STURGEON FALLS, ON, July 22 /CNW Telbec/ - Over 4,000 people packed
Goulard Park in Sturgeon Falls last night to hear rock bands Trooper and High
Holy Days at a free concert presented by the Canadian Union of Public
Employees (CUPE). Called Rock for Public Services, the event was the first of
a series of rock concerts that CUPE Ontario has planned in cities across the
province to celebrate and bring home the importance of public services.
"This is our way of thanking people for their ongoing support and
dedication to preserving public services that are the bedrock of strong
communities," said CUPE Ontario President Sid Ryan.
Speaking at the event, Ryan told the crowd "You know, just like a good
rock band, we're there from cradle to grave for you. CUPE workers are there
when you have your first-born at the hospital to when your parents go into a
nursing home. When you turn on your tap, it's because of a CUPE municipal
member. When you turn on your lights, it's because of a CUPE hydro worker. It
is CUPE workers providing public services at your schools, libraries,
community centres and universities, as well as the paramedics who provide
According to CUPE Ontario, the provincial government and local
municipalities mistakenly believe that contracting out and privatizing
services is going to save them money. In the long term, privatization costs
taxpayers more and delivers less.
"When work is contracted out to the lowest bidder, this hurts your
community," said Ryan to a big round of applause. "People cannot afford to
live on $12 an hour. They cannot purchase goods and services from the small
business community. They can't afford to buy a home and can't afford to send
their kids to university. This hits communities hard."
He added that residents need to stand up for quality public services and
not let politicians sell them off through privatization, contracting out or
relocation of these jobs and services. "Let's raise a little hell when CEOs
contract out good paying jobs to $12 an hour mcjobs."
The Sturgeon Falls concert was a huge success both for the community and
for CUPE's fight to preserve public services. "It was a great opportunity to
inform a lot of people about the value of quality public services," said Ryan.
The next Rock for Public Services concert with Trooper is scheduled for this
Wednesday in Kenora. In August, rock band April Wine will play Kingston, Ajax
and Welland, with further concerts scheduled for London and Ottawa.
For further information:
For further information: Sid Ryan, CUPE Ontario President, (416)
209-0066; Valerie Dugale, CUPE Communications, (647) 225-3685