February 2012: Beyond Acute Care Conference; Better Way Alberta campaign; farm workers safety; health care; Burns Lake blast; 2012 Centennial

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Register now to see Ralph Nader and Maude Barlow at conference on health care

  • It's time that seniors and those with disabilities were covered by the medicare umbrella. World-renowned consumer-rights advocate Ralph Nader will be the keynote speaker on Friday, Feb. 24, at a major conference in Edmonton on provincial and national policies needed to ensure fair and compassionate care of seniors and the disabled. Maude Barlow of the Council of Canadians will close the conference on Feb. 25. For more information ...

Coalition launches Better Way Alberta campaign on tax and royalty reform

  • It just doesn't add up! Alberta is one of the wealthiest jurisdictions on Earth, but can't seem to find enough money to adequately fund the public services that Albertans want, including health care and education. The reason? Our tax and royalty system is broken and wealthy individuals and corporations aren't paying their fair share. But there is a Better Way. For more information ... Hear the cheeky radio ads, follow the campaign on Twitter and like the Facebook page at www.BetterWayAlberta.ca 
  • MLA Kevin Taft publishes book that asks Albertans to Follow the Money

Labour leaders from across Canada call on premiers to stand up for health care

  • Canada's most important social program is universal health care, but Prime Minister Stephen Harper has announced his intention to abdicate from his responsibility to defend it, opening the door to increased privatization. The presidents of the provincial and territorial Federations of Labour called on the Premiers to fight for health care and reject the PM's plan. For more information  ...

Farm workers still waiting for Alberta government to take action on safety

  • Three years ago, a judge investigating the death of farm worker Kevan Chandler recommended that the Alberta government extend the laws on workplace safety to include farm and ranch workers. The government has failed to heed the judge's call. With an average of 16 workers dying every year on agricultural sites, there's no excuse for this shameful inaction. Farm workers deserve the same rights as all other workers in this province. For more information  ...

Join labour movement in rallying round community devastated by blast

  • The community of Burns Lake, B.C., has been rocked by an explosion that levelled the Babine Forest Products mill. The Vancouver Sun describes the mill as "the lifeblood of Burns Lake, a small town in north-central B.C., providing 250 jobs and supporting hundreds more jobs in logging, timber hauling, welding and other services." The United Steelworkers and the B.C. Federation of Labour have joined forces to raise funds for families affected by the blast. To read about the effects of the blast ...  To donate to the fund ...

Urgent Action

    • Centennial celebrations looming – and we need your help!  The AFL will host its centennial celebrations in Fort Edmonton Park on June 16, 2012. This event is open to everyone. We would like to see ALL unions, members, their families, activists and the general public. We need your help in developing an "ACTIVIST" database or email addresses that would allow us to spread the word. Do you know former activists who helped build the movement in Alberta? Can you provide us with names and contact info? June 16 is a chance to celebrate 100 years of struggle and solidarity and recognize the role unions have played in advancing the rights of all workers. Help us make this event a great success! For more information  ...


Did You Know ...

  • Alberta is the only province with a flat tax, which disproportionately benefits high-income earners. Returning to a progressive tax system could generate billions of dollars by making the wealthy pay their fair share.
  • Alberta has set the price it charges for its oil assets far lower than other jurisdictions. The province could collect billions more and still leave energy companies making a profit far more than is considered normal.
  • According to a study conducted by the University of Alberta's Parkland Institute, the Alberta government would have taken in an additional $37 billion in revenue from energy companies over the past decade if it had met its own minimum targets for royalty collection.
  • By the Alberta government's own estimates, we could increase taxes by nearly $11 billion a year and still be the lowest tax jurisdiction in the country! Such an increase would entirely eliminate the province's current $3-billion deficit, with almost $8 billion left over for savings or investment in services that Albertans value like education and health care.
  • More than 90 per cent of the world's oil reserves are controlled by national energy companies and out of the reach of private companies. Of the remaining 10 per cent, half are in Alberta. So, if private companies want to get at the oil – and at $100 per barrel, they really do – they have to come here. This puts us in a strong bargaining position. For more information ...
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