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Jerry Dias

National President, Unifor

Jerry Dias was elected at the Unifor Founding Convention on August 31, 2013 as the first National President.

He is an experienced and trusted negotiator and organizer, taking on corporate giants from General Motors to Boeing to Coca-Cola. Jerry is a committed trade unionist, focused on the needs of local union leaders and rank-and-file members. His dedication has earned him the trust of members and shop floor bargaining committees right across the country.

Jerry served as an assistant to the CAW National President, a post that he held under two presidents since 2007. Jerry began his work life in 1978 at then de Havilland Aircraft (now Bombardier Aerospace) in Toronto. He was elected shop steward later that year in what would become a lifelong dedication to the labour movement. As plant chair in 1985, Jerry led the work stoppage that resulted in the current day national Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) – which includes the right to know about dangerous materials. He also fought against the sell-off of de Havilland, which would have resulted in a plant closure. Jerry was also elected local union president at CAW Local 112, before being appointed to the union’s national staff as the aerospace sector coordinator in 1993.

Over the last three years, Jerry has taken on the issue of violence against women through his participation, along with his son Jordan, in the Hope in High Heels walk. Jerry is the top fundraiser – helping to provide a large chunk of the operating budget of Halton Women’s Place, a women’s shelter and centre in Burlington, Ontario.

Jerry is a progressive CAW leader, with talents that will help guide Unifor in the transition from a bold idea into a powerful union for all.
Jerry Dias

No Progress For Any Worker Without Progress For All

Supporting human rights and workers' struggles for higher wages and decent working conditions in other countries helps ensure that poverty-level wages and brutal working conditions do not distort investment decisions by large multi-national corporations. In the end, that just hurts all of us.
03/01/2017 01:45 EST
NurPhoto via Getty Images

The History Of Resistance Continues, As It Must

Canada is a better place to live and a freer and more equitable society because of the long history of oppressed communities coming together and saying a better world is possible, and fighting to make it happen -- not just for themselves, but for the entire community and in solidarity with other oppressed groups.
02/08/2017 04:25 EST
CP/Jonathan Hayward

Crisis In Media Comes As Reliable News Is Needed Most

Thanks to the digital revolution, Canadians have access to more news and information than ever before. Public consumption of the news is at historic levels. Despite all that, and despite the capacity to reach more people than ever thought possible before, the economic underpinning for gathering and producing reliable news and information is quickly collapsing.
02/02/2017 08:41 EST
GEOFF ROBINS via Getty Images

Busy Political Season Ahead As Parliament Reopens

Federal politicians of all stripes have been locked behind closed doors the last couple of days, preparing for what could be one of the most difficult sessions of Parliament in some time. Perhaps the biggest difficulty, however, comes from south of the border, where Donald Trump has now assumed the presidency of the United States.
01/26/2017 12:02 EST
Lucas Jackson / Reuters

We Must Keep Pushing Back As Trump Becomes President

At noon this Friday, what was once thought impossible is scheduled to happen -- Donald Trump will be sworn in as the 45th president of the United States. We are entering a period of unprecedented instability brought on by a Commander in Chief in the United States who seems to make policy through middle-of-the-night tweets and headline-grabbing interviews with select media.
01/18/2017 12:50 EST
Dennis McColeman via Getty Images

Together, We Can Achieve A Great Deal In 2017

The past year has been very eventful for Canada and the world -- in some very good ways, and, unfortunately, in some very bad ones. I do think the next year can provide an opportunity to support more women and marginalized people to be involved in politics and run for office, but this will require our collective actions to create spaces and opportunities.
12/28/2016 02:19 EST
Shannon Stapleton / Reuters

We Face Fresh, High-Placed Challenges To Human Rights

International Human Rights Day should be a chance to celebrate the advances we've made to make the world a safer place for those suffering the threats of hate, racism and division. But we seem to be taking steps backwards. The president-elect of the United States got to that office by unleashing and lending legitimacy to the hatred and xenophobia that we normally look to our political leaders to push back against.
12/07/2016 02:27 EST
CP

Abuse Hampers The Progress Of Women In Politics

When women are missing from politics, their lived experiences are missing -- naming the issues and coming up with solutions, identifying barriers and revealing the breadth of experience with violence. With more women in politics, we could hope that such vital issues would not be allowed to be ignored for so long in the future.
11/30/2016 11:06 EST
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Trump's Election Must Serve As A Wake-Up Call For Progressives

It is unbelievable to me that such a man can be elected president, but it serves as a warning that the politics of sexism, racism and fear still have great currency. It shows that the progress we thought we had made on the equality of women was as fragile as many in the women's movement had been warning all along. We still have a very long way to go.
11/16/2016 05:02 EST
CP

We Are Coming To The Moment Of Truth On Electoral Reform

It's been one year since the election that our prime minister promised would be the last under the outdated first past the post system for electing Members of Parliament. The Special Parliamentary Committee on Electoral Reform has crisscrossed the country getting input from Canadians about what kind of electoral system they want -- and the message has been clear.
10/26/2016 05:20 EDT