CAW Gives The Boots to Jim Flaherty

October 4, 2008

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CAW Gives The Boots To Jim Flaherty
CAW Gives The Boots To Jim Flaherty
dated October 4, 2008

Whitby, Ontario
October 4, 2008

       In a symbolic gesture the Canadian Auto Workers union gave the boot to federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty. Actually it was thousands of boots which were trucked in from across the province from workers who had lost their jobs.
       At a rally in front of Flaherty's campaign headquarters in Whitby, Ontario October 6th , hundreds of workers expressed their anger with the Conservative government for its disregard for the 200,000 workers who have lost their jobs since it took office. Mary Beth Boeyen, a single mom who was laid off from the Autoliv plant in Tilbury summed up the crowds feelings.

Mary Beth Boeyen

       "If this keeps going we're all going to end up underneath the bridges of the 401. Where are we to go? What are we supposed to do? Where are we supposed to find a job. There are no jobs out there. Harper says, "we're creating jobs." Yeah they are minimum wage. I think Mr. Harper's wage should be minimum wage and see if he can live off of that!
       And as far as I'm concerned, every lay off, every plant closure, if we're out of a job, they should be too!"

       CAW President Ken Lewenza laid the blame for the manufacturing crisis on the Conservative government in Ottawa.

Ken Lewenza
CAW President

       "Today ladies and gentlemen we're talking about 200,000 job losses under the Stephen Harper regime. Since his government took over two and a half years ago, 200,000 jobs lost. Now ladies and gentlemen, even the experts are predicting that without a change in government policy; without a change in progressive policy there's going to be another 250,000 manufacturing jobs lost in the next four to five years unless we can stop Harper, Flaherty, Colin Carrie and every Tory that's out to destroy the working class, the middle class and those impoverished in our country."

       CAW Local 222 president Chris Buckley said Flaherty is ignoring the pain in his own riding where 11,000 good paying manufacturing jobs have been lost and replaced with low paying service work.

Chris Buckley
CAW Local 222 President

       "Does Jim Flaherty care about working men and women in his backyard? Absolutely not! If he did, we wouldn't have lost 11,000 jobs in this community with no end in sight. We are haemorrhaging good paying Canadian jobs. You've heard speakers talk about personal stories. We've all come in contact with men and women, both middle age and young workers who have lost their jobs and they can't find employment. And if they do they are finding minimum wage jobs and are working two or three just the keep their heads above the water. That's an absolute disgrace in a country as great as Canada."

       CAW President Ken Lewenza urged voters on October 14 to vote strategically to defeat Jim Flaherty and the Harper government.

Ken Lewenza
CAW President

       "I understand that the only chance to knock off this bird is Brent Fullard and ladies and gentlemen you have got to go to the polls and vote for the candidate that is going to knock off a Tory, even if you have got to hold your nose to do it, because Canada is too important!"

       As the boots piled up in front of Flaherty's office, each pair representing a worker who has lost their job or been laid off, the union continued it's campaign to defeat the Harper Conservative government.

Ken Lewenza
CAW President

       "We're more than just a union. We are a group of concerned Canadians that care about the direction of Canada, that care about what each other needs, that lean on one another when we need it the very most and today we need it. And brothers and sisters, on behalf of the CAW I thank you for your contribution.
       I challenge you to work even harder. I challenge you to make a difference and I challenge you to be inspired every day to make a change in the lives of all Canadians, not just those represented by auto workers."

CAW Fighting Back Makes A Difference.

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