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PRESIDENT'S
MESSAGE

After the pandemic, imagine the possibilities

Imagine life after the pandemic. We realize how impossible that might seem. Right now, most of us are just focused on the day-by-day, hour-by-hour, even minute-by-minute.   How can I make sure I have the protective equipment I need for tomorrow’s shift? What can I do to keep my kid busy during the next Zoom……

To all the workers on the front lines: Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!

In the face of COVID-19, we are strong. We are OPSEU strong. And we are Ontario strong.  We have a simple message to each and every worker who continues to do critical work – in both the public and private sector – thank you. Thank you for every sacrifice you’re making and every risk you’re……

After labour leader’s arrest, ask yourself: which side are you on?

Most people dream of flying south this time of year. But earlier this winter, I flew west — straight into the teeth of the cold Saskatchewan winter. I booked my plane ticket when I heard that more than a dozen Unifor members, including their National President Jerry Dias, had been arrested and charged while walking……

To OPSEU’s next leaders: the secret of our success

One of the reasons OPSEU is so successful is that every single president in its history has been dedicated to leaving it stronger than they found it. And I’m very proud to say that it is the same with me. It’s no secret that this is my final term as president. And we’re bigger, more powerful,……

Statement by Ontario Public Services Employees Union President Smokey Thomas on the arrest of Unifor’s President

I am deeply troubled that the president of a national labour union, Jerry Dias was arrested on Monday while exercising his constitutional right of freedom of association on a legal picket line at Regina’s Co-op Refinery. This is a very sad day, not only for the labour movement, but also for democracy in Canada. Labour……

When solidarity comes first, victory follows

When you’ve got a bad boss, it’s easy to get discouraged. Doesn’t matter if you’re talking about your immediate manager or Doug Ford – the ultimate boss of all our bosses – a terrible attitude flows downhill and can infect everything beneath: morale, service quality, and even the way the workers treat each other. It……

The century is turning 20 – time to grow up

If a century is like a person, we’re on the cusp of adulthood – just about to turn 20. It hasn’t always been easy. Our infancy was scarred by 9/11. Our middle-school years were tarnished by fall-out from the so-called financial crisis. And in our teens, we’ve had to confront the troubling pressures of a……

Eddy Almeida: Leading by example

During my time as president of this great union, I’ve met all kinds of different leaders. Some like the thrill of being in charge. Some like having a fancy title in front of their name. Some just like being in the limelight.  And then there’s our own First Vice-President/Treasurer, Eddy Almeida. All he wants is……

OPSEU celebrates child care workers and early childhood educators

Today is Child Care Worker and Early Childhood Educator Appreciation Day, a celebration of workers who help care for and educate our children. It’s easy to celebrate the workers, but it’s hard to find much to celebrate about the state of child care in this province. Ontario has the second-highest average child care costs in……

Vote of confidence – in your family and your community

Bickering children. Is that the impression anybody else got watching the leaders’ debate on Monday night? It’s definitely the feeling I had while watching the six of them interrupt and talk over one another, each so desperate to get our attention that I could barely understand what any of them were trying to say. If……

Beware of Conservatives bearing gifts

Looks like the Conservatives are setting us up for yet another bait and switch. Federal Conservative leader Andrew Scheer offered up the bait earlier this week, promising that if he’s elected prime minister, he’ll give us an income tax cut that will “put $440 back into your pocket.” Before I get to the switch –……

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Doug Ford can’t seem to get his story straight. We’ve got a deficit to tackle, but he’s handing out tax breaks to the wealthy and greedy corporations. We’ve got a crisis in corrections, but he wants to lock up more mental health patients and throw away the key. He says public sector workers should take……

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Doug Ford has taken us on a wild ride this year; it’s like we’re living in Ontario’s Wonderland – only it’s not amusing. It’s the end of a long day, and we’re all feeling a little heat-stroked and dizzy. It’s time to cool off and reset, but that needs to start in the premier’s own……

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With another Convention come and gone, I’m honoured to have been re-elected to serve as President of our great union once again. I believe in the course we’ve charted and I’m thrilled that OPSEU members have put their trust in me to continue this important work. So, where do we go from here? I believe……

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There’s an old joke about bad bosses like Doug Ford. Goes like this: the boss invites his workers for a pizza lunch. But as soon as the pizza arrives, he grabs all the slices except for one, piling them high on his own plate. Then he leans over to the worker next to him and……

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