Canada’s Unions at COP28: Shaping a Sustainable Future for Workers

December 1, 2023

Bruske: Canadian and global leaders must ensure workers are supported in shift to a net-zero economy.

OTTAWA––Bea Bruske, President of the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC), released the following statement:

“The CLC is proud to join a delegation of labour representatives from across Canada at the United Nations’ global climate summit, COP28. At this critical juncture, Canada’s unions are advocating for decision-makers to address the concerns of workers. It is imperative that governments around the world take swift and decisive action to tackle climate change and build a sustainable economy for generations to come. As the driving force behind our economy, workers must have a seat at the decision-making table as decisions are made about our collective future.

Throughout the summit, representatives from Canada’s unions, including CLC Executive Vice-President Larry Rousseau, will engage with trade unions from around the world as well as global and local political leaders. We have a clear
call-to-action: governments must prioritize good union jobs that will ensure prosperity for workers and communities in the shift to net-zero.

Decisions made at COP28 will impact the future of work; we’re there to make sure that workers are at the heart of decisions made. A key priority is ensuring that the Just Transition work program being negotiated prioritizes workers. Governments have a responsibility to provide the tools and support necessary so workers can lead the way forward to a sustainable tomorrow and we’re ready to hold them accountable.

At our event at COP28, titled ‘Workers and Work in Canadian and Global Just Transitions’, we presented concrete policies to support and empower workers as countries take action to decarbonize their economies. We will soon release a report expanding on the topics discussed during the event. This report calls for meaningful investments in sustainable jobs and provides clear recommendations for net-zero industrial policy.

Labour rights are fundamental to building a sustainable economy. This means ensuring that workers in Canada and around the world can engage in meaningful discussions with their employers and governments to define the parameters of a good job.

Workers have the tools and solutions to create a sustainable economy and a future that works for all of us. Whether it’s at COP28 or here at home with the Sustainable Jobs Act (Bill C-50), Canada’s unions will be a strong voice for work and workers.”

The CLC recently launched A Future That Works, a campaign to bring workers together to shape a worker-powered plan for good, sustainable jobs. For more information, visit  

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