Current Young Workers Committee Members
Chair: Teryn Burgess
(Young Worker VP) - Email Me
The committee is seeking full representation from all affiliates. For further information or to appoint your affiliate representative, please contact the Young Worker Vice-President.
Young Worker Committee Brochure
Winning Entry to the Young Workers' Poster Contest
Think You Know About Labour Standards?
What Do We Do?
The labour movement consists of diverse workers and experiences. These working people join together to improve working conditions and to demand dignity and respect for all people. As young workers within the labour movement, we work to ensure that young people’s voices are heard and that their rights are respected.
The SFL Young Workers Committee meets to discuss what’s going on in our workplaces, unions, and communities and what we can do to challenge the exploitation of young workers and educate youth on their rights.
We also work with veteran trade unionists to ensure that young workers’ perspectives are included in all aspects of their union and the labour movement.
Ready for Work Program
This Occupational Health & Safety presentation is used to educate young workers about their health & safety rights on the job, including:
- the right to know
- the right to participate
- the right to refuse unsafe work.
Ready for Work is delivered by trade unionists, who supplement the slideshow with true stories of young people who were injured on the job.
This presentation is useful for young people who are about to enter or are currently in the workforce.
Please contact the SFL Ready for Work Coordinator to arrange a presentation.
Why Do We Need Unions?
We need unions because they are one of the few ways that workers can have a say on the job and influence society. Our society is democratic to a degree, but it is not set up to respond to the average worker's concerns and daily life. When people come together with a common goal in mind, they are far more powerful than when they try to reach goals by themselves. When working people act together they have a better chance of getting what they need at work, from government and in their communities.
Some of the minimum benefits you now receive from an employer result from the fights unions have won for their members' wages, benefits and working conditions over the last 1000 years.
Through "collective bargaining" and by lobbying governments with other members of the community, unions were able to force governments to set minimum standards of pay, hours of work, overtime, holiday pay and health and safety regulations. This resulted in minimum standards' legislation in every provincial, territorial and federal area of work. Unions were also involved in developing human rights gains and legislation. These gains are now under attack by right wing governments across the country.
The following standards have become the basic minimum rights within many workplaces and are now required by law in most provinces. These standards exist because of the bargaining gains that unions achieved over the years and because unions have lobbied for employment standards law. These standards include:
- minimum wage laws
- hours of work (daily and weekly)
- overtime pay
- vacation pay
- basic health and safety rules
- workers' compensation
- basic anti-discriminatory laws in human rights legislation
- severance pay
- unemployment insurance benefits
- maternity and parental leave benefits
- pension benefits
(For information about your province's or territory's Minimum Employment Standards, contact your local Federation of Labour or the Ministry of Labour.)