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Canada (508,936)
LABRST 1A03 (339)
David Goutor (304)
Lecture 14

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Labour Studies
David Goutor

Lecture 14- The Workers Revolt Part 1 October 30, 2013 Mounting Tension - Spanish influenza – flu pandemic, killed may people, hit Canada hard as well as workplaces because they didn’t’ want to shut down their business, but many workers were sick. April 1919 they cancelled the Stanley Cup Final because things were so bad. - New Depression- as soon as the war ends, the economy goes under. People get laid off and the government stops spending money. Veterans start coming back accepting work again. All of these things hit the economy very hard. The government remains scared and does not take off the war measures act. They still feel there is an emergency because of labour issues. Massive strike wave, in the mines and factories. There is strikes everywhere. The strikes are not about just getting a raise, they are about more than that. Workers are very upset. - Government Controls Growing Strike Wave - Shop-floor anger - Workers not just mad about wages, they are angry about lots of things - Lots of strikes everywhere Western Canada Labour Conference - March 1919 - Planning for own radical organization - Planned for widespread strikes, and mostly for the One Big Union Plans for the OBU - One Big Union - Radicals wanted this - Everyone under one union - By May of 1919 many people even conservatives say that there are serious threats of labour revolts and unrest here - The one big union never really gets off the ground Lecture 15- The Workers Revolt Part 2 October 30, 2013 Winnipeg General Strike - Local problems (building trades, employers were very hostile to trade unions, they wanted to keep unions out. Constant tensions during the war because of these issues as well. Building trades were having an especially hard time. There was a strike around the metal business, and in May of 1919 the trades council decides to form a committee for a support strike for the building trades. May 15 1919, 11 am, the strike call goes out. The response is crazy. Almost all workers walk off the jobs sites and electricity goes out. The police and fireman all join the strike. Atleast 30,000 workers join the General Strike. Winnipeg is now a ghost town because everyone is on strike) - Strike Committee Decisions- the strike committee are the only people in charge of things (people would go to them and ask them to turn the electricity back on, they are the only authority in the city) • Order- they had to make a decision about how to maintain order • Essential services – they had to make a decision on essential services like electricity and such in order for people
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