As Black History Month unfolds before us, we are reminded of the immense contributions that Black Canadians have made and continue to make to our society. From the frontlines of the civil rights movement to the ongoing fight for justice and equality, Black Canadians have been and continue to be at the forefront of social change.
At the Toronto and York Region Labour Council, we understand the importance of not only recognizing but actively celebrating the achievements of Black Canadians. We recognize that the labour movement has a crucial role to play in the fight against systemic racism and discrimination, and we are committed to using our platform to amplify the voices and contributions of Black Canadians in our workplaces, unions and communities.
Despite facing systemic racism and discrimination, Black Canadians have been instrumental in the fight for labour rights, advocating for fair wages, working conditions and social justice. They have made significant contributions to the labour movement, and their activism has resulted in important gains for workers. Black Canadians have continued to be at the forefront of the struggle for equity in the workplace.
We invite you to join us in this mission as we participate in community events and activities that uplift and advocate for greater equity and inclusion. Please visit our event page here for more information. Through education, awareness and action, we can work towards creating a more equitable and inclusive society for all. Let us celebrate Black History Month not just as a month of recognition, but as a call to action for a more just and equitable future for all.
Information, Events and Actions (keep updating):
- UNDPAD - A National Conversation with Labour
- Learn Your Rights! For Black Workers
- No. 2 Construction Battalion celebrated during Black History Month
- Black History Month In conversation: Celebrating Black Labour Leadership in Canada
- Learn Your Rights! Film Screening The Porter
As we celebrate Black History Month, it is important to remember that the fight for equity and inclusion is ongoing and requires continuous effort. The Labour Council also promotes the “Yes, It Matters!” campaign, in addition to the Charter of Inclusive Workplaces and Communities, which aims to end systemic racism and create a just Canada for all. For more information, visit labourcouncil.ca/equity. Together, we can build a stronger, more united labour movement that truly represents and fights for the rights of all workers, regardless of race.
- Take a look at labour150.ca to read Profiles of Courage of Black trade unionists
- Check out what your union has to say about Black History Month
- Visit A Different Booklist, a Toronto bookstore, to get excellent reading materials for people of all ages to expand your knowledge (online at www.adifferentbooklist.com)
- Celebrate Black History Month and the contributions of your own Black members in your union or local
- Adopt the Yes It Matters campaign. Visit labourouncil.ca/equity
- Sign the Charter of Inclusive Workplaces and Communities, available on the Labour Council’s website.
Bargaining and grievances:
- Take anti-Black racism complaints through the entire grievance process
- Bargain anti-racism language into your collective agreement
- Consider processes for member-to-member issues
- Consider including Black equity representatives on your bargaining committees