Unions will be leaders in tackling the affordability crisis. That was the message from the head of Canada’s house of labour, Canadian Labour Congress President Bea Bruske, in her address to the CUPE BC convention Friday afternoon.

“Workers are demanding better; they are not satisfied with the status quo. And they are turning to unions to get better,” Bruske said, adding that organizing will be a key topic at the upcoming CLC convention. “As the labour movement, we have to seize this moment. We have to work so all workers can have the benefits of having a union card in their pocket.”

Bruske praised CUPE BC’s work in mobilizing members, holding it up as an example for other unions. “You’re working so hard in politically engaging your members. I’m excited to see what CUPE BC will continue to do to keep your members involved.”

Bruske highlighted many of the recent advances Canada’s unions have helped bring about through political advocacy, working with the Federal NDP. She pointed to promised federal anti-scab legislation, national action on affordable childcare, and new legislation that prioritizes workers over creditors as achievements all CLC affiliated unions played a role in – including CUPE.

Closer to home for CUPE BC delegates, Bruske assured continued support for striking Fraser Valley transit workers.

“Fair wages and fair working conditions should be the bare minimum. Be assured 3 million workers represented by the CLC affiliated unions stand with CUPE 561 and their fight for a fair deal,” she said.