As she walked around the Halifax Common surrounded by union brothers and sisters yesterday, Ivy Shaw proudly wore a T-shirt featuring Rosie the Riveter, the unmistakable icon for working women across the continent since the Second World War.
“It says, ‘A woman’s place is in her union,” Shaw said.
“It’s important that women are involved with their local unions,” said Shaw, who is herself a member of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers and is secretary-treasurer of the Nova Scotia Federation of Labour. “Predominantly, women have been paid a lot less than men over the years, for doing the same work.”
In fact, Halifax-Dartmouth and District Labour Council president Kyle Buott pointed out during his speech yesterday that female workers still only typically make 75 per cent of what their male counterparts earn.
Sackville-Eastern Shore MP Peter Stoffer, one of several New Democrats who made an appearance, said during yesterday’s march that in addition to lobbying for improvements, it’s also important to pay tribute to those who have fought hard for the benefits workers enjoy today.
“It allows us all to participate in what we call the Canadian dream,” he said. “The ability to work hard, the ability to look after your families and the ability to work in a safe and healthy environment.”
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