Premier Wynne Receives 1,100 Requests to Defend Young Workers

TORONTO, April 15 2014 /CNW/ - More than 1,100 letters have been sent to Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne in the last week, calling on the premier to stand up for young workers under attack by multinational corporations.

The letter-writing campaign was launched last week by the online news service LabourStart, citing the case of striking employees at the Crown Holdings factory in Toronto.

Crown, one of the world's largest manufacturers of food and beverage cans, provoked a strike at the Toronto plant last September with demands for huge concessions.

U.S.-based Crown is the latest multinational trying to impose a two-tier job structure to permanently relegate Ontario's young workers to low-wage survival jobs.

"It is time for you to stand on the side of Ontario workers and the next generation and not multinational corporations," state the letters delivered to Wynne.

For eight months Crown has refused to negotiate a fair deal with its Toronto employees. Crown has prolonged the strike by making progressively worse contract offers while recruiting replacement workers to try to run the Toronto plant.

The striking employees, members of the United Steelworkers (USW), are standing up for the next generation of workers, said USW representative Lawrence Hay.

The Toronto employees helped Crown earn huge profits and received a corporate award for their productivity, efficiency and safety record, Hay noted.

"It's time for the Premier to stand up for young workers," he said. "By remaining silent, Premier Wynne emboldens other profitable corporations to attack young workers and foster a low-wage economy in Ontario."

For more information on the Toronto workers' struggle, visit www.takebacksnomore.ca

SOURCE United Steelworkers (USW)

For further information: Joe Drexler, USW Strategic Campaigns, 416-544-6009, 416-434-7907, jdrexler@usw.ca; Lawrence Hay, USW Staff Representative, 416-807-8792, lhay@usw.ca; Bob Gallagher, USW Communications, 416-544-5966, 416-434-2221, bgallagher@usw.ca