Click here to close now.

SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Liz McMillan, Carmen Gonzalez, Pat Romanski, Plutora Blog, Peter Silva

News Feed Item

Women Rise As Unions Rise: OFL Statement on International Women's Day-March 8, 2013

TORONTO, ONTARIO -- (Marketwire) -- 03/08/13 -- As millions of women around the world observe International Women's Day, the Ontario Federation of Labour will proudly celebrate the role that unions have played in elevating the living standards of all women in Canada. The history of union achievements in Ontario has been one of establishing basic and fundamental rights for all people, but here is no question that women workers have gained the most. However, austerity cuts to public services and anti-worker legislation currently being championed Conservatives at every level of government today pose a threat to many of the gains that women have made and could roll back standards for all workers.

"Rising inequality is having a devastating effect on Ontario families, but there is no doubt that austerity cuts are hitting women the hardest hit," said OFL President Sid Ryan. "The highest rate of unionization among women workers is in the public sector, where they typically earn 10 percent more than their private sector counterparts. When those services are cut, it affects women disproportionately because women are the majority of public sector workers and are often the primary users of public services."

Women workers who do not belong to a union are eight times more likely to earn poverty wages and are half as likely to have a workplace pension. However, regardless of union membership, all Canadian women have benefited from the achievements of unions. Laws guaranteeing the minimum wage, pay equity, maternity leave and harassment free workplaces were all secured because of the work of trade unions.

However, despite these gains, inequality is still most acutely felt by women and their dependents. Among those with full-time employment, women workers continue to take home only $0.70 for every dollar earned by men and racialized women earn only $0.60 compared to non-racialized men and 16 percent less than racialized men. Women continue to find themselves among the poorest of the poor, especially women raising children in single-parent families, who are almost five times more likely to be poor than those in two-parent families. This gender gap nearly triples for older women who are living on their own and is magnified among women in all of the most vulnerable populations: Aboriginal people, people from racialized communities, recent immigrants, persons with disabilities and so many others. As one report puts it, "Gender creates a cleavage of vulnerability that cuts across all other groups."

"The massive job loss of the 2008 recession hit the North America's male-dominated manufacturing sector the hardest, but the austerity job cuts of this decade will deliver the most devastating blows to women and other equity seeking groups," said OFL Secretary-Treasurer Nancy Hutchison. "Ontario needs a 'people's budget' that puts equity and fairness at the centre of an economic recovery that benefits everyone."

Each year, International Women's Day (IWD) is celebrated around the world on March 8 to recognize the economic, political and social achievements of women. The day marks the anniversary of the 15,000 women garment workers who marched in 1908 to demand shorter working hours, an end to child labour, safe working conditions and equal pay. Their slogan - "Bread & Roses" - rang through the streets. Bread symbolized economic security and roses symbolized social justice and a better life.

For over a century, women have sought to unionize their workplaces as a vehicle to pull themselves out of low wage conditions, secure decent benefits and improve their standard of living. Now these basic and democratic rights are being threatened by Canadian Conservative politicians who are championing American-style laws that would destroy collective bargaining. The Ontario Federation of Labour has launched a People's Budget campaign to travel the province throughout the month of March soliciting recommendations from Ontarians in every community on how to make the provincial budget fair for everyone. Submissions are also being received online at www.thePeoplesBudget.ca and will be compiled into a report presented to Ontario's new Premier - the first woman to ever hold this post - Kathleen Wynne. However, the OFL has also released two new reports, The Rising of Us All and Working for Less, that documents the gains that unions have made and highlighting that vital role that unions play in elevating women and other equity seeking groups. Both reports are meant to challenge Conservative anti-union rhetoric and are available at: www.OFL.ca/index.php/Campaigns/WorkersRights.

"Now is not the time to take women's progress over the last century for granted. This year, women workers across Ontario are reflecting on the generations of our mothers and grandmothers who fought hard to achieve equality and human rights," said Hutchison. "At International Women's Day events across the province this year, women will be redoubling our efforts to challenge austerity and the anti-union agenda that puts corporate greed ahead of human needs."

The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) represents 54 unions and one million workers in Ontario. For information, visit www.OFL.ca and follow the OFL on Facebook and Twitter: @OFLabour.

More Stories By Marketwired .

Copyright © 2009 Marketwired. All rights reserved. All the news releases provided by Marketwired are copyrighted. Any forms of copying other than an individual user's personal reference without express written permission is prohibited. Further distribution of these materials is strictly forbidden, including but not limited to, posting, emailing, faxing, archiving in a public database, redistributing via a computer network or in a printed form.

Latest Stories
Cryptography has become one of the most underappreciated, misunderstood components of technology. It’s too easy for salespeople to dismiss concerns with three letters that nobody wants to question. ‘Yes, of course, we use AES.’ But what exactly are you trusting to be the ultimate guardian of your data? Let’s face it – you probably don’t know. An organic, grass-fed Kobe steak is a far cry from a Big Mac, but they’re both beef, right? Not exactly. Crypto is the same way. The US government require...
The speed of product development has increased massively in the past 10 years. At the same time our formal secure development and SDL methodologies have fallen behind. This forces product developers to choose between rapid release times and security. In his session at DevOps Summit, Michael Murray, Director of Cyber Security Consulting and Assessment at GE Healthcare, examined the problems and presented some solutions for moving security into the DevOps lifecycle to ensure that we get fast AND ...
One of the biggest impacts of the Internet of Things is and will continue to be on data; specifically data volume, management and usage. Companies are scrambling to adapt to this new and unpredictable data reality with legacy infrastructure that cannot handle the speed and volume of data. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Don DeLoach, CEO and president of Infobright, will discuss how companies need to rethink their data infrastructure to participate in the IoT, including: Data storage: Understand...
Docker is becoming very popular--we are seeing every major private and public cloud vendor racing to adopt it. It promises portability and interoperability, and is quickly becoming the currency of the Cloud. In his session at DevOps Summit, Bart Copeland, CEO of ActiveState, discussed why Docker is so important to the future of the cloud, but will also take a step back and show that Docker is actually only one piece of the puzzle. Copeland will outline the bigger picture of where Docker fits a...
Since 2008 and for the first time in history, more than half of humans live in urban areas, urging cities to become “smart.” Today, cities can leverage the wide availability of smartphones combined with new technologies such as Beacons or NFC to connect their urban furniture and environment to create citizen-first services that improve transportation, way-finding and information delivery. In her session at @ThingsExpo, Laetitia Gazel-Anthoine, CEO of Connecthings, will focus on successful use c...
The Workspace-as-a-Service (WaaS) market will grow to $6.4B by 2018. In his session at 16th Cloud Expo, Seth Bostock, CEO of IndependenceIT, will begin by walking the audience through the evolution of Workspace as-a-Service, where it is now vs. where it going. To look beyond the desktop we must understand exactly what WaaS is, who the users are, and where it is going in the future. IT departments, ISVs and service providers must look to workflow and automation capabilities to adapt to growing ...
Sensor-enabled things are becoming more commonplace, precursors to a larger and more complex framework that most consider the ultimate promise of the IoT: things connecting, interacting, sharing, storing, and over time perhaps learning and predicting based on habits, behaviors, location, preferences, purchases and more. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Tom Wesselman, Director of Communications Ecosystem Architecture at Plantronics, will examine the still nascent IoT as it is coalescing, includin...
Software Defined Storage provides many benefits for customers including agility, flexibility, faster adoption of new technology and cost effectiveness. However, for IT organizations it can be challenging and complex to build your Enterprise Grade Storage from software. In his session at Cloud Expo, Paul Turner, CMO at Cloudian, looked at the new Original Design Manufacturer (ODM) market and how it is changing the storage world. Now Software Defined Storage companies can build Enterprise grade ...
Almost everyone sees the potential of Internet of Things but how can businesses truly unlock that potential. The key will be in the ability to discover business insight in the midst of an ocean of Big Data generated from billions of embedded devices via Systems of Discover. Businesses will also need to ensure that they can sustain that insight by leveraging the cloud for global reach, scale and elasticity.
The Internet of Things (IoT) promises to evolve the way the world does business; however, understanding how to apply it to your company can be a mystery. Most people struggle with understanding the potential business uses or tend to get caught up in the technology, resulting in solutions that fail to meet even minimum business goals. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jesse Shiah, CEO / President / Co-Founder of AgilePoint Inc., showed what is needed to leverage the IoT to transform your business. ...
Hadoop as a Service (as offered by handful of niche vendors now) is a cloud computing solution that makes medium and large-scale data processing accessible, easy, fast and inexpensive. In his session at Big Data Expo, Kumar Ramamurthy, Vice President and Chief Technologist, EIM & Big Data, at Virtusa, will discuss how this is achieved by eliminating the operational challenges of running Hadoop, so one can focus on business growth. The fragmented Hadoop distribution world and various PaaS soluti...
IoT is still a vague buzzword for many people. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Mike Kavis, Vice President & Principal Cloud Architect at Cloud Technology Partners, discussed the business value of IoT that goes far beyond the general public's perception that IoT is all about wearables and home consumer services. He also discussed how IoT is perceived by investors and how venture capitalist access this space. Other topics discussed were barriers to success, what is new, what is old, and what th...
The true value of the Internet of Things (IoT) lies not just in the data, but through the services that protect the data, perform the analysis and present findings in a usable way. With many IoT elements rooted in traditional IT components, Big Data and IoT isn’t just a play for enterprise. In fact, the IoT presents SMBs with the prospect of launching entirely new activities and exploring innovative areas. CompTIA research identifies several areas where IoT is expected to have the greatest impac...
The Internet of Things (IoT) is rapidly in the process of breaking from its heretofore relatively obscure enterprise applications (such as plant floor control and supply chain management) and going mainstream into the consumer space. More and more creative folks are interconnecting everyday products such as household items, mobile devices, appliances and cars, and unleashing new and imaginative scenarios. We are seeing a lot of excitement around applications in home automation, personal fitness,...
Advanced Persistent Threats (APTs) are increasing at an unprecedented rate. The threat landscape of today is drastically different than just a few years ago. Attacks are much more organized and sophisticated. They are harder to detect and even harder to anticipate. In the foreseeable future it's going to get a whole lot harder. Everything you know today will change. Keeping up with this changing landscape is already a daunting task. Your organization needs to use the latest tools, methods and ex...