Labour Views column for December 24, 2014
Written by Mary Lou Cherwaty, President of the Northern Territories Federation of Labour
‘Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the North,
Every worker is wondering, “just what am I worth?”
The gas caps are hung by the pumps with much luck,
That Santa brings fuel for the car and the truck.
Another long year has slowly crept by,
And the Conservative government still makes us cry.
The economy is causing us many great pains,
And in the NWT, poverty still reigns.
Our children have no affordable daycare,
After paying the bills there’s nothing to share.
The minimum wage has not risen this year,
And you can’t make a living on that, I fear.
So while you are staring at your empty fridge,
Remember, the government got its big ugly bridge.
When the last of the diamonds and workers have left,
We’ll realize then, we’re totally bereft.
With privatization and contracting out,
What are our public services really about?
Big corporations are still making money,
While destroying our land of milk and honey.
And making a bad situation much worse,
Now there’s the issue of fracking to curse.
The legacy we leave for the next generation,
Will depend on enhancing our social foundation.
We need to ensure that all people have houses,
And no one should dictate the gender of spouses.
Retirement pensions must be protected,
And workplace hazards—sooner detected.
Unemployment Insurance should be there for all,
And old age security cannot take a fall.
Violence can no longer be simply tolerated,
And the need to end wars cannot be over-stated.
Every person who labours and toils all day,
Deserves respect and dignity, plus decent pay.
Dear Santa, this Christmas I don’t need any toys,
Just bring the same pay for the girls as the boys.
For 2015, our wish is just so,
Stephen Harper has got to go!
And while you are reveling in holiday mirth,
For everyone everywhere, please give Peace on Earth