By Mel Woods, Nov. 26 J-Source (from Briarpatch)
On a brisk night in late 2020, my phone lit up unexpectedly with a short Instagram message from one of my co-workers at HuffPost Canada, where I’d worked for a year and a half as an associate editor.
“I wanted to let you know that we are exploring unionizing.”
That message, and others like it to my roughly two dozen other co-workers, kicked off a historic union drive at HuffPost Canada. Over the subsequent months, we would form an organizing committee, reach out to every one of our colleagues, and set goals for improving our workplace now and in the future — entirely remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We’d spend hours in meetings with union representatives and each other, figuring out exactly why we wanted a union and how to make it happen.
On February 23, 2021, the workers of HuffPost Canada and HuffPost Québec filed for certification as part of CWA (Communications Workers of America) Canada, with dreams of reforming how contract workers were treated, pushing for pay equity, and shoring up our rights in the wake of BuzzFeed buying our company.
Exactly two weeks later, we were all out of our jobs.