Looking back on last year's 4/15, the successes have been nothing short of amazing. Alberta, California, and New York State join the cities of Seattle and New York in pledging a $15/hour minimum wage. The two US states are moving way too slowly, but the fact that $15 is on the agenda is very significant.
To me, what is most exciting about this movement is that workers themselves have made this a national and international issue. Low-wage earners have organized themselves, and worked both social and traditional media with great energy and skill. You'd be hard-pressed to find a media outlet, city blog, or talk show that hasn't covered the strikes and demonstrations on a regular basis. When the people lead, the elected officials follow.
In Ontario, the call is 15 and Fairness, demanding paid sick time for all, wages and hours people can actually live on, and employment standards that apply to everyone, not just the dwindling few who still have traditional full-time employment.
My own Fight For 15 continues, as CUPE Local 1989, Mississauga Library Workers Union, fights for a fair wage for our pages, our lowest paid members. The struggles of our pages should be an embarrassment to the City of Mississauga.
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