2020: Keeping Up the Fight for Press Freedom, Decent Jobs, Quality Journalism


A New Year’s message from CWA Canada President Martin O’Hanlon

International Federation of Journalists

Dear fellow CWA Canada members,

Happy New Year! And thanks to everyone who helped fight the good fight in 2019.

It’s hard to believe that in the year 2020 we still have to struggle for things like press freedom and decent jobs.

We remain under assault from all directions, whether declining ad revenue, cannibalistic hedge funds, authoritarian regimes, or many conservatives who perversely view the media as “enemies of the people.”

In just the last week, we have had troubling reports of detentions, arrests, convictions or sentences involving journalists in Turkey, Pakistan, Thailand, and China. Hundreds of media workers remain imprisoned in dozens of other countries, along with hundreds or thousands of labour leaders and activists.

Forty-nine media workers and dozens of labour leaders were killed in 2019 fighting for basic rights we take for granted here in Canada.

It can all seem very disheartening and hopeless – but it’s not. Have no doubt, we will eventually win the war.

We win small victories every day: getting journalists and activists released from custody, overturning bad laws and court judgments, and defeating misguided politicians.

And we are growing nationally and internationally, bringing the benefits of union membership to more people. That’s good for workers, for society and for democracy.

Here in Canada, in the last year we have organized workers at Buzzfeed Canada and the National Observer and many other campaigns are in the works!

We will continue our progressive and innovative efforts in 2020:

  • Growing our “Building a Student Movement for Social Justice” project.
  • Breaking new ground with our digital, freelance, factual TV, and gameworker organizing efforts.
  • Working with our national and international allies, including the International Federation of Journalists, and supporting its push for an international Convention on the Safety of Journalists and Media Professionals.

Please join us in the fight for quality jobs, quality journalism and press freedom by getting active with your union Local in 2020.

And a reminder to “Like” our CWA Canada Facebook page, follow us on Twitter (@cwacanada1), and subscribe to our eNewsletter “CWeh! Canada.”

All the best in 2020!

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