Human Rights are Worker Rights (One Week)

This week-long program is critical for leadership and activists, as we learn together how to build a strong, united union committed to social justice. Racism, homophobia, sexism, disability prejudice and other forms of discrimination divide us as workers and weaken our union. This course asks each of us to take on the challenge of working toward real equality, by first understanding how oppression works, by examining where, how and why discrimination occurs, and then by debating, and committing to strategies for change. Participants will become familiar with CAW structures, resources, education programs and networks for advancing human rights and equality struggles in the workplace. Participants are provided with a Human Rights Tool Kit and are asked to consider tough topics such as harassment and employment equity, and to engage each other in challenging conversations. The course includes a focus on the role of allies and shows how human rights struggles can strengthen the union.

Course objectives are to:

  • Explore human rights issues from a working-class perspective;
  • Develop leadership confidence on human rights issues;
  • Become familiar with union resources and tools for resolving discrimination and harassment;
  • Think critically and analyze our beliefs and ideas about race, gender, age, ethnicity, religion, disability, sexual orientation, as well as about other categories that are used to divide workers;
  • Deepen our understanding of the role that governments and corporations play in exploiting 'difference';
  • Discuss concrete strategies for fighting back;
  • Demonstrate that taking on human rights issues strengthens our union;
  • Build our commitment to a broader social justice movement.

This course is also available on a cost-sharing basis (50-50) between Local Unions and the National Union (as per the 1994 Constitutional Convention resolution) when it is requested by local unions and delivered locally.

For more information, contact the Human Rights Department or your local union.


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