Canada

Quebec: Nine-month lockout continues, as talks at Alcoa’s ABI smelter collapse

By Laurent Lafrance, 20 October 2018

Confident that the Steelworkers union will continue to leave the ABI workers to fight alone, the aluminum bosses have repeatedly upped their concession demands.

Unions to “work with” Quebec’s new right-wing populist government

By Laurent Lafrance, 15 October 2018

After decades of suppressing working class opposition to Liberal and PQ-led austerity governments, the unions are now offering their services to François Legault and his right-wing populist CAQ government.

Canada: The unions’ suppression of the 1995-97 anti-Harris movement: Political lessons for today

Part 4: The SEP, the unions and the pseudo-left

By Carl Bronski and Roger Jordan, 12 October 2018

To defeat the social counter-revolution spearheaded by Ford, workers need to build new organizations of struggle in political and organizational opposition to the pro-capitalist unions and NDP.

PART ONE | PART TWO | PART THREE | PART FOUR

Canada: The unions’ suppression of the 1995-97 anti-Harris movement: Political lessons for today

Part 3: The 1997 Ontario teachers’ strike

By Carl Bronski and Roger Jordan, 10 October 2018

The unions scuttled the province-wide teachers’ strike not because of any lack of rank-and-file or public support, but because they feared that the teachers’ defiance would spark a wider working-class challenge to the Harris government.

Canada: Workers need a socialist program to fight the right-wing populist danger

By the Socialist Equality Party (Canada), 9 October 2018

It is the official “left” has created the conditions for right-wing populist forces to come to power exploiting popular disaffection with the traditional big business parties.

Canada: The unions’ suppression of the 1995–97 anti-Harris movement: Political lessons for today

Part 2: Unions work to diffuse swelling working-class opposition

By Carl Bronski and Roger Jordan, 8 October 2018

By organizing a series of regional “days of action” in smaller cities, the union bureaucracy sought to allow workers to let off steam, while pledging to uphold Harris’ “constitutional mandate” to govern.

Toronto International Film Festival 2018: Part 4

Damien Chazelle’s First Man: Reduced in space—and opera singer Maria Callas, the Afghanistan war, small-town America

By Joanne Laurier, 8 October 2018

Damien Chazelle’s First Man—which opens in the US October 12—focuses on US astronaut Neil Armstrong and his role in Apollo 11, the first manned mission to the moon.

Canada: The unions’ suppression of the 1995–97 anti-Harris movement: Political lessons for today

Part 1: The significance of Harris’ “Common Sense Revolution”

By Carl Bronski and Roger Jordan, 6 October 2018

Workers entering struggle against Doug Ford’s class-war assault must draw a political balance sheet of the last mass movement against an Ontario Conservative government and its strangling by the unions.

Quebec: Right-wing populist CAQ exploits mass disaffection to win office

By Keith Jones, 3 October 2018

Media claims of a swing right on the part of working people are belied by the major social struggles that have roiled Quebec since 2012.

Trump touts tariffs and trade war following NAFTA renegotiation

By Roger Jordan, 2 October 2018

The revised trade pact forges a US-led North American protectionist trade bloc in preparation for economic and military conflict with Washington’s global rivals, above all China.

Toronto International Film Festival 2018: Part 2

Capernaum, Screwdriver, Rosie, The Public and Black 47: Socially critical films from the Middle East, Ireland and the US

By Joanne Laurier, 1 October 2018

Film writers and directors live in this world too. There must be those who reject upper-middle class triviality and self-involvement.

Polls predict Quebec elections likely to end in hung parliament

By our reporters, 29 September 2018

The rise in support for the pseudo-left, pro-independence Québec Solidaire is a distorted expression of the growth of anti-austerity and anti-capitalist sentiment, especially among youth.

Toronto International Film Festival 2018: Part 1

An intriguing film festival—above all, Mike Leigh’s Peterloo

By David Walsh, 28 September 2018

The recent Toronto International Film Festival screened some 340 films (including 255 features) from 74 countries.

Ontario Appeals Court backs provincial government against Toronto Council

By Roger Jordan, 21 September 2018

Wednesday’s ruling was carefully crafted to diffuse the political crisis, underscoring the judiciary’s role as an implacable and highly conscious defender of the capitalist order.

Quebec: Right-wing populist CAQ exploits disaffection with traditional parties

By Laurent Lafrance, 18 September 2018

The CAQ is able to posture as the “party of change” only because the unions have derailed a series of explosive social struggles against big business’ austerity agenda.

Canada’s trade unions deepen corporatist alliance with government during NAFTA talks

By Roger Jordan, 15 September 2018

While stoking reactionary Canadian nationalism and boasting of their role as official government advisers during the NAFTA talks, leading union bureaucrats are pulling out all the stops to prevent an eruption of class struggle.

Ontario invokes anti-democratic “notwithstanding clause” to override court ruling

By Roger Jordan, 12 September 2018

The vow of Ontario’s right-wing premier to nullify democratic rights in order to push through his big business agenda must serve as a warning to the working class.

Alcoa workers in Canada and Australia confront the same employer offensive

By Laurent Lafrance, 6 September 2018

Alcoa has forced 1,500 workers at five facilities in Western Australia out on strike, even as it issues fresh threats against workers at its Bécancour, Quebec, aluminum smelter who have been locked out since January.

Canada: Ex-Conservative leadership candidate to found new right-wing party

By Félix Gauthier, 5 September 2018

A growing section of the Canadian establishment is turning to the anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant chauvinism that Maxime Bernier articulates explicitly.

Trade tensions increase as US-Canada talks miss deadline

By Nick Beams, 1 September 2018

Trump warned that if Canada did not agree to US terms “the easiest thing we can do is tariff their cars coming in,” a threat which he repeated in remarks yesterday.

Québec Solidaire open to supporting government led by right-wing populist CAQ

By Louis Girard, 1 September 2018

Québec Solidaire’s readiness to bargain with, and potentially prop up, a CAQ government illustrates how quickly this pseudo-left party is turning to the right.

Canadian troops deploy to Mali to prop up pro-Western puppet government

By Felix Gauthier, 30 August 2018

Presented as an act of humanitarian charity, Canada’s intervention in Mali is aimed at laying claim to huge swathes of Africa’s mineral riches.

Unions stump for big business PQ in Quebec’s October election

By Félix Gauthier, 24 August 2018

The entire history of the PQ shows it to be a faithful and ruthless defender of the interests of the Quebec bourgeoisie.

Canadian ruling elite whips up anti-refugee hysteria to shift politics sharply right

By Laurent Lafrance and Roger Jordan, 22 August 2018

While posturing as a friend of refugees, the Trudeau government has deported thousands of desperate asylum-seekers trying to flee Trump’s vicious crackdown on immigrants.

Parti Quebecois makes “left” feint in hopes of averting electoral disaster

By Laurent Lafrance, 17 August 2018

With Quebec’s provincial election just weeks away, opinion polls continue to show the big business, pro-independence PQ facing an unprecedented electoral debacle.

Canada and Saudis in raucous diplomatic spat over Ottawa’s posturing over human rights

By Roger Jordan, 11 August 2018

The events of the past week notwithstanding, Canada—as attested by its $15 billion arms deal with Riyadh—is a staunch ally of the absolutist Saudi regime.

Ontario’s Tory government slashes welfare benefits, vows further cuts

By Roger Jordan, 4 August 2018

The Ford government has vowed to bring forward a plan to make welfare “sustainable” by further reducing benefits and restricting eligibility.

As lockout at Quebec smelter nears eighth month,

ABI management demands more concessions, job cuts

By Laurent Lafrance, 31 July 2018

The Steelworkers union is systematically isolating the ABI workers' struggle, even as the aluminum bosses escalate their concession demands.

Ontario government repudiates resettlement agreement, scapegoats refugees

By Laurent Lafrance, 28 July 2018

The Conservatives' xenophobic campaign is aimed at diverting attention away from their big business agenda and whipping up racism and chauvinism to divide the working class.

Ontario government passes draconian law to end five-month York University strike

By Jake Silver, 27 July 2018

The union, which in late June offered to voluntarily submit "major outstanding issues" to arbitration, immediately complied with the legislation.

Canada boosts support for US-led NATO missions in the Baltic and Iraq

By Roger Jordan, 23 July 2018

Trudeau’s new commitments have failed to satiate the ruling elite’s appetite for rearmament and a further militarization of Canadian foreign policy.

Ontario’s new Tory government slashes social spending, scapegoats refugees

By Roger Jordan, 10 July 2018

Employing the rhetoric of Trump and the European far right Doug Ford is accusing refugees of imperiling Ontarian’s access to housing and social support.

Trudeau beats nationalist drum as Canada imposes retaliatory tariffs against US

By Roger Jordan, 4 July 2018

Ottawa is waging trade war not to defend workers and their livelihoods, but to protect the markets and profits of Canadian big business.

Quebec construction unions shut down week-long wildcat strike by crane operators

By Laurent Lafrance, 30 June 2018

The Quebec Liberal government intervened aggressively against the strike, threatening to prosecute strikers and demanding the unions suppress it.

Ontario’s Ford-led government initiates class-war assault

By Roger Jordan, 23 June 2018

As a down payment on its plans to slash public services, Ontario’s incoming Conservative government has imposed a public sector hiring freeze.

Canadian establishment rallies behind Trudeau in trade war with US

By Roger Jordan, 13 June 2018

The collapse of last weekend’s G7 summit into acrimony and recrimination has thrown the Canada-US alliance into unprecedented crisis.

Lockout at Quebec aluminum smelter enters sixth month

By Laurent Lafrance, 12 June 2018

The workers are determined to resist ABI’s concessions demands. But the Steelworkers union is adamantly opposed to making their struggle a rallying point for opposition to the big business assault on jobs, wages and working conditions.

“We live in police states, but people don’t realize it”

Quebec City anti-G7 protest forced to “run police gauntlet” its entire route

By our reporters, 11 June 2018

The massive military-style deployment in Quebec’s capital underscores that Canada’s ruling elite, like those of its G-7 allies, is intent on criminalizing social opposition.

Right-wing populist Doug Ford wins Ontario’s election

By Keith Jones, 9 June 2018

Ontario’s Ford-led Conservative government will quickly come into headlong conflict with the working class, as the ruling elite uses it to push politics across Canada far to the right.

“I’m not Bob Rae”

Horwath seeks to disingenuously disassociate Canada’s NDP from its right-wing record

By Roger Jordan and Keith Jones, 7 June 2018

With her absurd claim that the anti-worker policies pursued by the only ever Ontario NDP government were an aberration, Horwath is seeking to conceal the fact that social democratic governments the world over have played a key role in enforcing capitalist austerity.

Canadian authorities prepare mass repression of anti-G7 protests

By Louis Girard, 6 June 2018

Canada’s Liberal government is mounting a massive police-military “security” operation around the G7 Summit, which takes place this Friday and Saturday in a small municipality 150 kilometers east of Quebec City.

Toronto Star endorses NDP-led government in Ontario

By Keith Jones, 5 June 2018

The Star’s endorsement signals that an important faction of Canada’s ruling elite now believes an NDP-led Ontario government will be the best means to suppress the class struggle, while boosting the “competitiveness” of big business.

Naomi Klein promotes pro-war, pro-austerity NDP as antidote to populist far-right

By Roger Jordan, 1 June 2018

Under conditions of a global resurgence of the class struggle, Klein has intervened in the Ontario election campaign to try to refurbish the NDP’s tattered “left” credentials and resuscitate illusions in the failed national-reformist perspective.

Teamsters scuttle Canadian Pacific Rail strike, laud Trudeau

By Keith Jones, 31 May 2018

The Teamsters have provided no details of the proposed four-year agreement, let alone given the striking train drivers and conductors the opportunity to study and vote on it prior to forcing them back to work.

Three thousand Canadian railway workers strike against long hours and speed-up

By Roger Jordan, 30 May 2018

The strike pits the CP Rail workers not just against a ruthless corporate giant, but also against Canada’s big business Liberal government, which stands poised to criminalize the strike.

Windsor casino workers continue strike following contract rejection

By Shannon Jones, 25 May 2018

Casino workers courageously defied the Unifor union, which has isolated the seven-week walkout and tried to starve the 2,300 workers into submission.

The fraud of the Ontario NDP’s “left” election platform

By Roger Jordan, 23 May 2018

The unions and pseudo-left are touting the NDP platform’s meagre social spending promises as a bold “left turn” and a return to the party’s social-democratic roots.

Ontario Liberals face electoral oblivion in June 7 provincial vote

By Roger Jordan, 19 May 2018

The right-wing populist Doug Ford has, thus far, been the principal beneficiary of the popular anger against Ontario’s trade union-backed, big business Liberal government.

Quebec’s “Nurses on the Move” Facebook page bans WSWS reporters for criticizing unions

By Louis Girard, 12 May 2018

“Nurses on the Move” banned the WSWS reporters because it feared their exposure of the unions’ role in suppressing opposition to austerity would win wide support.

Open letter to the moderators of the Facebook page “Nurses on the Move”

By Louis Girard, 12 May 2018

Ontario Liberals attempt to legislate end to York University strike

By Roger Jordan, 9 May 2018

The Liberals’ anti-strike bill underscores that in their fight against poverty wages and precarious employment, York contract faculty and graduate assistants face a political struggle.

Unifor shuts down strike by Lear auto parts workers in Ajax, Ontario using threat of plant closure

By Carl Bronski, 5 May 2018

The rejection of the original sellout that Unifor attempted to foist on Lear Ajax workers is a reflection of a growing movement of auto workers.

Trudeau defends Canada’s $15 billion arms deal with despotic Saudi regime

By Laurent Lafrance, 2 May 2018

The Trudeau government is fully behind Washington’s efforts to construct an anti-Iranian alliance with Israel and Saudi Arabia.

Unifor isolates workers as Windsor casino strike enters fourth week

By Shannon Jones, 30 April 2018

Workers voted down a sellout contract recommended by Unifor, in a rebellion against poverty wages and onerous working conditions.

Ontario Liberals give boost to Unifor union raiding strategy

By Carl Bronski, 28 April 2018

The new Labour Relations Board regulation is yet another illustration of the intimate ties between the big business Liberals and the country’s largest industrial union.

Assailant charged with murder following Toronto van attack

By Roger Jordan, 27 April 2018

The political establishment and bourgeois media have responded to Monday’s atrocity with a combination of reaction, Canadian nationalist appeals, and perplexity.

At least 10 killed in deliberate attack on Toronto pedestrians

By Keith Jones, 24 April 2018

Police have said nothing about a possible motive, only that they have not definitively ruled anything out.

British Commonwealth summit sees line up against China and Russia

By Mike Head, 23 April 2018

The CHOGM gathering saw a concerted drive to transform the 53-member grouping, long regarded as an imperial relic, into a confrontational vehicle.

Corporate Canada demands Trudeau quell opposition to Trans Mountain pipeline

By Keith Jones, 19 April 2018

The corporate media is demanding Trudeau do whatever it takes to ensure the pipeline is built, including invoking the Emergencies Act and deploying the army.

Trudeau joins Macron in celebrating air strikes on Syria

By Roger Jordan, 18 April 2018

Trudeau’s summit with Macron came just days after France joined the US and UK in launching illegal air strikes on Syria.

Political censorship in the name of #MeToo

Oppose union’s banning of Fightback from Toronto university strike picketline

By the International Youth and Students for Social Equality (Canada), 16 April 2018

The Canadian Union of Public Employee’s resort to political censorship goes hand-in-hand with its determination to isolate and suppress working class struggles whenever they break out.

Québec Solidaire courts and flatters Aussant even as he rejoins Parti Québécois

By Louis Girard, 13 April 2018

Québec Solidaire seeks to channel growing working class opposition to austerity and war behind the big business PQ and pro-capitalist union apparatuses.

Canada rallies behind US in its incendiary anti-Russia offensive

By Roger Jordan, 11 April 2018

Canada has signalled its support for the coming US attack on Syria, by pledging to work with its “international partners” to punish Syria and “its backers” with “all available means.”

Canada’s trade union-backed Liberal government clamps down on steel and aluminum imports

By Roger Jordan, 7 April 2018

Trudeau’s protectionist measures, which help enforce Trump’s trade war tariffs, include corporatist initiatives aimed at further integrating the unions with big business and the state.

Windsor, Ontario casino workers strike after voting down sellout deal

By Carl Bronski, 7 April 2018

The one-sided rejection of yet another contract recommended by Unifor is further indication of the growing rebellion by workers against the official trade unions.

Ontario: Pro-austerity Liberals tout pre-election, “caring” budget

By Roger Jordan, 5 April 2018

Having slashed social spending to the bone and illegalized strikes to impose wage cuts, the Liberals are now cynically posing as the “pro-people” antipode to the big business Conservatives.

York University conspires with Ontario government to break contract-faculty and assistants’ strike

By Roger Jordan, 30 March 2018

Although the Liberals are manifestly preparing to illegalize the strike, CUPE is doing nothing to mobilize the working class in support of the 3,000 striking contract-faculty and graduate assistants.

Quebec nurses rebel against forced overtime, budget cuts

By Louis Girard, 29 March 2018

Nurses and other health care workers have taken action to protest against draconian working conditions and a drastic decline in patient care due to years of austerity.

Montreal meeting today to discuss Canada-US strategic alliance and the threat of world war

26 March 2018

Wednesday’s Socialist Equality Party (Canada) meeting will elaborate the socialist internationalist perspective that must animate the struggle against imperialist war and the Trudeau-Trump alliance.

Ontario Liberal government preparing intervention to end York University strike

By Roger Jordan, 24 March 2018

The big business Liberal government, which has enjoyed the unions’ steadfast support since coming to power 15 years ago, has repeatedly outlawed education strikes.

Quebec: Aluminum giants demand steeper concessions from locked-out ABI workers

By Laurent Lafrance, 22 March 2018

Even as ABI amplifies its concession demands, the steelworkers union has agreed to reopen the contract at a second Quebec smelter owned by Rio Tinto-Alcan.

GM and Unifor collude to cut labour costs in Canada

By Carl Bronski, 22 March 2018

The moves to cut labour costs through outsourcing and early retirements at GM’s Ontario engine plant further expose the reactionary nature of the 2016 “framework agreements” rammed through by Unifor.

Canada deploys “peacekeepers” to wage war in Mali

By Roger Jordan, 21 March 2018

Canadian mining companies have more than $1 billion invested in Mali and according to a 2014 estimate, more than $30 billion invested across Africa.

Ontario Conservatives select right-wing populist Doug Ford as leader

By Roger Jordan, 16 March 2018

Since Ford’s narrow victory, the corporate media has gone out of its way to dismiss claims he is a “Canadian Trump” and to proclaim him a strong candidate for Ontario premier.

Canada touts military-strategic alliance with Washington to win exemption from Trump’s tariffs

By Roger Jordan, 14 March 2018

Trudeau and his ministers are boasting that Canadian steel and aluminum exports are crucial to the US war machine.

Unifor shuts down ZF-TRW auto parts strike in Windsor, Canada

By Carl Bronski, 12 March 2018

The brief walkout halted production Saturday at the giant Fiat Chrysler Canada Windsor Assembly Plant, but the union pushed through the same wage terms already rejected by a 62 percent margin.

“The issues we are facing are not just related to university teachers, but affect the entire working class”

An interview with a striking York University contract faculty member

By our reporter, 8 March 2018

Around 3,000 contract faculty and support staff are on their fourth day of strike action at Toronto’s York University over poverty wages and job security.

Canada: 3,000 contract teachers and graduate assistants strike York University

By Roger Jordan, 7 March 2018

CUPE is doing all it can to ensure the strike remains isolated and does not become the starting point for a broader mobilization.

Canadian ruling elite reacts to Trump’s steel and aluminum tariffs

By Roger Jordan, 7 March 2018

Signaling the Canadian ruling elite’s readiness to support Washington in a trade war against China and other rivals, Ottawa is pleading for an exemption from Trump’s tariffs.

Unifor scuttles Windsor auto parts strikes

By Carl Bronski, 6 March 2018

Union officials called off two strikes at critical parts supplier plants before the walkouts could have any impact on production at the giant Fiat Chrysler Windsor Assembly Plant.

Canadian auto parts workers strike in Windsor

By Carl Bronski, 5 March 2018

In previous strikes by parts workers, the Unifor union has intervened to engineer a return to work before production at major auto assembly plants was disrupted.

Nova Scotia Teachers Union abandons strike mandate, capitulates to Liberal attack on education

By Roger Jordan, 3 March 2018

In exchange for the NSTU’s suppression of teacher opposition to its right-wing education “reform,” Nova Scotia’s Liberal government has agreed to changes that will bolster the union apparatus.

British Columbia NDP retreats on election promises in first budget

By Janet Browning and Roger Jordan, 27 February 2018

“This could have just as easily been a budget under the previous government,” observed Business in Vancouver .

Canadian auto parts workers set to strike Windsor plants

By Carl Bronski, 26 February 2018

That a top Unifor official should begin negotiations with a public statement decrying worker wage demands as “unrealistic” should come as no surprise to auto workers.

In merging with split-off from big business Parti Quebecois

Pseudo-left Québec Solidaire shifts further right

By Louis Girard and Richard Dufour, 26 February 2018

Québec Solidaire’s aim is to convince Québec’s ruling elite that it is ready to play a larger role in establishment politics.

Nova Scotia teachers vote massively in favour of “illegal” strike

By Roger Jordan, 23 February 2018

The province's Liberal government is seeking to ram through changes to the education system that will enhance its managerial power over teachers and facilitate further spending cuts.

The fraud of the “left turn” in Canada’s NDP

By Roger Jordan, 22 February 2018

The claims of the pseudo-left that Canada’s social democrats are moving “left” are aimed at masking the NDP’s pro-war, pro-big business character.

Canadian big business presses Trudeau to push through Trans Mountain pipeline expansion

By Roger Jordan, 20 February 2018

Notwithstanding Trudeau’s attempts to pose as a “progressive,” his government is just as determined as its Conservative predecessor to push through socially and environmentally destructive resource projects.

Carillion Canada bankruptcy threatens 6,000 jobs

By Janet Browning and Roger Jordan, 17 February 2018

Carillion was one of the main beneficiaries of hundreds of P3 contracts implemented by all three major parties across Canada, including the trade union-backed NDP.

Cross-Canada protests after acquittal of Saskatchewan rancher in fatal shooting of Indigenous youth

By Roger Jordan, 15 February 2018

Despite shooting Colten Boushie in the head at point-blank range, rancher Gerald Stanley was acquitted of both murder and manslaughter, provoking popular outrage across Canada.

Quebec: Steelworkers union maneuvering to impose concessions on locked-out aluminum workers

By Laurent Lafrance, 10 February 2018

The USW has touted phony claims of support for the workers from various capitalist politicians, most notably Martine Ouellet, a former Parti Québécois cabinet minister.

Canada’s defence minister touts new offensive cyberwar powers

By Laurent Lafrance, 8 February 2018

CSE is to be empowered to launch offensive cyber attacks on foreign targets, including individuals, state organizations, and reputed terrorist groups deemed a threat to Canada’s “national security.”

Unifor disaffiliates from Canadian Labour Congress in spat over “raiding”

By Carl Bronski, 1 February 2018

None of the rival rightwing factions involved in the current inter-union squabble over union dues represents the interests of the working class.

Ontario Tory leader felled by unsubstantiated sexual misconduct allegations

By Roger Jordan and Keith Jones, 27 January 2018

Within the space of four hours, Brown went from being the favourite to be Ontario’s next premier to a political outcast—all on the basis of unsubstantiated, anonymous allegations.

Lockout of Quebec aluminium workers at ABI plant enters third week

By Laurent Lafrance, 26 January 2018

The attack on pensions is part of a worldwide corporate assault on the social rights won by generations of workers.

Asia-Pacific trade bloc reshaped, without the US

By Mike Head, 25 January 2018

The “TPP 11” announcement points to the increasing isolation of the US, and the escalating tensions between the rival capitalist powers.

Ontario unions hold bogus “day of action” over wage clawbacks at Tim Hortons

By Roger Jordan, 25 January 2018

The unions are working to exploit the anger over Tim Hortons’ clawbacks to boost their campaign to re-elect Ontario’s big business, pro-austerity Liberal government.

Opioid overdoses killed over 4000 Canadians in 2017

By Janet Browning, 23 January 2018

Preliminary statistics for 2017 show opioid deaths in Canada rose by more than 30 percent last year.

Celebrated author Margaret Atwood challenges #MeToo’s lynch mob justice

By Linda Tenenbaum, 23 January 2018

The Canadian author of The Handmaid’s Tale has made a direct challenge to the right-wing, reactionary nostrums of the #MeToo campaign.

Canada joins US in stepping up threats against North Korea at Vancouver summit

By Roger Jordan, 18 January 2018

The talk of negotiations and a diplomatic solution is a smokescreen behind which preparations for a military attack are well advanced.