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Over 2,000 workers and their families rallied in Hamilton, ON Mar. 21 demanding the Canadian government put people before profits.

The CLC rally, brought together public and private sector unions to draw attention to how the economic crisis is hurting working Canadians and their families.

“The Conservative government doled out over $200 billion in corporate and bank bailouts, but has turned its back on workers in this country,” said Paul Moist. “It’s time for the federal government to invest in people to protect jobs, social programs, and the Canadian economy.”

Union leaders, along with laid-off workers from the hurting manufacturing sector in Ontario, called on the federal government to fix the Employment Insurance (EI) program, provide proper training for laid-off workers and invest in public infrastructure and public services.  

“We need to join together to demand that government protect and deliver public services for all, protect and expand pensions, human rights, labour rights and real social programs,” said Moist. “Together, with workers from around the globe, we have the power to turn things upside-down to make governments work for people, instead of corporations in addressing the economic crisis.”

The rally was followed by a march to the federal building in downtown Hamilton, and included speeches from labour leaders and politicians, including the new Ontario NDP leader, Andrea Horwath.  A similar rally was held in Belleville, Ontario.