Introduction to W.O.R.C.

How WORC Works
Our Mandate
Mission Statement
Harassment Policy

How WORC Works

If your group is progressive and community-minded and looking for a "home" or meeting space, consider the Workers' Organizing Resource Centre.

WORC is able to offer the services it does because it operates on the barter system. Most of the groups and organizations that use the centre either as an office or simply for their meetings, do so without any charge because they provide volunteers to do the work of the Centre, staffing the phones, staffing the office, cleaning up and keeping the Centre organized.

This method of operation is especially beneficial because the groups and organizations do not have a consistent source of funding.

Sometimes volunteers are unavailable so we find other ways for groups to provide support such as donating equipment or supplies.

We appreciate all the time and effort that each volunteer has given to the WORC. We would not be able to continue doing what we set out to do without the commitment of those who have volunteered. Thank you volunteers! You are the WORC.

Continued Success

The Workers' Organizing Resource Centre has been funded solely by the Canadian Union of Postal Workers. It has been in operation since November 1998 and has grown and changed to accommodate the needs of the community it has been committed to serve.

In order to lessen the financial dependency on the CUPW and for the WORC to continue, alternate funding sources need to be found.

We are currently looking at a number of different ways to achieve this goal and are willing to listen to additional suggestions that people may have to offer.

If you have any ideas or information about where we could seek alternate funding, please contact John Friesen, Education/Organization Officer at the CUPW Prairie Region, 407-275 Broadway Ave (In the Union Centre), 942-5480 extension 24 or Catherine Stearns or John McMaster at WORC.

Our Mandate

To help establish, maintain and facilitate community organizations that represent and enforce people's rights within our community.

To advocate on behalf of workers who do not have access to a union for protection of their rights in the workplace and beyond.

To organize the unorganized

Mission Statement

The Canadian Union of Postal Workers has long recognized the need for unions to think of their membership not only in terms of the workplace, but also the communities they participate in outside the workplace.

When we look back on our history as workers, we see a history of massive struggles won to achieve:

  • Old Age Security
  • 8 Hour Work Day
  • Vacation Leave Entitlement
  • Paid Statutory Holidays
  • Public Education
  • Minimum Wage Laws
  • Medicare
  • Health and Safety Laws
  • At the turn of the 20th century, unions turned away from the concept of Craft Unions because workers realized they could win greater victories when the fight was broadened to include all workers within an industry. Organizing into industrial unions not only gives workers the understanding of their role in the class struggle, but it also defines the bosses' position within capitalism.

    When met with repressive legislation in the 1930's and 40's, combined with private security firms acting on behalf of the bosses, and police and the military of the state being used against them, workers had to use more active methods in their struggles. Controlling the means of production by occupying the workplaces was one of the most effective means for workers to fight back and win. Workers passed these tactics on to the civil rights and anti-war activists of the 50's and 60's, and now it is time to reclaim these actions of the past and recreate the idea of workers culture and history.

    No longer can we be concerned only about our traditional membership. Our jobs are being outsourced, privatized and contracted out, causing the base of union membership to shrink to an all time low. The only solution is to educate workers as a class and organize the work back into a unionized workforce.

    Unions must stand at the forefront of workers' struggles, taking on not only their employer, but all employers and business groups, along with governments acting on behalf of business, to protect all workers. Unions must educate workers about the goals of labour and show how organizing into unions is one step towards achieving these goals.

    We must support and advocate better conditions for all workers and build our union by welcoming all workers within our industry into our union. We should ensure that our traditional membership is serviced, by providing education, from Basic Skills programs to Shop Steward programs to civil disobedience programs, teaching workers to empower themselves not only in the workplace but in their communities. We should then share this knowledge with all workers and community groups.

    The union movement must again become the moral, strategic and political centre to build a movement dedicated to fighting for the rights of all workers, defending workers' democracy and improving the lives of the ever increasing numbers of people forced into poverty.


    We are always looking for volunteers to be trained to offer basic information and referrals in the areas of Employment Standards, Employment Insurance, Workers Compensation, Health and Safety, Human Rights and Social Assistance.

    Workers must be informed of what their rights are so they are not taken advantage of deliberately or accidentally. As a volunteer advocate, you could provide that information and assistance.

    Our partners, daughters, sons, sisters, brothers, friends, neighbours, even our parents can be subjected to unfair, unscrupulous employers who exploit workers for their own financial gain.

    If you would like to make a difference and have a few hours to spare, get in touch with us! Sign up now, you won't be sorry!

    There are other options besides taking phone calls and talking to people if that is not your "thing". We can always use a helping hand with many things like getting and staying organized, finding ways to utilize our library materials, track the lending of periodicals and other information and general cleaning (dusting, sweeping, mopping and tidying up).

    Everyone's contribution is unique and welcome. Support comes in many forms so contact us and let's find out how you can help. No experience necessary.

    Harassment Policy

    The Workers' Organizing Resource Centre believes that by encouraging participation of all people we are building a centre that can carry on the struggle fo respect, rights and dignity. That is why the WORC is taking a stance against harassment and discrimination at the centre. If anyone is discouraged from participating in the Workers' Organizing Resource Centre as a result of harassment or discrimination, we are all weakened.

    Sexual and racial harassment and discrimination against lesbians, gays or based on a person's social or economic position create tension and division between participants and goes against the Centre's principles of solidarity and equality. These principles are contained in the Canadian Union of Postal Workers National Constitution.

    In order to deal with incidents of harassment or discrimination, we must define and understand what is sexual or racial harassment, homophobia and social or economic discrimination.

    What is sexual harassment?

    Sexual harassment has nothing to do with mutual desire, love, attraction or affection. Sexual harassment is not sexually motivated, but rather an expression of power over the victim. It is not a joke, harmless fun or flirtation. Sexual harassment is degrading, intimidating, humiliating and may include verbal abuse or threats, unwelcome remarks, jokes, innuendoes or taunting about a person's body or attire, pornographic material, leering and unnecessary and unwanted physical contact.

    What is racial harassment?

    Racial Harassment is any action, whether verbal or physical, that expresses or promotes racial hatred such as racial slurs, written or verban offensive actions, jokes or unwanted comments or acts.

    What is homophobia?

    Homophobia is a fear of homosexuality and/or a dislike of certain people based soley on their sexual orientation. Like sexual and racial harassment, it includes jokes, innuendoes, unwelcome remarks and taunting about a person's body, attire and mannerisms.

    What is social or economic discrimination?

    Social or economic discrimination is any action that expresses or promotes disrespectful behaviour based on a person's financial status, in particular when a person's income is derived from a government program or social assistance. This type of behaviour includes jokes, innuendoes, remarks, taunting or ridicule based on a person's social or economic position.

    If you feel that you are experiencing sexual harassment, racism, homophobia, social or economic discrimination or you are generally concerned about an incident or atmosphere at this centre, you are encouraged to discuss it with the Coordinator in complete confidentiality.

    All incidents will be taken seriously.

    By respecting each other's rights to participate, we can collectively ensure that this centre is harassment free.