CAW Council Endorses Pension Guarantee Fight Back and Discussions With OFL

April 17, 2009


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CAW Council Endorses Pension Guarantee Fight Back and Discussions With OFL
CAW Council Endorses Pension Guarantee Fight Back and Discussions With OFL
dated April 17, 2009


Port Elgin, Ontario
April 17, 2009
      

Port Elgin, Ontario
April 17, 2009



Ken Lewenza
CAW National President

       "I recommend that this council fully endorse participation in the Pension Rally planned for April 23, 2009 in support of maintaining the obligations of the province of Ontario to backstop the pensions of Ontario workers in defined pension plans through the provisions of the Pension Benefits Guarantee Fund. And further more we urge that this council endorse the recent recommendations of the Ontario Expert Commission on Pension to increase the coverage levels from $1,000 to $2,500 under the PBGF. I also urge all local unions and their retired workers chapters to lobby the federal government for a national guaranteed pension benefit fund."

Len Harrison
Chair CAW Retired Workers Executive

       "You see that sign up there "You Can Judge A Society By The Way It Treats Its Seniors". The federal government and the provincial government, our provincial government has no respect for seniors. They have no respect for the people that helped build this country of ours."


Bob Fitzgerald
Pres. CAW National Council 4000

       "This is about shifting the risk to retirees and future retirees away from the corporation and that is the attack that is on us and we have to fight that attack."

Alex Keeney
CAW National Rep.

       "This is not pensions because our employers thought they would just be generous to us and nice to us. This is deferred wages sisters and brothers. This is earned money for workers who put in 30 years or 40 years in the workforce. It's not because the employers like us or wanted to do it for us. It is a part of the pie that was bargained that went into pensions on your behalf."

Dave Crosswell
CAW Local 200

       "My Dad's a Ford retiree. My mother said to me, she grabbed me off the side and said "Dave, are we going to be okay?" And I said "Ma I'm not sure but the one thing I'm sure of is we are going to go after these bastards so that you are okay and you have to do it with us."

Barb Abrams
CAW Local 199 Retiree

       "If anything does happen to my pension I don't know what I'll do. I'd have to sell my house."



Jenny Ahn
CAW Dir. Membership Mobilization & Political Action

       "This is about mobilizing our membership. It is about starting again a grass roots movement within our union and also in the broader labour movement."

Gary Parent
CAW Local 444

       "We can not let the provincial government off the hook. People will remember that have been around a while "too big to fail". That was the cry of the government of the day that let General Motors off and other corporations in the province of Ontario to not fund their pension plans to the maximum that they were legislated to do and morally obligated to do. And damn it all! We owe it to our retirees and we owe it to those who want to retire someday to fight as hard as we can on April 23rd to make sure McGuinty gets it."



Ken Lewenza
CAW National President

       "The message we're going to give the provincial and federal governments on Thursday is "our members, our retirees are entitled to respect and dignity. But we are going to go beyond that. Every retiree in this country. Every retiree in this country deserves to retire with respect and dignity provided by income by the government."

Toronto, Ontario
April 23, 2009
      

15,000 Rally at Queens Park Demanding Pension Protection
April 23, 2009



Port Elgin, Ontario
April 17, 2009
      

CAW Council Unanimously Endorses Opening Discussions with OFL April 17, 2009



Ken Lewenza
CAW National President

       "I recommend that the CAW commence a constructive and respectful dialogue with the Ontario Federation of Labour which may lead to the re-affiliation with the Ontario Federation of Labour. These discussions must include recognition that the CAW is the largest private sector union in the province. We want to join the Ontario Federation of Labour for the purpose of engaging each other; for the purpose of strengthening our collective ability to build a movement that's important for the province of Ontario and for all Canadians."

Mike Byrne
CAW Local 1941 V.P.

       "When you are in these talks to join the OFL, whatever the leaders of those unions tell you, I can tell you that in Chatham Kent that the grass roots workers, the grass roots executive members of the local unions in CUPE Local 12, in CUPW, in PSAC and in OPSEU in Chatham Kent, they want us in the OFL."

Fizul Karim
CAW Local 112

       "I think the time has come upon reflection, despite what has happened in the past. The past is the past I think we have got to start looking forward and moving forward and building the house of labour."



Ron Svajlenko
CAW Local 222

       "All the things we talk about and all the goals we set in front of us will be unachievable unless at some point we can have influence. What I see this as an opportunity as is to create some new vehicle for us to reach out the Canadian middle class who is not covered by a union."

Ken Lewenza
CAW National President

       "It's about what's right for workers. And if we make all of our decisions based on what's right for workers we could be a powerful organization. And I believe that the mood is there to do that and with your support following my recommendation I'm committed to do that on behalf our union. And I'm committed to being part of a labour movement that we can all be proud of in terms of moving forward in the best interests of all workers in the province and in the country."

CAW Fighting Back Makes A Difference.


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