The history between the Conservatives and Canadian labour unions is far from being a fairy tale. Cuts, back-to-work legislation, closures, privatizations; the Conservatives’ multiple attacks to destroy our working conditions while in power should be of great concern to Canadian workers should Mr. O’Toole win the election on Monday.
Mr. O’Toole, the new leader of the Conservative Party, claims to be on the side of working people, but a quick glance at his platform is enough to deflate any hope for us, the activists and defenders of workers’ rights.
Mr. O’Toole’s words pale in comparison to the actions of the Conservative Party. Although he claims to be an “ally” of workers, he actually was a member of Mr. Harper’s cabinet when 26,000 federal employees lost their jobs under the last Conservative government.
Mr. O’Toole supported all of the Harper government’s back-to-work legislation that curtailed the collective bargaining rights of thousands of workers. In 2011, his party passed an unconstitutional back-to-work legislation that threatened to attack our jobs as postal workers.
In 2015, eight thousand of our brothers and sisters were at risk of losing their jobs, and the future of door-to-door mail delivery was at stake. Thousands of citizens, allies, unions, community groups and others from across the country joined us and managed to turn the concerns of postal workers into one of the key issues of the electoral campaign. And guess what? We won.
You have repeatedly turned down our requests for meetings, and our calls and emails go unanswered. You don’t seem to realize that we are in the middle of an election campaign and that Canadian labour unions represent thousands of voters.