TORONTO, Sept. 22, 2015 /CNW/ - Simultaneous rallies will be held Wednesday evening outside the campaign and constituency offices of several Conservative candidates in the federal election, calling on the Harper Government to stand up for Canadian jobs in the Trans Pacific Partnership trade talks.
"The Harper government has shown that it is willing to sacrifice good auto jobs to get a trade deal," Unifor National President Jerry Dias said.
The rallies will take place outside the campaign and constituency offices of Conservative candidates in federal ridings that are home to thousands of auto jobs that could be put at risk by the TPP talks taking place Monday and today.
"Unifor is calling on Conservative candidates in auto ridings to tell their constituents where they stand on the Trans Pacific Partnership, and the threat it poses to jobs in their ridings," Dias said.
Dias said the Conservative candidates in each riding are invited to come outside to address the rallies, and give their assurances that they will stand up for Canadian jobs.
- What: Rallies for a Fair TPP
- Where: Collin Carrie Constituency Office, 57 Simcoe St S, Oshawa
Chris Alexander Campaign Office, 145 Kingston Rd E Unit 3, Ajax
Parm Gill Campaign Office, 2001 - 180 Sandalwood Pkwy E, Brampton
Stephen Woodworth Campaign Office, 300 Victoria St N. Unit 6, Kitchener
Dave MacKenzie Campaign Office, 654 Dundas St., Woodstock
Susan Truppe Campaign Office, 611 Wonderland Rd N Unit 5A, London
Ben Lobb Campaign Office, 579 Goderich Street, Port Elgin
Jeff Watson Campaign Office, 94 Talbot St N, Essex
- When: Wednesday, September 23, 7pm
- Who: Unifor auto workers and supporters. Conservative candidates are invited to speak
Automotive content rules have been a major controversy in TPP talks, since the U.S. and Japan made a side deal to weaken content rules within NAFTA. Vehicles would be tariff-free even if only 45 per cent of their content is made within the TPP zone, and auto parts with as little as 30 per cent.
Lower thresholds would reduce the required regional content by 24 percentage points, Unifor economist Jim Stanford has calculated, enabling much of the supply chain to move out of the TPP zone. That could threaten as many as 26,400 Canadian auto jobs in both parts and assembly.
The rally comes after municipal councils in Ingersoll, Zorra Township and Essex, major auto communities, have passed resolutions urging Ottawa to defend auto jobs in future trade negotiations. Similar motions will be discussed in several more auto communities, including Windsor on October 5.
Other concerns include rapid elimination of tariffs on Japanese imports, no guarantees of reciprocal exports to Japan and other Asian countries, and currency manipulation, as well as tighter drug patent laws, investor-state dispute courts, and major concessions on dairy and poultry marketing boards.
Unifor is Canada's largest union in the private sector, representing more than 310,000 workers, including 40,000 in the auto sector. It was formed Labour Day weekend 2013 when the Canadian Auto Workers and the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers union merged.
For further information: please contact Unifor Communications National Representative Stuart Laidlaw at Stuart.Laidlaw@Unifor.org or (cell) 647-385-4054.