Anakbayan-Toronto on May Day 2014

On May 1, 2014, we – the youth and students – join all those who will fill Toronto’s streets to bring attention to the struggles and issues of the working class. Their interests and ours are one – we have nothing to lose, and have all to gain, in the struggle for our shared liberation.

The future of the youth does not belong to these governments, institutions, and their policies which remain hard as steel in imposing oppressive structures. They attempt to pit workers, people of colour and indigenous people against one another, and therefore weaken their unity.

Recently, the Canadian government implemented a moratorium in hiring temporary migrant workers in the food service sector. The tendency for employers is to fire staff with status in Canada, and instead hire migrant workers who are forced into dismal working conditions. The moratorium would seem to circumvent this tendency. However, the moratorium, like the recent changes in the Canadian Temporary Foreign Worker Program, are fake attempts to address the exploitation experienced by workers with status. They all lead to the increase in xenophobic sentiments that target migrant workers as people who are taking jobs away from Canadian workers. In addition, the changes serve to reify the continued exclusion of migrant workers, refugees and undocumented workers from accessing vital services.

Over-all, contractual employment and the loss of permanent positions continue to rise. All these are part of larger structural issues- all resulting in an intensified uncertainty in the workplace.

We have really not much to lose – we who are impoverished, indentured and displaced. We must seize and strengthen our unity.

Let us honour our communities by increasing our solidarity work.

Our call is for a movement that links workers’ struggles across national and state borders.

We call for the implementation of a a transnationally transformative workers’ movement that would also engage in solidarity with indigenous peoples.

We call for the rejection of the exploitative conditions of temporary migrant workers, whose bodies and labour are exploited by employers to address their needs.

We call upon governments to address the issues around family reunification, which continue to keep families apart.

We demand that migrant workers, refugees, and all undocumented peoples gain access to status and the necessary benefits that can improve their working, living and health conditions.

Our call is to remember that as we march freely along the streets, there are proletarian revolutionaries who cannot join us because of their continued incarceration. But they are with us as their strength and courage emanate beyond their prison cells.

This is a call for a people’s movement towards a world with no space for xenophobia, racism or bigotry.

Workers of the world, unite!

This May Day let us conspire; let us breathe; let us march; let us imagine and then give birth.

Together, we are stronger.

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