Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Canada’s unions applaud today’s announcement by the federal government to strike a task force on “Just Transition” for coal workers. The Just Transition Task Force for Canadian Coal-Power Workers and Communities has been struck to draft a plan to support affected workers and communities as Canada moves to phase-out coal-fired power. CLC President Hassan Yussuff has been asked to lead the Task Force, along with New Brunswick Conservationist Lois Corbett.

“The world is watching. By launching this task force, Canada has the opportunity to set an international example on how to implement progressive policy to reduce emissions while keeping people and communities at the centre,” said CLC President and Task Force Co-chair Hassan Yussuff.

Workers will have a strong voice at the table thanks to a significant labour presence on the 11-member task force. Yussuff will be joined by five representatives from Canadian unions who can speak to the concerns of coal workers and their families.

“People affected by plans to phase-out coal power must be at the heart of this transition. This task force will help ensure that the needs of workers and communities – as well as Canada’s environmental goals – are met,” said Yussuff.

Yussuff commended Environment Minister Catherine McKenna on her personal commitment to the creation of this task force. The Task Force will develop recommendations to present to Minister McKenna to influence Canada’s plans to phase-out coal power. This would include helping workers find comparable employment through retraining programs and resources to help affected communities transition their local economy.

“I look forward to working collaboratively with the government and the members of the Task Force to develop effective and practical solutions to support Canada’s transition for coal power workers and communities,” said Yussuff.