This summer the Teamsters, SEIU, UFCW, and UNITE HERE split from the AFL-CIO union federation at their annual convention in Chicago. For the first time in half a century, the US trade unions are officially divided into large, separate camps. The break up of the AFL-CIO came as a shock to many trade unionists and activists. These four unions alone represent over one third of the federation’s 13 million members. But is it a step forward for US workers?
In a matter of days, all of the contradictions that have been building over the last four years in British Columbia have come to the fore. Gordon Campbell's mis-named Liberals have spent their time in power attacking the working class. This has been met with several waves of unrest. Now this battle is reaching new heights. The province stands on the brink of an all-out general strike.
Yet again, the BC
Liberal Government has removed the democratic right of employees to
strike. From the UBC TAs, to the ferry
workers and hospital employees, workers’ rights and public programs are coming
under constant attack. Now the Liberals
plan to use BC’s teachers as their next layer of cannon fodder. On October 7, 42 000 public school teachers
will illegally walk the line in defence of their right to collectively bargain,
to go on strike and to save education for BC’s youth. Fightback stands together with the striking teachers.
Also see the Picket Line Solidarity Special in PDF format here