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see also CUPE’s peace page

The Right Honourable Jean Chrt0069en
Prime Minister of Canada
House of Commons
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 9A6

Dear Prime Minister:

I am writing on behalf of the half million members of the Canadian Union of Public Employees to express our concern with the position the Canadian government is taking on war with Iraq.

CUPE’s National Executive Board, made up of CUPE leadership from around the country, has adopted a formal position opposing war with Iraq.

We do not support Saddam Hussein, his undemocratic rulership, or the brutalities he has brought on Iraqi people who speak out against his regime. But, like the majority of Canadians, we do not believe that war is a solution. War is not a legitimate way to change a leader or a government, not a solution to terrorism, and especially not an appropriate way to gain access to Iraq’s oil fields. Our country, and the men and women who have dedicated their lives to service in Canada’s military, should not be used to fight an unjust war.

War is not in the interest of workers or citizens in Canada or Iraq. War destroys economies and communities. It takes funding away from human services like health care, education, housing and public utilities. A military attack on Iraq will hurt women, children and men in a country where a humanitarian crisis is already underway. During war women, particularly, are always the direct and innocent victims of violence, dislocation and rape.

Prime Minister, we believe you do not have a mandate from the Canadian people to support, or contribute to, a war with Iraq. It is unacceptable that Canada will come up with the resources needed to participate in war with Iraq, while not contributing adequate resources to urgent international priorities like the HIV-AIDS crisis in Africa.

I call on you to join the European countries who are opposing an attack on Iraq and use Canada’s influence to achieve a diplomatic solution to the conflict. I look forward to your response.



National President

:nr/opeiu 491