Thursday, 3 September 2009

Celebrate Labour Day 2009 - SFL


The Saskatchewan Federation of Labour (SFL), which represents 95,000 workers from 36 national and international unions wishes all citizens a safe and enjoyable Labour Day weekend.

SFL President Larry Hubich said “Labour Day is a good time to get together with family and friends to celebrate our work and our successes. As summer comes to an end, we can reflect on the past and re-dedicate ourselves to improving our lives and our communities.”

“Over the years, workers have organized themselves to improve working conditions, wages and benefits,” said Hubich, “these gains by unionized workers have often been passed on to other workers. The eight-hour work day, pensions, occupational health and safety legislation, harassment protection, and our public health system are among the many advances achieved with the assistance of the union movement.”

“Much remains to be done. Recent studies indicate that the rich continue to get richer, while the poor continue to fall behind,” Hubich added. “A recent study Boom & Bust: the Growing Income Gap in Saskatchewan shows that, between 1976 and 2006, the income of the bottom half of earners has remained the same, or even worse, decreased in size, while benefits of the larger economic pie have gone almost exclusively to the richest 10 percent of families.”

“There is much work to be done. For a start, we should: double benefits for the Canada Pension Plan (CPP); increase low income (GIS) pensions by 15% and introduce a national system of pension insurance,” advocates Hubich. “This would assist in providing retirement security for all Canadians.”

“As well, our Employment Insurance (EI) system must be overhauled to provide for those workers who have lost their jobs because of economic mismanagement. They have paid into the system and should have benefits in time of need,” said Hubich.

“Workers’ rights are under serious attack by those who control our economy. Labour Day is a good time to recognize that those who actually produce goods and services are appreciated as the real movers of our economy. Enjoy the holiday, relax, and get ready to build a better world.”

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