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September 2, 2016

It’s Labour Day: CFNU joins the CLC’s call for stronger public pensions and safer workplaces

Canadian Labour Congress

On Labour Day, Canada’s nurses join the Canadian Labour Congress and call for stronger public pensions, safer workplaces and public spaces, and better jobs for all.

Labour Day is an important opportunity to celebrate and recognize Canada’s nurses and all workers across the country. Today we reflect back on a successful year of challenges and labour victories we won to make life better for everyone.

Though we have accomplished a lot over the last calendar year, there is still more to do to improve working life for all Canadians.

Later this year, the federal government will put legislation before Parliament to implement the first increase in retirement income benefits in half a century.

While today’s seniors still need help to avoid falling into poverty, it is young workers who will benefit most from this change. Already faced with hostile jobs market and record levels of debt, today’s young workers need a new way to save for retirement. After a lifetime of work, no one should have to struggle just to make ends meet. Improving the CPP so it covers more than just 25% of the working income will make a big difference when the time comes to retire.

We must also continue working hard to tackle precarious work and protect all workers – in our health care settings it is important to pay particular attention to home care workers, personal care workers, nurse practitioners, who are too often in part-time and casual positions. As Canada’s nurses, we must continue to push for appropriate staffing levels to address working conditions for all and ensure quality, safe patient care.

Canada’s unions are working to encourage federal and provincial governments to restore the conditions required to grow and sustain the good jobs that people need.

Today 11 million Canadians don’t have access to a workplace pension plan, and saving for retirement is harder than it was in the past. Expanding the CPP will help today’s seniors who find themselves struggling to afford home care and to even make ends meet. It will also mean a better future for today’s young workers, so that they can look forward to a better public pension when they retire.

Working for a living shouldn’t mean living in poverty. Working for a living shouldn’t mean not having enough time to care for your family. Working for a living certainly doesn’t mean having to choose between feeding your family and filling your prescription.

This Labour Day, Canada’s nurses are proud to support the Canadian Labour Congress’ Labour of Love campaign. The CFNU stand in solidarity with unions across our country for safety and fairness for all Canadians.

For more information on the CLC’s Labour of Love campaign please visit: