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Unions and the CityNegotiating Urban Change$
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Ian Thomas MacDonald

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781501706547

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501706547.001.0001

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Struggling for Good Green Jobs in Toronto’s Deindustrializing Suburbs

Struggling for Good Green Jobs in Toronto’s Deindustrializing Suburbs

(p.146) 6 Struggling for Good Green Jobs in Toronto’s Deindustrializing Suburbs
Unions and the City

James Nugent

Cornell University Press

This chapter explores the difficulties of attempting to bring the different moments of the production process together in a deindustrialized low-income neighborhood in Toronto's inner suburbs. Here, a resident organization backed by the Communication, Energy, and Paperworkers Union (now UNIFOR), the Steelworkers, and the local labor council sought revitalization through green manufacturing, rather than a future of gentrification and big-box retail employment envisioned by developers and the city. The chapter then traces the evolution of the campaign from a focus on industrial heritage preservation to green jobs, and ultimately a broader antipoverty campaign that incorporated gender, race, and ecology. Although the campaign failed to attract a private-sector firm to invest in the site, the coalition managed to overcome some of the dilemmas that labor has faced in similar site fights in the city.

Keywords:   production process, Toronto, Steelworkers, local labor council, green manufacturing, gentrification, big-box retail, green jobs, industrial heritage preservation, antipoverty campaign

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