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’.
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
Claim Your Respect, How's it going ?
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).
campaign and every reality is different.
A campaign story
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
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 !
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
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.
we are stronger, exactly !
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..
was our real lever ? Here it was to achieve the public image of
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 !
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.
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 !
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 !
meetings were made, in Group, applications have been accepted including :
fire the boss and have a voice, an employee representative, on the
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 !
succeeded despite the ups and downs, reluctance, errors and
learning, through all these little cumulative victories !
Boss viré, healthy workplace !
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
The 8 March, during the international day of struggle for women's rights, Industrial Union of Workers and Workers (SITT-IWW) was the demonstration against capitalism and patriarchy, organized by Women of Diverse Origins. Several hundred people gathered to protest against the impoverishment of women, against war and against sexual violence. On this occasion, the campaign "Reclaim your respect!"SITT-the IWW was launched!
During the event “Women standing against capitalism and patriarchy!” the 8 mars 2018. Photo credit : Cedric Martin
To make visible everyday sexism and report harassment at work, women were asked to share their experience on plates that formed a collective fleeting wall. The testimonies of abuse and sexism were many, to the point where a rope had to be added. We should not have to endure comments like " You smile not? You have your period or what? "In our workplaces or" I hope you're not planning to have children, I want me to have to dealer with maternity leave ' in job interview. The difficulty in denouncing abuses and violence experienced at work is even greater for women without status of their extremely precarious and invisible status, as evidenced by the one of the suspended plates.
Harassment in the Workplace, it is racist, sexist, homophobic or a combination of oppression, should not be tolerated whatever its form : degrading comments, abuse of power, blackmail, termination, touching, etc. The campaign "Reclaim your respect!"Is there to counter all these forms of direct action and organization in the workplace. In the wake of the wave of recent months #MoiAussi, this campaign is more than necessary!