Safe Return to School


This is not how students and education workers should have returned back to the classroom—without a strong COVID-19 prevention plan.

And since Ford’s Conservatives have prorogued the legislature until after the federal election, we are only further delaying the chances of having a plan in place to protect communities.

Dave, experts have been clear on what we need: smaller class sizes, improved ventilation, and permanent paid sick leave. We need the Minister of Education to implement this plan as soon as possible.

Send an email to Minister Lecce demanding he apply these health and safety measures across all schools in Ontario. We’ve already drafted the email for you, all you have to do is press send.

By emailing the Minister of Education, you’re adding your voice to our push for greater protections in every school—so our students and education workers across Ontario feel safe and listened to.

Dave, help us make sure students and education workers go back to the classroom with the support they deserve.

Email Minister Lecce and demand a STRONG back to school safety plan.

In solidarity,

The Ontario Federation of Labour

416-441-2731 | 1-800-668-9138
[email protected]
15 Gervais Dr, Suite 202, Toronto, ON M3C 1Y8

Sent via To update your email address, change your name or address, or to stop receiving emails from Ontario Federation of Labour, please click here.


Happy Labour Day, 2021

Happy Labour Day!

  Another Labour Day amidst a global pandemic, unable to celebrate in our normal fashion, BUT we will CELEBRATE!  Looking back over the past 18 months, reflecting on sacrifices and accomplishment’s that were made by so many workers taking care of us when we were ill/affected by the virus, ensuring our safety, making sure food was available and keeping society functioning shows not only dedication to others but also proves that we, workers, will be responsible for the recovery of the economy.   The Grey Bruce Labour Council has absolute admiration for all workers, but particularly recognizes the effort of the essential and frontline workers who kept working tirelessly throughout the pandemic and continue to do so today.

   All workers are celebrated on Labour Day, today we celebrate not only our accomplishments of the past 18 months but all of those in history.  Many rights we enjoy today were fought for and won, minimum wages, overtime pay, workplace safety standards, maternity and parental leave, vacation pay, protection from discrimination and harassment are just a few examples of what labour can do.  We will do it again, together, as we recover from COVID-19, we will fight for as strong recovery plan that includes living wages, benefits like paid sick leave and pensions for all workers, universal, affordable child care, and we will fight to end decades long inequalities that has long plagued marginalized workers, particularly women of colour, workers with disabilities, and many others.  We will fight for the end of injustice for Indigenous, Muslim and all racialized communities, together we will lead the way and there is no doubt we will prevail.

The pre-pandemic world wasn’t working for everyone, today we commit together that we will lead the recovery and we will lead the way to a better future for all.  On this Labour Day amidst a global pandemic and a world full of injustice, I urge you to take the time today, to not only reflect and celebrate the accomplishments of the past and those of today, but to commit to helping ensure a better future for all.

Happy Labour Day!

Kevin Smith, President

Grey Bruce Labour Council


2021 Labour Day, Grey Bruce Labour Council, Immediate Release

August 26, 2021-For Immediate Release

Grey Bruce Labour Council on Labour Day


               Another Labour Day under the dark cloud of COVID-19 does not mean that Labour Day is not as meaningful as every Labour Day preceding it. Due to the sacrifice of frontline and essential workers, Labour Day under such circumstances is in all likelihood more relevant than most past Labour Days. Labour Council President Kevin Smith reminds us all “that keeping us fed, keeping the lights on, teaching our children, tending to the sick and injured and many more key services were not delivered by CEO’s or the one percenters during the pandemic, but by the very people that were taken for granted until the global pandemic arrived.”

               Muted by the pandemic, the Labour Council is planning a COVID compliant gathering at the Gazebo – Queens Park Bandstand (down from the library) in Owen Sound. The gathering will be on the September 5th (Sunday) from 2:30-4:00PM. A few speakers will be present, and it is hoped that this will keep us committed more than ever to a bigger and better celebration in 2022 and beyond. Foodbank donations will be welcomed.

               The Grey Bruce Labour Council is grateful to the communities that happily show their support for Labour Day, Brockton, Owen Sound and Arran-Elderslie by flying the “Celebrating Labour” flag. The Labour Council also asked other communities to fly the flag, but sadly they declined or simply ignored the opportunity to demonstrate support for workers in their communities.

               “Labour Day is a day of celebration and contrary to vast numbers of misconceptions it is a day to celebrate the contribution of all workers” says Labour Council VP for Grey, Chris Stephen.

               “The Labour Council anxiously looks to 2022 with high hopes of parades and picnics. Our partners, the Unifor retirees, and all labour council affiliates, friends and allies look forward to our Port Elgin parade and Unifor Family Education Centre celebratory lunch and prize draws” say Labour Council VP for Bruce, Dave Trumble.

               It is hoped that even with our much quieter Labour Day gathering on Sunday the 5th that the affiliates, friends and allies of Labour will drop by the gazebo.




Le français suit

Erin O’Toole has proven time and again he is no friend of working Canadians

OTTAWA – Erin O’Toole’s policy announcement today was short on details and left more questions than answers. Canadians are left asking: 

• Would worker representatives have the same rights and powers as the other Board directors? 
• Will they have access to all the same financial and corporate information? 
• Can O’Toole name any CEOs of federally regulated companies he has spoken to who welcome scrutiny of their corporation on issues like executive compensation by the workers they employ?
• What sanctions would O’Toole impose on companies that refuse to comply?

“Erin O’Toole won’t provide details because he knows full well his policy has no teeth and is a non-starter for these companies,” said Bea Bruske, President of the Canadian Labour Congress. “Mr. O’Toole’s record is one of attacking workers and weakening unions. His opportunistic rhetoric and empty promises today do nothing to change that.” 

As cabinet minister under Stephen Harper, Erin O’Toole attacked workers’ right to organize and helped weaken Canada’s unions when he voted to pass bills that took away the rights of workers to refuse dangerous work, made organizing more difficult and gave new powers to the Minister of Labour to hold over unions. 

“Mr. O’Toole not only voted to strip away the rights of workers, when he had the chance to reverse these damaging laws, he refused,” said Bruske. “As leader of the Conservative Party, he put big business ahead of emergency help for workers and families. Working Canadians have never been Mr. O’Toole’s priority.”
Bruske added that while Erin O’Toole sat around the cabinet table, Conservatives signed on to short-sighted trade deals that exported away thousands of good jobs and an investment deal with China that exploited workers, put the environment at risk and left Canada vulnerable to being sued by China. 

“Canadians can’t risk Erin O’Toole,” concluded Bruske. “He has shown time and again, he is no friend to working Canadians.”  

CLC Media Relations
[email protected]

 Link to statement on website


Erin O’Toole a prouvé à maintes reprises qu’il n’est pas l’ami des travailleurs canadiens

OTTAWA – L’annonce politique d’Erin O’Toole aujourd’hui n’était pas très détaillée et a suscité plus de questions qu’elle n’a apporté de réponses. Les Canadiennes et Canadiens se demandent : 

• Les représentants des travailleuses et travailleurs auraient-ils les mêmes droits et pouvoirs que les autres membres de conseil d’administration? 
• Auront-ils accès aux mêmes renseignements financiers et corporatifs? 
• M. O’Toole peut-il nommer un seul PDG d’entreprise assujetti aux lois fédérales à qui il a parlé qui serait d’accord avec l’examen de son entreprise sur des questions comme l’indemnisation des dirigeants par les travailleurs qu’ils emploient?
• Quelles sanctions M. O’Toole imposerait-il aux entreprises qui refusent de se conformer à cet examen?

« Erin O’Toole ne fournira pas de détails parce qu’il sait bien que sa politique est dépourvue de mordant et qu’elle est vouée à l’échec auprès de ces entreprises », déclare Bea Bruske, présidente du Congrès du travail du Canada. « M. O’Toole a un bilan connu d’attaques envers les travailleuses et travailleurs et d’affaiblissement des syndicats. Son discours opportuniste et ses promesses vides d’aujourd’hui n’y changent rien. » 

Alors qu’il était ministre sous Stephen Harper, Erin O’Toole a attaqué le droit des travailleurs de se syndiquer et a contribué à affaiblir les syndicats du Canada en votant pour l’adoption de projets de loi retirant le droit des travailleurs de refuser un travail dangereux, rendant la syndicalisation plus difficile et donnant de nouveaux pouvoirs au ministre du Travail sur les syndicats. 

« Non seulement M. O’Toole a-t-il voté pour éliminer les droits des travailleuses et travailleurs, mais il a refusé d’annuler ces lois dommageables quand il en a eu l’occasion », poursuit Mme Bruske. « En tant que chef du Parti conservateur, il a fait passer les grandes entreprises avant l’aide d’urgence pour les travailleuses et travailleurs et les familles. Les travailleuses et travailleurs du Canada n’ont jamais été la priorité de M. O’Toole. »
Mme Bruske a ajouté que lorsqu’Erin O’Toole était ministre, les conservateurs ont signé des accords commerciaux sans vision et permis l’exportation de milliers de bons emplois et une entente d’investissement avec la Chine qui a exploité des travailleurs, a nui à l’environnement et a rendu le Canada vulnérable aux poursuites intentées par la Chine. 

« La population canadienne ne peut risquer Erin O’Toole », conclut Mme Bruske. « Il a prouvé à maintes reprises qu’il n’est pas l’ami des travailleurs canadiens. »

Relations avec les médias du CTC
[email protected]

Lien à a déclaration sur le site Web

Labour Day 2021

Greetings Sisters and Brothers,

Once again, this year as we approach Labour Day, we find ourselves at the mercy of the global pandemic. Variants continue to force us to show an abundance of care a caution in how we celebrate and meet. The Grey Bruce Labour Council will not let Labour Day be a casualty of the pandemic in 2021 but ensuring the health and safety of all people remains the highest of priorities.

                Approaching one-hundred and fifty years of celebrating labour in Canada, the celebration of working people is a tradition with no less a rich history in Grey and Bruce Counties. Inheriting the great privilege of sustaining Labour Day in our region, the Grey Bruce Labour Council has found friends and allies across a great spectrum of people, affiliates and organizations. The pandemic with all its dangers will limit our celebrations, but it is this very pandemic that has demonstrated that it is workers that have ensured our very survival and provided for us the ability to sustain our public services. The recovery from the pandemic will also show us that recovery will only be successful if workers lead the recovery.

No full recovery will be possible without workers and the input of workers. No recovery will be possible without vigorous and fully funded public healthcare, education and the full mosaic of public services.

In making sure that Labour’s voice is clear the Grey Bruce Labour Council will be holding a COVID compliant gathering at the Gazebo – Queens Park Bandstand (down from the library) in Owen Sound. The gathering will be on the September 5th (Sunday) from 2:30-4:00PM. A few speakers will be present, and it is hoped that this will keep us committed more than ever to a bigger and better celebration in 2022 and beyond.


Labour Day Celebrations

Sunday September 5th, 2021

2:30 -4:00pm

Queens Park Bandstand  (848 1st Ave W, Owen Sound)

Looking forward to seeing you!

In solidarity,


Kevin Smith, President

Grey Bruce Labour Council

[email protected]


Feeding Families

Feeding Families - Restaurant Relief continues.  


Thanks to Grey Bruce Labour Council  for purchasing 40 turkey dinners from Kettles Back Home Cookin' which were then delivered  to Owen Sound Hunger and Relief Effort   


This is a win/win for the restaurants and our community!  



Workers Deserve Input

Ontario Federation of Labour This week’s eblast is packed with ways to take action. Use our new campaign hub to support worker input on the future of work, demand the government repeal Bill 124 & 195, and more! In this eblast: • Support Worker Input on the Future of Work • Respect & Protect Workers’ Rights • Demand Stronger Training Standards • Follow the Science Toolkit • No More Profiting from Pain • Advocating for Transgender/Transitioning Youth in Ontario Public Schools • Prevention Link Update ________________________________________ Support Worker Input on the Future of Work Ford’s Conservative Government has struck a committee on the “future of work” without any representation from workers themselves. Instead, the Ontario Workforce Recovery Advisory Committee is primarily made up of employers, while it leaves out representation from labour. The best way to ensure a better future for workers is to ensure they have a seat at the table. Email your MPP, Doug Ford, and Monte McNaughton to demand worker representation. Click here to send an email. ________________________________________ Respect & Protect Workers’ Rights Ford’s Conservative Government has a long track record of undermining workers’ rights including severely limiting wage and benefit increases for public sector workers with Bill 124 and allowing employers to override collective agreements and fair processes with Bill 195. Workers deserve to have their rights respected and protected. Take action to demand the government repeal Bills 124 & 195. Send an email now. ________________________________________ Demand Stronger Training Standards The Ontario Federation of Labour is calling on the Ontario Government to implement four priority training standards recommended by the Expert Panel on Health and Safety. These four priority training standards would ensure: ➡️ people who work with and around hazardous chemicals can use WHMIS labels and sheets to protect their health and safety; ➡️ health and safety representatives have the skills and knowledge to improve their workplace conditions; ➡️ everyone doing work at heights knows how to use the right protections and fall protection equipment; and ➡️ workers on construction sites get hazard awareness training before they start work. Tell us your story about why stronger training standards are important to you. Click here to learn more. ________________________________________ Follow the Science Toolkit While Ontarians are beginning to see the other side of the pandemic, some workers still do not have the protections they need. Government, public health bodies, and employers must follow the science, and enforce the law to protect workers from airborne exposure. Download our Follow the Science Toolkit here. ________________________________________ No more profiting from pain Join the protest to stop Doug Ford’s plan to give Orchard Villa a new 30-year license and expansion: WHEN: Wednesday, July 14 12:00 p.m. WHERE: Outside Orchard Villa, 1955 Valley Farm Rd., Pickering The residents & families of Orchard Villa have suffered enough. For-profit chain Southbridge owns this long-term care home where 71 residents died of COVID-19 and others died of dehydration, starvation, and horrific neglect. There has been NO accountability for the corporate owners, whose LTC homes have the worst death rate in Ontario. ________________________________________ Advocating for Transgender/Transitioning Youth in Ontario Public Schools On Monday, July 12 @ 7:00 p.m. OSSTF and community partners are holding a summer discussion panel for parents and community members - Advocating for Transgender/Transitioning Youth in Ontario Public Schools. The event will be moderated by Karen Littlewood, OSSTF President, and will feature a guest speaker panel consisting of parent and community activists, who are skilled child advocators, and their transgender children who will speak to challenges and successes of transgender/transitioning students in public schools. Register here. ________________________________________ Prevention Link Update Mental Health First Aid: This summer, we are hosting a Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) virtual training with an experienced Mental Health First Aid Canada Instructor Cindy Krysac. MHFA is the support provided to a person who may be experiencing a decline in their mental well-being or a mental health crisis. Sign up and get certified by the Mental Health Commission of Canada. Cost: $169.00 (incl. HST). Spaces are limited! Register before July 30, 2021, 12:00 p.m. Summer School: Sign up for our popular introductory workshops of Level 1 and Level 2 to explore worker and employer rights and obligations under the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, and the benefits and services available. Our team has created interactive two-week long courses using an industry-leading Learning Management System with modules, presentations, videos, and discussions to make this valuable program engaging. Learn all about the workers’ compensation system in Ontario from the comfort of your own home with the support of the Prevention Link Team. Who should attend: WSIB representatives, Workers’ Compensation activists, RTW specialists, union leadership and union stewards, H&S representatives and activists, supervisors and employers, young workers. Cost: $399.00 per course. LEVEL 1: Rights and Obligations: August 9-23, 2021 (Register before July 18 to get $50.00 discount) LEVEL 2: Benefits and Services (Prerequisite course: Level 1): September 1-15, 2021 (Register before August 8 to get $50.00 discount) Follow us on social media to learn more about what we offer, things we care about, and workers’ compensation: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn. 416-441-2731 | 1-800-668-9138 [email protected] 15 Gervais Dr, Suite 202, Toronto, ON M3C 1Y8 Sent via To update your email address, change your name or address, or to stop receiving emails from Ontario Federation of Labour, please click here.

Kincardine Pride Disappointed With MP Ben Lobb



Kincardine Pride Disappointed in MP Ben Lobb’s Vote on Conversion Therapy

Kincardine, ON | Kincardine Pride Inc. is disappointed and disheartened to discover Huron Bruce Member of Parliament (MP) Ben Lobb voted against Bill C-6, a bill to amend the Criminal Code to protect LGBTQ2+[1] youth from undergoing conversion therapy.

On June 22, 2021, the Canadian House of Commons voted on the third reading of Bill C-6, where it passed and is now on its way to be voted in the Senate. Sixty-three conservative MPs voted against Bill C-6 – including MP Lobb. 

“Conversion therapy is an unscientific, unethical and harmful practice that puts our youth in danger and is a form of torture for LGBTQ2+ people,” says Fort Papalia (he/him), President of Kincardine Pride Inc., “seeing that a local politician does not support the ban of conversion therapy is troubling for our youth and our entire LGBT2Q+ community.”

Conversion therapy is any treatment, including individual talk therapy, behavioural or aversion therapy, group therapy treatments, medical or drug-induced treatments, which attempt to change, suppress or deny someone’s sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. Simply put, it is abuse.

“More than 50% of rural LGBTQ2+ individuals believe conservative values and beliefs are the largest barriers to the rural LGBTQ2+ community,” says AJ Adams (he/him), a rural LGBTQ2+ advocate/educator and advisor of Kincardine Pride. “This action by MP Lobb is despicable and adds to the narrative that conservatives and rural communities are anti-LGBTQ2+. This is a narrative that we know isn’t true and needs to change” adds Adams.

Bill C-6 is an amendment to the Criminal Code; it proposes five criminal offences related to conversion therapy. If the bill passes, it will be illegal to force a minor to undergo conversion therapy; force a person to undergo conversion therapy against their will; profit off of providing conversion therapy; advertise conversion therapy; and take a minor out of Canada to undergo conversion therapy abroad.

Being LGBTQ2+ is not something that can be “cured” as there is nothing wrong with being LGBTQ2+ . Huron Bruce LGBTQ2+ youth troubled by the news of their MP’s actions can find support through LGBT Youth Line, Kids Help Phone and WES for Youth Online.

You can learn more about conversion therapy in Canada at


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For more information please contact:

Fort Papalia
(he/him)                                                                                AJ Adams (he/him)
President of Kincardine Pride Inc.                                                          Rural LGBTQ2+ Advocate & Educator             
[email protected]                                                                   [email protected]


[1] LGBTQ2+ is an acronym for lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer and two-spirit. 


We Need #SafeSeptember


Throughout the pandemic, the Ford Government’s refusal to invest in safety and listen to science has been detrimental to education in Ontario.

But the Conservative Government’s refusal to ensure safe and healthy classrooms is not the first time they have prioritized profit over people in Ontario’s education sectors. Since 2018 Ford’s Conservative Government have made cuts across the board from child care to K-12, to post-secondary education.

That’s why we’re hosting an Education Assembly this Saturday, June 26 @ 9:30 a.m. Workers, students, and parents across education sectors are coming together to plan and advocate for a just and safe September. Will you join us?

Here’s the plan for the day:

  • Education – Hear from keynote speakers about chronic issues across education sectors
  • Inspiration – Share ideas about what workers, parents, and students need to return to school safely
  • Action – Strategize and develop actions to do throughout the summer to ensure the government does what is needed for a safe September

Sign up here to help us develop an education plan that keeps everyone healthy and safe. Together, we are the power of many fighting for a better public education system for all.

In solidarity,

The Ontario Federation of Labour

416-441-2731 | 1-800-668-9138
[email protected]
15 Gervais Dr, Suite 202, Toronto, ON M3C 1Y8