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By  CMG  •  Posted on  December 1, 2006

TVO boss joins call for lower employment standards
The Task Force on Competitiveness, Productivity and Economic Progress has issued a recipe for, you guessed it, making Ontario more competitive, productive and economically progressed (if not progressive). Along with lower corporate taxes and higher post-secondary tuition fees, TVOntario CEO Lisa de Wilde and her task force peers recommend less regulation of telecommunications, applauding a federal panel that also suggested less regulation for broadcasters.

The task force, which puts de Wilde in the august company of the Fraser Institute’s Mark Mullins (also known as one of the architects of Ontario’s infamous “Common Sense Revolution”), Newbridge Capital’s Timothy Dattels, and Research in Motion’s Jim Balsillie, among others, adds that the province’s labour standards may be too rigid. Things like minimum wages and overtime restrictions seem to mean that Ontarians have shorter workweeks than in other places (think south of the border) that have lower employment standards. Geez, you mean (most) Ontarians still have the right to a weekend and a little shut-eye between shifts? For shame.

More juicy ingredients for Charles Dickens’ Ontario are available in the report, dated November 2006. Go to www.competeprosper.ca/public/release221106.html.

TNG members vote to create Canadian Region of CWA
Members of TNG Canada, including members of CMG, who voted in a national referendum have “overwhelmingly supported and approved a new Canadian Region” within the Communications Workers of America (CWA), reports the chair of the elections committee. Dan Seguin, who is also president of the North Bay Newspaper Guild, says that approximately 1,500 members cast ballots, with more than 93 per cent in favour of the new arrangement.

The new Canadian Region will come into effect on January 1, 2007 and TNG Canada will have direct control over how it spends the money that its 27 Locals now send to the CWA, through monthly per-capita payments.

Ray Rudersdorfer, President of TNG Canada/CWA 30403 British Columbia, was ecstatic when he learned of the referendum results. “When I joined the Regina Typographical Union in December 1956 as a newly arrived immigrant and journeyman printer, I never thought that I would be part of the oldest international union in North America (International Typesetters Union), participate in the mergers of the communications unions in North America and finally get a chance to vote on the establishment of a Canadian district of the largest and most respected communications union in North America, CWA,” he writes.

For more information, visit www.tngcanada.org.

Guildster becomes Windsor city councillor
Retired CBC videojournalist and Guild activist Percy Hatfield was elected to Windsor city council in November. Hatfield served on the most recent Guild bargaining committee at CBC and was also active at TNG Canada. He left CBC earlier this year.

“It was a lot of hard work,” he says of campaigning. “I lost 25 pounds going door to door– and that’s a good thing.”

Percy says he promised to “listen to people, return their phone calls and make common-sense decisions.”

At least one other former Guild member was elected to municipal office in November: Adam Vaughan, once a local CBC TV reporter, was elected to city council in downtown Toronto.

Letter to editor: sorry for offending union at Heritage Committee
I am writing regarding a snippet in the October G Force Newsletter. Firstly I wish to apologize to those who may have taken offence to my comments. I was raising issues that have been brought to my attention by some constituents especially with respect to local content, future resources and personnel. I have always been in favour of a well funded CBC which I listen to daily, especially local programming from CBC Sydney. If one looks at all the dialogue I had with the president it would show I am a true fan and concerned about the future of the CBC. As CBC president Robert Rabinovitch indicated, the major problem is lack of funding. Given the current fiscal climate we should be reinvesting in the CBC. As a Member of Parliament I will continue to advocate for the CBC both with respect to resources and the high quality programming your guild and other unions produce every day.
Yours truly,

Mark Eyking MP
Sydney-Victoria

Join Rabble, support independent journalism
Rabble.ca, the website devoted to showcasing progressive journalism from Canada and around the world, wants more members. The site was launched five years ago by a group of journalists, including former Guild member Judy Rebick. Rabble now has a podcasting network and is also trying to expand the amount of original content on the site. Click here to find out more.

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