Ontario Federation of Labour

Ontario Federation of Labour
Labour Education Centre

Labour Education Centre

December 17, 2010 19:50 ET

Celebrate and Organize for Migrant Justice & Human Rights! 20th Anniversary of Migrant Workers' Convention

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Dec. 17, 2010) - This year marks the 20th Anniversary of the United Nations International Convention for the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of their Families. Approved Dec.18, 1990, it entered into force in 2003.

To date, 44 countries have signed the convention – but not Canada. Yet, over 250,000 migrant workers enter the country annually. An estimated 215 million people now live and work outside their countries of birth. Nearly half of them are women working to support their families and communities back home.

"Global migration is a reality that affects us all – migrant workers and all workers - as well as our economy and our communities. Canada must sign the international convention now to ensure the protection of migrant workers," says Jojo Geronimo. "There cannot be justice for workers without justice for migrant workers."

The International Migrant Day Celebration Committee is calling on all Canadians to recognize the contributions made by immigrants and migrant workers and to support their fight for equality, social justice, the right to organize, and peace.

For migrant and immigrant workers, these are highly troubling times. Prejudice and discrimination create daily injustice. In particular, migrant workers are consistently blamed for "taking" jobs from Canadians and being a "drain on resources". Just the opposite is true. These sentiments fail to take into account the vital contributions and services rendered by hundreds of thousands of women and men.

Community and union members and their global allies will continue to fight for universal ratification of the convention – a task that has grown in urgency with the increasing restrictions placed on the rights of migrant workers and the escalating anti-immigrant sentiment in countries around the world.

On this day, the International Migrant Day Celebration Committee of Toronto, consisting of organizations such as: IWW, Gabriela, Migrante Canada, Barrio Nuevo, Workers Action Centre, Justicia for Migrant Workers, Caregivers Action Centre, No One is Illegal, and the Coalition for Changes, along with the Labour Education Centre and Ontario Federation of Labour and its affiliates join in solidarity with migrant workers in Canada and worldwide and demand the Stephen Harper government ratify the UN convention.

The Labour Education Centre is a project of the Toronto and York Region Labour Council.

Contact Information

  • Labour Education Centre
    Jojo Geronimo
    Executive Director
    416.985.6532 (cellular)
    Chris Ramsaroop
    647.834.4932 (cellular)
    Ontario Federation of Labour