Jerry Dias
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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.

Entries by Jerry Dias

It's Time To Stand Up For The Most Vulnerable Workers

(7) Comments | Posted May 17, 2017 | 2:39 PM

Long-awaited updates to the labour and employment standards laws in Ontario are before the province's cabinet this week, setting the stage for what could be a public unveiling very soon.

This is good news, especially for young people and vulnerable workers.

Labour laws...

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Caught Between Ottawa And Trump, Our Softwood Industry Needs Support

(2) Comments | Posted May 11, 2017 | 8:47 AM

Like those before it, the countervailing tariffs imposed by the U.S. on Canadian softwood lumber will no doubt be quashed once they are challenged at the international tribunals meant to look into such matters.

softwood lumber canada
(Photo: Imaginegolf via Getty Images)

But...

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Modern Labour Needs Leaders That Reject Right-Wing Rhetoric

(17) Comments | Posted May 2, 2017 | 2:47 PM

At a time when right-wingers all around the world are claiming to speak for the needs of the working class, it is vital that the true voice of working people and our changing workplaces be heard.

It is for that reason that I am supporting Hassan Yussuff's bid to be...

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B.C. NDP's Pledge To Raise Minimum Wage Sets Example For Nation

(27) Comments | Posted April 26, 2017 | 12:10 PM

A fair shot in life begins with a living wage.

But increasingly in this country, we are seeing a widening gap between rich and poor. Those at the top are getting richer, while those at the bottom face increasing precariousness in their employment and wage rates that don't keep up...

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Too Many Canadian Workers Are Killed On The Job. Remember Them

(5) Comments | Posted April 20, 2017 | 8:19 AM

Many lives are devastated when a worker is killed on the job. Sometimes even entire communities.

Take the case of four men, including three FFAW-Unifor members, killed when the fishing boat they were working last September foundered off the coast of Newfoundland.

When word went out in the...

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Quality Journalism Means Putting Feet On The Ground

(19) Comments | Posted April 13, 2017 | 4:04 PM

Two weeks ago, I had the honour to attend the Canadian Hillman Prize ceremony for excellence in journalism. As I waited to speak, I heard the journalists themselves talk about what it took to get their award-winning stories.

In each case, it was reporters working their beats, talking to people...

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Senator Lynn Beyak Must Resign Over Residential School Comments

(27) Comments | Posted April 5, 2017 | 10:59 AM

It is well past time for Senator Lynn Beyak to do something she has so far refused to do.

She needs to show the people of Canada, and the residents of her own Northwestern Ontario community in particular, the respect they are due and resign.

lynn beyak

...
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Sales Tax On Uber Says Sharing Economy Isn't Above The Law

(1) Comments | Posted March 30, 2017 | 12:01 PM

Tucked away towards the back of the recent federal budget was a short passage that represented a significant victory for those pushing back against the so-called sharing economy and its destructive impact on existing industries, as well as safeguards for both workers and the public.

The passage, under the heading...

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Federal Budget Is High On Symbolism, Low On Details And Plans

(21) Comments | Posted March 24, 2017 | 10:44 AM

As I went through the details of the federal budget -- the second for this Liberal government -- and considered the new ideas and, too often, the limits placed on those ideas, one thought kept coming to mind.

The new federal budget is high on symbolism, and low on details...

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Gender-Based Breakdown Of Federal Budget A Step Toward Equality

(3) Comments | Posted March 16, 2017 | 1:39 PM

For more than two decades, Canadians have been promised a gender-based analysis of the impact federal budgets will have on their lives, but Ottawa has consistently failed to deliver.

But when Finance Minister Bill Morneau stands up in the House of Commons next week to deliver the Trudeau government's second...

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No Progress For Any Worker Without Progress For All

(2) Comments | Posted March 1, 2017 | 12:45 PM

2017-03-01-1488384500-9056451-GuyanaHP.jpg

This week, I am in Guyana to offer the support of Unifor members to workers in this country's vital sugar industry.

For almost 20 years, Unifor and its predecessor unions have helped these workers through our Social Justice Fund and other measures...

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Bob White Was An Inspirational Leader With A Vision To Follow

(4) Comments | Posted February 23, 2017 | 1:02 PM

Bob White knew that in order to truly lead, you must do more than simply hold the top job you are elected to. You have to inspire others, engage, and offer both a vision and a path for a better future.

He was Canada's greatest labour leader; White had all...

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Bombardier Loan A Smart Investment In Canada's Future

(29) Comments | Posted February 16, 2017 | 5:07 PM

The federal government's announcement that it will provide $372.5 million to Bombardier in repayable loans is good news, and a smart investment in the future of this country and its people.

Criticisms of the deal are not only short-sighted, but just plain wrong.

The fact is, Canada needs to invest...

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The History Of Resistance Continues, As It Must

(3) Comments | Posted February 8, 2017 | 3:25 PM

For almost two weeks, Canadians have joined people around the world -- and in the United States in particular -- to resist and protest assaults on the rights of their Muslim neighbours.

Beginning with U.S. President Donald Trump's January 27 ban on immigrants and refugees from seven Muslim-majority countries,...

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Crisis In Media Comes As Reliable News Is Needed Most

(8) Comments | Posted February 2, 2017 | 7:41 AM

This should be a good news story.

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. Through websites and mobile apps, newspapers are reaching more readers than they ever could in print, and broadcasters...

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Busy Political Season Ahead As Parliament Reopens

(3) Comments | Posted January 26, 2017 | 11:02 AM

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.

Progressive voices must continue to be heard as the government, which returns Monday after the break, confronts considerable...

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We Must Keep Pushing Back As Trump Becomes President

(3) Comments | Posted January 18, 2017 | 11:50 AM

donald trump
The U.S. Capitol is seen during a rehearsal for the inauguration ceremony of U.S. President-elect Donald Trump in Washington, D.C., Jan. 15, 2017. (Photo: Carlos Barria/REUTERS)

At noon this Friday, what was once thought impossible is scheduled to happen -- Donald Trump will...

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Speak Out For Better Health-Care Funding In 2017

(0) Comments | Posted January 12, 2017 | 12:54 PM

Canada's health-care system is facing some very real challenges, and has been for some time, from underfunding and those who would like to see more privatization.

With the defeat of the Harper Government just over a year ago, there was hope among supporters of Medicare that a new Liberal government...

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Together, We Can Achieve A Great Deal In 2017

(1) Comments | Posted December 28, 2016 | 1:19 PM

The past year has been very eventful for Canada and the world -- in some very good ways, and, unfortunately, in some very bad ones.

As we gather with friends and family over this holiday season and look back at 2016, it is important to take a moment to...

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Justice For Aboriginal Canadians Can't Wait Another Year

(3) Comments | Posted December 21, 2016 | 10:24 AM

It has been a year since the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada released its final report, "Honouring the Truth, Reconciling the Future." Findings of the commission helped all of us to confront truths about the terrible inequities and discrimination faced by this country's aboriginal peoples and the...

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