Monthly Archives: August 2022

“Palestine will be free”: CUPE Ontario sends a message of solidarity

August 11, 2022

“Palestine will be free”: CUPE Ontario sends a message of solidarity

Dozens of children, and many more adults, killed. Far more injured. Hundreds of homes damaged, with many people left without theirs.

CUPE Ontario and its International Solidarity Committee strongly condemns the Israeli authorities for their ongoing attack on the Palestinian people in Gaza.

We see through and we openly question the pretext of self-defence to legitimize domination and colonial expansion. The airstrikes on a captive population in residential areas of Gaza undermine all justifications.

We echo our allies in Canada and around the world, including the Independent Jewish Voices and Labour for Palestine-Canada, in its calls for support and solidarity from the Palestinian people. And we echo the calls of Labour Against the Arms Trade, which calls on the Canadian government to stop selling weapons to Israel and other nations waging war on innocent people.

Our government could begin by following the lead of the United Nations’ special rapporteur on the occupied Palestinian territories, Francesca Albanez, who has clearly stated that Israel’s air raids on the besieged Gaza Strip “not only are illegal but irresponsible”.

It’s long past time the Government of Canada and all political leaders condemn these actions forcefully and unequivocally. By continuing to support Israeli regime’s war crimes and its apartheid policies against the people of Palestine, the Canadian Government is rightly viewed as being complicit in the crimes against humanity being perpetrated against the Palestinians by Israel.

The Israeli government must stop its recurring bombardment of Gaza, end its illegal occupation and colonization of Palestinian land, allow refugees the right to return to their homeland, ensure the equality of Arab-Palestinians citizens of Israel, end the 17-year siege on Gaza, and immediately allow aid to enter Gaza and ensure the energy supply needed to operate medical facilities is not depleted.

As a union representing more than 280,000 workers across Ontario, CUPE Ontario throughout the years have passed a number of resolutions and statements in support of Palestinian human rights and has taken a position in support of the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions Movement (BDS), which is a global campaign that aims to increase social, economic and political pressures on Israeli government to end their occupation and colonization of Palestinian land and the violent exploitation of Palestinian people and workers.

We call on all labour organizations and unions in Canada and around the world to stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people and their most basic human rights.

National Nurses United condemns Gaza bombardment


National Nurses United condemns Gaza bombardment

National Nurses United
August 09, 2022

National Nurses United (NNU) mourns the loss of life over the weekend in the besieged Gaza Strip area of Palestine due to Israeli airstrikes that killed dozens—including at least 15 children. “As nurses, we are grateful that a cease-fire between militants in Gaza and the Israeli Government has been accepted and we urge it be permanent,” said NNU Secretary Treasurer Martha Kuhl, RN. “We express alarm at the grave impacts on critical health care infrastructure caused by last week’s bombardment. This includes the incredible strain placed on nurses and other health care workers struggling to provide care at the main hospital in Gaza, the Shifa Medical Complex in Gaza City. In addition to caring for patients who were victims of the bombardment, the hospital faces an energy crisis as Israel cut off vital supplies of fuel to the Gaza Strip late last week. 

“NNU joins the international community in condemning this attack on civilians, on children, on health care infrastructure, health care workers, and public health,” continued Kuhl. “As nurses and as people of conscience, we find these acts of war wholly unacceptable. We stand with Palestinian nurses, doctors, and other health care workers and their unions who have valiantly worked to save human lives during this recent escalation of violence. We call for an end to military aggression, to occupation, and an end to the illegal blockade of Gaza.”

Recent violence has only compounded the public health effects of the 15-year blockade of Gaza—where critical goods, services, and freedom of movement have been restricted by the Israeli government as part of its ongoing occupation of Palestine. Due to the humanitarian crisis caused by the blockade, the area has been deemed as “uninhabitable” by the United Nations. According to human rights reports, 97 percent of water in Gaza is undrinkable, where 75 percent of the area’s 2 million residents experience food insecurity. More than half of Gaza’s residents are children, the vast majority of whom suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder. Since 2008, military attacks by the state of Israel have resulted in more than 4,000 civilian deaths in Gaza, hundreds of whom have been children. Despite the United Nations, international human rights, and international health organizations calling for accountability for Israel’s systematic human rights violations, military occupation, and apartheid practices, Israel remains one of the biggest recipients of U.S. aid, nearly $4 billion annually.

“We want an immediate end to unconditional U.S. aid to the state of Israel that has been used to fund the Israeli government’s human rights violations,” said NNU President Jean Ross, RN. “Just as we seek peace and justice globally, and have opposed the Russian invasion of Ukraine, so do we call for peace and solidarity in Gaza and in the rest of Palestine.” 

National Nurses United is the largest and fastest-growing union and professional association of registered nurses in the United States with more than 175,000 members nationwide.