Paul Moist, the national president of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), joined the chorus of union activists, social activists, community leaders and elected representatives of the federal, provincial and municipal governments, demanding a stop to the loss of manufacturing jobs in Windsor and Essex counties, Oshawa and across the country.
Speaking to an enthusiastic crowd of over 30,000 Windsor workers and their families, Moist called for government responsibility in ensuring that the on-going loss of jobs stop, and that officials step up to the plate and provide good jobs for Ontarians and Canadians.
Organized by the CAW, Sunday’s rally brought activists, unionists, community leaders, workers and concerned citizens together to demand that manufacturing jobs be protected and kept in cities and towns across the country - providing families with work and keeping Canadian communities vibrant.
Moist called on all candidates in the coming provinicial election on October 10, 2007 to speak up on the loss of manufacturing jobs in the province and to demand that Ottawa take a pro-active role in keeping manufacturing jobs in Ontario and the country.
Moist praised Toronto Mayor David Miller for contracting Bombardier – against severe criticism for not tendering the contract – to provide Toronto with a large number of vehicles and services: “Miller kept jobs in Ontario, he kept jobs in the CAW, and heassisted with keeping the workers in Ontario at work, feeding their families and contributing to the economy…”
Paul Moist pledged that CUPE, “Will walk with the CAW, the CLC, the concerned citizens and politicians in Windsor and elsewhere when it comes to keeping jobs in their communities.”
“We at CUPE believe in strong communities and we will work to ensure that all Canadian communities are strong communities. We represent 560,000 public service workers who understand your loss, your needs and who stand in solidarity with you.”
“Our fathers and grandfathers built this country and we need to ensure the jobs are there for our children and grandchildren,” Moist told a cheering crowd that included a number of families of those who have lost jobs recently and those who are in fear of losing their jobs at any time.
The CUPE president reminded the overflow crowds at the Ford Test Park that the provincial election is just a short time away and said: “On October 10, all candidates in the provincial election must be questioned on their stand when it comes to keeping manufacturing jobs in Canada and they must be held to account for the jobs lost in their constituencies.”
Joining Moist on the podium to demand the three levels of government recognize the strength in communities and the workers’ dedication to preserve their leadership in those communities were Dan Monahan, president of the Tool, Dye and Mold Association, Terry Bernie of the National Farm Workers of Ontario, Ken Georgetti of the Canadian Labour Congress, Hilda Watkins of the Ontario Teachers Federation representing 155,000 Ontario teachers, and Buzz Hargrove, national president of the CAW.
The Windsor rally was organized by the CAW in conjunction with various unions, municipal officials, community activists and numerous citizens groups who are seriously concerned about the loss of manufacturing jobs in Windsor-Essex and across the province.