CAW President to Address CAW Council on Looming Pension Crisis

April 8, 2010, 8:58 AM EST


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CAW President Ken Lewenza will address the challenges facing working women and men as the country begins to come out of the economic crisis, with hundreds of union delegates from across the country gathered at the CAW Family Education Centre in Port Elgin, Ontario on Friday April 9 to Sunday April 11.

Lewenza's speech to CAW Council, the union's parliamentary body, is scheduled to begin at approximately 9:15 a.m. on Friday, April 9. It will cover issues such as the looming pension crisis in Canada and the Canadian Labour Congress campaign to double Canadian Pension Plan benefits, the fight to stop the closures of both the Xstrata Timmins Metallurgical site and the Siemens plant in Hamilton, Ontario and the need to re-invigorate the country's labour movement and grow union density. Lewenza will also discuss the incredible growth of part-time, temporary and precarious employment over the last decade and what this means for workers.   

Delegates to CAW Council will debate a series of recommendations from Lewenza over the course of three days. Media are welcome to attend.

The Council agenda also includes: (all times approximate)

Friday April 9:

  • 2 p.m. Yessy Byl of the Alberta-based Temporary Foreign Worker Advocate project;

Saturday April 10:

  • 10:00 a.m.  John Gordon, National President of the Public Service Alliance of Canada;
  • 11:00 a.m.  Jim Sanford, of Threads of Life, a national organization charity dedicated to supporting families who have suffered from a workplace fatality, life-altering illness or occupational disease;
  • 2:30 p.m. Joel Harden of the Canadian Labour Congress who will speak about the CLC's ongoing pension campaign.  

The CAW, along with other labour and retired workers groups, will be lobbying MPs and MLAs across the country to urge changes to CPP legislation and other retirement supports. The union is also calling on Federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty to add more dates to the pension consultations taking place in April.

The CAW, Canada's largest private sector union, represents 225,000 workers across Canada, in every major sector of the economy.

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