On December 6, we mark the anniversary of the 1989 École Polytechnique massacre, where 14 women were singled out and murdered because of their gender. One of those women, Maryse Laganière, was a CUPE member who worked at the school.

Sadly, in the 27 years since the massacre, gender-based discrimination and violence remain widespread in our workplaces and communities. Today, we recognize that such violence has particular impacts on Indigenous, racialized, LGBTTI women and women with disabilities.

On this day, we join with millions of Canadians, in unions and organizations of all kinds, to encourage our members to take action.

There are concrete actions that union members can take:

  • Tell your MP that the federal government’s promised action plan on violence against women should follow the Blueprint created by feminists across the country.
  • Bargain and lobby for paid leave and other protections for women facing domestic violence. See CUPE’s guide and the Canadian Labour Congress resources on domestic violence at work. If you’re in Ontario, follow the Ontario Federation of Labour campaign announcements on Bill 26, for paid domestic violence leave.
  • Support organizations like the Native Women’s Association of Canada in their demands with regard to the national inquiry on missing and murdered Indigenous women, and take action in your community.
  • Organize or attend a December 6 event in your workplace or neighbourhood.

Many CUPE members and staff across the country work daily to end gender-based violence and to support workers and families affected. On December 6, CUPE applauds your activism, and we re-dedicate ourselves to ending violence against women.