Demand respect ... a bare minimum

The Montreal branch of SITT-IWW has, for a few years now, a campaign of its own and unique, launched on 8 mars 2018 on the International Day of Women's Rights.

Its title is : ‘Claim Your Respect’.

Part on the idea of ​​de-macho-izing the trade union environment and reclaiming the struggles union, some union members decided to mount a campaign who looks like him : end oppressions in the workplace, than it's sexism, harassment, homophobia, racism or even transphobia.

A Claim Your Respect, How's it going ?

It begins with an employee who contacts SITT-IWW to help them with a problematic in his workplace. Then a switch-on is triggered either meet the person (s), discuss and make a game plan. This campaign aims to collectivize a problem because the victims are often isolated and in distress (while, most of the time, many other, on the same work floor, live the same reality).

Each campaign and every reality is different.

A campaign story victorious

I will talk here about my experience of a campaign, as as an external organizer of this campaign. SITT-IWW is not a union of service but a solidarity union : empowerer the workers and workers under our mantra : every worker is a union organizer.

We have been approached by employees, Max * and Camille *, because they and some of their colleagues were living under harassment, bullying, you racism, homophobia and so many other horrors, And this, by their boss. It had to stop !

When of our first meeting, Max and Camille had already succeeded in bringing together the 3/4 of their colleagues around a table.
It was unreal for me to talk about how we unite our colleagues ...
Wow, the work was already done ! What a great meeting but at the same time with a bittersweet taste, everyone was united because everyone had been abused by the same boss, some men present, had not lived the thing but were in solidarity with their colleagues.

Together, we are stronger, exactly !

All these people were talking about the horrors done by their boss and had already decided to send a letter to their Board of Directors (C.A.), And this, in bypassing their problematic boss / manager. The hierarchy is sometimes in itself problematic, their boss being their only link with the C.A.

We had to find the email addresses of the C.A., make a clear list of requests while enumerating the charges, keep logbooks for evidence, plan future meetings but above all, plan what we were going to do following the various possible responses of the C.A..

What was our real lever ? Here it was to achieve the public image of the body.

We started with this so-called letter, signed by the 3/4 from the shop, all in keeping in mind that ultimately, publicly, the problem could come out, our only real lever before collective resignations by example. The idea being to have the big end of the stick and be able to claim a healthy work environment ! Le strict minimum !

A healthy work environment ... of course it is legitimate ! It's a right that is so not easily accessible and the advice of Éducaloi, for example, are ridiculous when you live in a problematic situation. Direct action and solidarity are the key to rapid and efficient gains.

The letter was sent, without forgetting to give a response time so that it does not do not fall into the cracks of the floor. The letter was received and the boss problematic was banned from the board meeting. next. It was a small victory already in itself !

The after ? The C.A. asked to meet people 1-to-1 and sign a confidentiality letter. The 2 requests were refused by the group. Our strength is solidarity and we learned from the gang that this same boss had already fired for the same issues elsewhere ... and under cover of confidentiality, so no one could really know ! It's indecent to put problematic people back in a position of power again and again and this, under the hat of the confidential shutter and therefore in all connivance ... ark ! Rather than change and educate, that's it, shovel the problem in the neighbor's yard putting on blinders ! Neunon !

Finally, meetings were made, in Group, applications have been accepted including : fire the boss and have a voice, an employee representative, on the IT.

Written so, it seems easy ... it wasn't. It was quite a challenge emotional, quite a challenge to keep, During months, supportive people between them and them without dismantling despite the strategies put in place by the patronage. But what a great victory to get rid of an oppressor (who despite education efforts did not change) and to be able to finally have the chance to express workers' point of view to the most high authority of the company !

We succeeded despite the ups and downs, reluctance, errors and learning, through all these little cumulative victories !
Boss viré, healthy workplace !

The culture of silence must end.

Claim Your Respect this is the reappropriation of his environment work and one more step towards fairness and respect, finally, around the normality.

well done to them and them ! Solidarity !


feminist interview : The Committee for Gender Equity

In January 2019, the SITT-Montreal has adopted a new women's committee : the Committee for Gender Equity. Operating in single-sex, the committee is open to all those members of the union, except cis men. Members have answered some questions for us to present their operation, their single-sex and goals! Here are their collective responses.

First of all, What is the Committee for Gender Equity?

C'est un comité Inside SITT-du Montréal here s'assure tout.e.s que les membres du syndicat font face here in des oppressions basées sur le genre ont des Opportunités égales access and a distinction in intestine. The Committee for Montreal kinds of fairness hope comrades gather around common values ​​to work on these issues within the union and in our workplaces and our communities environments.

What are your goals at the local level?

The committee aims to ensure equal opportunities and dignity for tout.e.s our comrades who face oppression based on gender. At the local union level, Montreal branch has a history of transphobia and misogyny that we want to address. Although the branch is not explicitly or transphobic and misogynist that problems were generally supported internally, we feel the need to organize ourselves, taking the space back and we support each other in our struggles.

And the level of trade unionism in general ?

In a broader perspective unionist, the work of people oppressed by gender is often unrecognized, as is the case with the housework and family, Planning, care work, etc. Many workplaces are not or little boxes, such as sex work, which is mostly occupied by oppressed sector by gender living at the intersection of many inequalities. Sexism and transphobia endanger travailleuses.eurs with recognized jobs, whether unionized or not.

The world proletariat consists mainly of women and a large percentage of trans people live in total poverty even within the imperial powers. There is therefore a need to create a safer environment for tout.e.s our comrades who face oppression based on gender and fight in solidarity for their rights at work, whether at the local or international level.

In all cases, our ideas remain the same. Our goal is not to argue for liberal identity politics where individual identities are prioritized no class analysis. Our goal is to show that people facing oppression based on gender are the majority of the proletariat. Never mind the fact that we identify as women, trans people or non-binary people, together we must ensure not only that our voices are heard, but also that we are in the center struggles for the working class. If we do not recognize ourselves in the trade union movement and workers, if our work is not done, while the working class is doomed to failure.

Can you tell us a little about the campaign Reproclaims your respect?

Demands your respect, as the name implies allows people to get the respect their due in the workplace. Each situation is different and each person has different needs. When we contacté.e.s for these campaigns, we will work with the working person to find the best possible solution. The problems of hardworking person addressed by gradually the pressure on the boss until his demands are accepted. for example, Reclaim in your campaigns pay, this can be done by putting negative comments on social media companies, by monopolizing the telephone lines or by picket lines. The Reclaim your campaigns compliance function similarly. If un.e comrade faced harassment at work, the committee will hold the shares until the demands are met and that there were systemic changes in the workplace to meet the needs of those affected. Since the committee for the Montreal kinds of equity is still young, we have not yet made campaign Reclaim your respect, but many of our members have participated in campaigns Reclaim your pay.

A word about single-sex committee chosen?

Having access to a single-sex chosen space is something very important for us. We want to focus the committee on the needs and voices of people oppressed by gender. In this environment that is more secure, we can regain our autonomy and find solutions to our problems that reflect our experiences facing the gendered violence.

We do not exclude people because we are the oppressors, but because we tout.e.s faced oppression. Even if every person on this planet is facing systemic oppression and patriarchy that ultimately is harmful to tout.e.s, cis men benefit of patriarchy in a unique way that encourages them to continue their problematic behaviors.

We obviously expect cis men among our friends, our friends and our allies. While we trust them to fight in solidarity with us and we appreciate their work as allies, it is our, people who directly face the oppression based on gender, to take the initiative to clean our environments reactionary elements misogynistic and transphobic.

The male frailty and pride for use by boss

The stench WD-40 that burns in irritating the airways and making us die by inches

flat in the factory tonight. Is that my bosses prefer to use it to avoid splashing during

Steel laser cutting rather than the safe fluid especially (or less harmful, at least) designed

for that. Probably a question of price to save a few tens or hundreds of dollars

year. Worse during that time, our health, he coronation. Well yes, one is the shit, we other, we are

just working men and women.

We talk with colleagues at break. It is clear that we will do something with it, it does not stop there !

Everything is shaping up for a small single direct action, that is to say close to the cutter, which is one of

three machines or hand the job, until they have non-toxic cutting oil. Almost all

everyone agrees and stands. Yeah, all is well except for one detail : The operator of the machine not want


The champion in question is Jean (name changed). John is not a complainer ! the whiners, according to

his, it's chochottes, and be a sissy is something terrible because John, you will have it

guess, suffers from toxic masculinity. His, WD-40 toxic vapors, he says it not bother him and

he is able to endure. He even takes pride tell things like that at parties

or bar. He has a man's job, his ! Real male, was !

Sadly, Jean scrap his health and suffered as much as we. Him too, will the chopper, the cancer,

not you worry ! And probably only forty or fifty years, it will be finished and be back

three months a year off work platform worse find his life ****, so it is not really more

"Toff" than us. It's just manipulated by the bosses over his masculine fragility.

John is also against it, trade unions. According to him, it protects and prevents loose as hardworking

them to progress. This leveling down. It has plenty of stories cowards workers that were told to him

by "the guy who saw the guy who saw the bear", without context, which prevent understand that

slackaient employed on the job because they were pressure tactics and the little zealous new

scrappait their job, or the inability to move in a unionized company in

most cases a response Boss and the result of "not good enough" collective agreement.

The Jean of America

We all know and all tons of Jean. It can also be Jeanne, but typically, They are

Jean, obviously. The John are hardworking and like to let us know, worse cursed the boss

appreciate people no column like them because they can take advantage of them and they will almost

thank to the. It is that the bosses are brilliant : They managed to take advantage of male fragility

and / or the pride of John of this world and to make them see everything backwards. So, rather than seeing the act

rebellion as the heroic act, instead they got them to get into the head that is, the

opposite, the act of submission that is ! John and endure anything, see self-exploit, without

flinching or complaining to demonstrate that they are true "toffs" and not cowards. how ironic,

hein ?

It's sad, basically. Because of working people like Jean, when you think, that's what we want,

because to be honest, it's true that cowards who make our job harder to do, in the same way

as roommates who never do the dishes or cleaning, it sucks ! And unfortunately, people who

think like John propagate the myth that trade unionists and other leftists are lazy and

lazy like that then that is against what we, in reality, This is not work, it is

exploitation and injustice. And the lazy and lazy, not allowed to do either. On a

just another approach : We, rather than stalling the, they are formed, we listen, trying to

and they understand why they have not wanted to go to work and made sure that they and they come

to be happy and happy in their job and in their lives and thrive. Ultimately, we are

much more useful to stop the laziness that John who think a slap behind the head or

dismissal (but no BS) is the solution against idleness.

When you look at it like that, it's us, heroes, and jeans are loose because in addition to

even have column for themselves and themselves, they and they also dissociate from their colleagues

and ensure that they and they still suffer. Short, with the world as Jean, no one wins,

except bosses. And that is why we must end this mentality then !

What do we do ?

I do not have all the answers, but I do know that our job against, when you cross a John or a

Jeanne, it is especially not to send stroll ! It is to understand what the shit or the job,

such as with everyone, crop and bring his designs with different angles for

reorient its "fighting" and frustrations.

It can be, for example, to understand that it is not against work we fight, this is against

that of being exploited. If he or let it operate as un.e no column ? He or she more

courage it, see ! It can also be to get him to realize that it is not against "team

warehouse that pogne ass "one must cry, but rather against their cynicism in the face of years of

Non-selected applications to their supervisor that makes shit and that prevents them from organizing work

as they want and they, Firstly, and have the right to meet with people working in

other departments on working hours to communicate and make decisions together that

will facilitate the job of a stage to another factory. Etc.

Because deep, Jean or Jeanne un.e applican unionism. He or she has the drive, East

often allumé.e, wants to do things he or she will be fier.e, is travaillant.e, etc. It is necessary

just talk to him and sort out his mind. Go to the source of problems, as the saying goes.

Come on everybody, it takes everyone a John or Jane and we're going to have coffee with.

Our class needs it.

Solidarity !


Max K


Sexual harassment: Why I manifest May 1

Women and feminists, why do not fail us to demonstrate on May 1 : depletion and exploitation of workers over-represented in the community or care, privatization in health and education, free work we do at home or the minimum wage continues to keep us in poverty and insecurity. Fortunately, the minimum wage will increase to 12$ next Tuesday. #Not. At this rate, we will have the viable minimum wage from 2018 in 10 years! Today, I want to talk about sexual harassment that undergoes daily, at work or elsewhere.


The tip of the iceberg

Could not pass over in silence the wave of denunciations against the #MeToo SGBV last fall. In the USA, women working in prestigious film and television industries have shaken male impunity by publicly denouncing their abusers and stalkers. In Quebec, the former boss of Just for Laughs Gilbert Rozon eventually collapse under the revelations of sexual violence he has perpetrated several women for over thirty years. It should be emphasized the strength of these courageous that eventually could, the collective determination, come forward and denounce.


There are also all these other women, these workers, who are still forced to let their boss stalker. All those who end up leaving their jobs when they are subjected to sexual harassment because this form of workplace violence is still not taken seriously! Because we said that it will pass. Because we said there's nothing we can do. Because formal complaints channels are long and winding. This is most, or all, individuals who report such harassment unleash their jobs in the meantime.


Weinstein to the boss of the restaurant next door

Stalkers are there, they are "ordinary" or popular : Weinstein at the restaurant boss of next. There's the boss who you "touches" the breasts through, the colleague who found that rape is funny, the customer who wants that you Mouse Skill him after that you have slammed the butt. Nevertheless, Women are there to resist. Through their direct actions, they are quietly changing the camp fear. The macho become defensive when they speak of gender violence we live. Petticoat their misogyny beyond and continue to draw.


This Tuesday, I manifest for all women, those that have been publicly denounce, those who suffer in silence, those who resist daily, those who manage to organize against this scourge at work and elsewhere!


We are not alone! See you on Tuesday!