We Own It Weekly – Spring in the air, and a spring in our step!

We Own It Weekly logo.

Every week, OPSEU's We Own It campaign publishes a newsletter called The We Own It Weekly. It's a round-up of news and information about the growing movement to protect communities from privatization.

To receive the newsletter directly, you can sign up for it on the We Own It website. You can also keep in touch with the campaign through its Facebook page and Twitter feed.

And here's the latest issue:

Spring in the air, and a spring in our step!

Spring was definitely in the air this week in Southern Ontario. And what's a surer sign of spring than a happy, hopping wabbit?


The We Own It Wabbit was part of a large crowd of Ontarians rallying at Queen's Park for better long-term care.

The "Time to Care" rally was in support of a proposed law that would ensure long-term care workers have the time they need to provide quality care to the people who depend on them.

Another way to improve long-term care: make it public!

Click here to add your voice to their calls for public long-term care in Grey County. It could help protect or even expand public long-term care in your community, too.

In the news

Nickel Belt MPP demands a public ServiceOntario in Valley East

In the communities just north of New Sudbury, there's a growing movement to establish a public ServiceOntario Centre in the wake of the abrupt closure of a private centre.

People have been sending emails to Government and Consumer Services Minister Tracy MacCharles. And on Feb. 26, Nickel Belt MPP France Gélinas brought the issue to the attention of Queen's Park.

"The people of Valley East are not taking this sitting down. They want ServiceOntario to re-open and they want it to be public not private. They are writing to my office and signing petitions demanding that this government open a public ServiceOntario Centre to replace the privately managed one that closed," said Gélinas in the house. "The people of Valley East know that Public services should be provided by the government, not a private company focused on the bottom line."

Click here to see a video of Gélinas' remarks, and to add your voice to the growing calls for public ServiceOntario centres.

Burned by Phoenix, federal government workers say: let us build a public payroll system

Burned by years of huge cost overruns and massive problems for hundreds of thousands of civil service workers, the federal government said this week that it will pull the plug on the privatized Phoenix payroll system.

During his budget speech on Feb. 27, federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau vowed to replace the disasterous pay system.

"I see this as a glimmer of hope in a long two years of constant stress and financial worry for our members," Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada (PIPSC) President Debi Daviau told the Canadian Press.

"We told them our members had lost confidence in Phoenix. We said nix Phoenix — we deserve better and they have listened."

U.S. veterans battling health care privatization

Leaders of the American Legion are taking a hard stand against the privatization of the health care system serving military veterans.

“Privatization is a very real issue right now,” American Legion executive director Verna Jones told Federal News Radio. “This isn’t something we can sit idly by and hope that it doesn’t happen,” she added. “We have to make sure that we’re out creating programs, talking to our lawmakers to make sure that privatization doesn’t happen.”

Turkey fights to prevent the privatization of sugar plants

Political and labour leaders in Turkey are warning that a scheme to privatize more than a dozen sugar plants will cost Turkish citizens money, and perhaps even their health.

"In our country, consumption of liquid sugar is at 11 percent. It could increase in the coming periods," said Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu in The Hurriyet Daily News. "All honorable scientists say these starch-based sugars cause obesity, breast cancer, colon cancer and liver problems."

We Own It Events

Rally for Quality Public Developmental Services

Friday, March 2, 11 am to 1 pm, Minister Michael Coteau's office
More info

Kingston Forum for Public Pharmacare

Thursday, March 8, 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm, Ambassador Hotel
More info

Kenora Town Hall on Public Services

Wednesday, April 4, 6:30 p.m., Lakeside Inn, Kenora
More info