Statement by the Minister of Labour on Labour Day


September 4, 2023     Gatineau, Quebec     Employment and Social Development Canada

Today, the Minister of Labour, Seamus O’Regan Jr., issued the following statement marking Labour Day:

“Labour Day is more than a holiday. It is a day to honour the workers and the entire labour movement that helped shape Canada for the better. This is the movement that made weekends and lunch breaks a reality. It is the movement that created the middle class we have today.

Labour Day began as a protest—10,000 workers marching in solidarity with the striking Toronto Typographical Union. For more than 150 years, Canada’s labour movement has been fighting for safer, fairer work. Today organized labour is still raising the bar on what a good job and a good workplace are. Our government is proud to work with Canadian labour organizations to deliver for workers.

Last year, 10 days of paid sick leave became a reality for federally regulated workers. Following the establishment of a federal minimum wage for those workers, we raised it again to keep pace with inflation. Starting in December, federally regulated workers will have free menstrual products provided to them on the job.

This fall, we plan on introducing legislation to ban the use of replacement workers in federally regulated sectors to keep collective bargaining free and fair. We will keep strengthening enforcement and education on the misclassification of workers and will work to make sure gig workers are better protected in the Canadian economy. On October 1st, we will launch three new clean energy tax credits. To get the full benefit of those tax credits, companies have to hire union workers or pay a prevailing union wage.

These changes are happening largely because labour advocated for them. So we’ll keep listening to create a fairer, more prosperous country.

Happy Labour Day.”

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For media enquiries, please contact:

Hartley Witten
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Labour and Seniors, Seamus O’Regan Jr.

Media Relations Office
Employment and Social Development Canada

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