Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) - Ontario

Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) - Ontario

March 14, 2011 13:00 ET

'You've stood with Wisconsin, and Wisconsin stands with you, Toronto'

Wisconsin State AFL-CIO Treasurer Stephanie Bloomingdale delivers message of solidarity and hope to Toronto-area CUPE Locals

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 14, 2011) - Following weeks of unprecedented rallies, protests and mobilization, a senior labour leader from Wisconsin delivered a message of solidarity and hope today to Toronto.

"You've stood with Wisconsin, and Wisconsin stands with you, Toronto," said Stephanie Bloomingdale, Secretary-Treasurer of the Wisconsin State American Federation of Labour-Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO).

Bloomingdale was the keynote speaker at a meeting of Toronto-area Leaders from the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) held today at the Toronto Sheraton Centre.

Her speech to hundreds of CUPE members and community partners follows an extraordinary month in Wisconsin politics that has seen extremist right-wing governor Scott Walker trample on the fundamental rights of hundreds of thousands of hard-working Wisconsinites.

Fred Hahn, President of the CUPE Ontario, said that while the billionaire-backed Governor could cause "untold harm that goes well beyond the borders of Wisconsin, the overwhelming show of solidarity by people from all walks of life against this destructive agenda points a way forward for all of us committed to building better communities."

"We can see the tide turning in Wisconsin. People are understanding that the folks who pick up the trash, teach your kids and care for the sick aren't the enemy—we're your neighbours, your fellow citizens who are committed to strengthening our social fabric, not tearing it apart," Hahn added.

Just two days prior to her Toronto speech, 100,000 Wisconsinites rallied in the Capital city of Madison with a pledge to shift their focus from demonstrating to mobilizing with an eye towards the ballot box.

"We've seen what happens in Wisconsin when people from all walks of life are galvanized into action. But what we've seen thus far can't compare to what can happen if people are galvanized and mobilized to work together to build and strengthen communities. We need to work with our neighbours and friends to build the city we all need between elections-- but we must also trust that most effective tool – the ballot box," said Hahn.

In Canada, a Federal Election is expected within the next two months, and Ontarians will go to the polls in early October.

Contact Information

  • CUPE Ontario
    Fred Hahn
    President
    416-540-3979
    or
    CUPE Communications
    Kevin Wilson
    416-821-6641