulder with our Sisters and Brothers. Labour Council Vice-President, Dave Trumble, remembers standing with the Community of Kincardine at the Kincardine Islamic Centre just days after the tragedy. “It was one of the coldest nights of the year and the community stood in a display of solidarity and sorrow. Not only did the community stand with our Sisters and Brothers we heard all facets of our community dedicate and rededicate themselves to standing for equality of all people and to stand in opposition to hate, intolerance, and any form of behavior that seeks to undermine the dignity of anyone or any group”.
Some news has pointed out to some corners where “A National Day of Action Against Islamophobia” is receiving pushback as being too controversial. The day of action does nothing to suggest that discrimination does not exist elsewhere, but in today’s climate anti-Islamic sentiment is on the rise and calling such abhorrent behavior by name is key to it’s elimination.
Many Grey-Bruce Labour Council Delegates helped organize and march in parades and days of action against male violence and according to Smith, “the same type of pushback took place. But, just like then, calling out this rising tide of discrimination and violence against Muslims must be called by name so that we may go about the hard work of ensuring no one is harmed because of their religion, race, ethnicity, indigenous status, sexuality, gender, disability, place of origin or age”.
The Grey Bruce Labour Council asks our community to take time to remember the lives lost one year ago and to dedicate themselves to standing up against all forms of hate, discrimination and/or anything that undermines the dignity of people or a person.
The Grey Bruce Labour Council represents a diverse membership of public and private sector unions and has been the voice of workers in the Grey Bruce region for 62 years.
For Further Information,
Dave Trumble Kevin Smith
Vice President, Bruce President
Grey Bruce Labour Council Grey Bruce Labour Council
Toronto – Putting the architect of hydro privatization in charge of alcohol and cannabis sales will be a financial and public health disaster, says OPSEU President Warren (Smokey) Thomas.
“Ed Clark has always put profits before people,” says Thomas. “Giving him the keys to the LCBO will be a huge boon for Bay Street, but it’s going to cause real harm on Main Street.”
Thomas is demanding that Premier Wynne rescind her appointment of Clark as chairperson of the LCBO, and choose a leader with a track record of public service, not profiteering.
Clark is former CEO of TD Bank. Soon after she took office, Premier Wynne made Clark her unelected and unaccountable “business advisor.”
Clark ignored credible research that private alcohol sales lead to an increase in alcohol-related deaths, and led the push to give grocery corporations permission to sell beer and wine.
“These are the same corporations that have been fixing the price of bread for a generation,” Thomas says. “We can’t trust them to sell alcohol responsibly. But with Clark in charge, these corporations will be selling even more. And I have no doubt he’ll eventually push to let them sell cannabis, too.”
Thomas says Clark’s push for private alcohol sales also threatens the large annual dividend Ontario currently gets from public alcohol sales.
“The province received a $1.9 billion dividend from the LCBO in 2016,” Thomas says. “That’s money that goes straight back into our hospitals, highways, and schools. But the more we privatize alcohol sales, the more of that money will be taken from our communities and given instead to giant corporations.”
Before privatizing alcohol sales, Clark led the deeply unpopular privatization of Hydro One, a scheme that has drawn stinging criticism from the province’s Financial Accountability Officer.
“The collapse this week of the privatization giant Carillion is just one more painful reminder that privatization can’t be trusted and we can’t trust people like Clark who continue to push privatization,” Thomas says.
“I call on Premier Wynne to rescind his appointment now. Don’t force your brand new cabinet appointees to rubber-stamp this debacle in the making.”
For more information: Warren (Smokey) Thomas, 613-329-1931
Getting ready for the actions and campaigns ahead of us the Grey Bruce Labour Council elected their Executive Committee and Trustees on Jan 22nd, 2018 for the next two years.
Gord Cale (Treasurer, OSSTF), Dave Trumble (VP Bruce, PWU), Kevin Smith (President, OSSTF), Anna Morrison (VP Grey, OECTA), Deb Carter (Secretary, OECTA)
Karen Gventer (Trustee, OPSEU), Jeff Cronin (Sargent at Arms, Society of Energy Professionals, Chris Stephen (Trustee, CUPE 255)
Missing from the photo;
Linda Dow-Sitch (Trustee, ONA)
It goes without saying that good media coverage can go a long way to making an event successful. The information Picket in Kincardine on Jan 19th had great participation and our media friends were indeed gracious. Thanks to all concerned.