History of Local 40
The Canadian Textile and Chemical Union was formed under the leadership of Madeleine Parent and Kent Rowley in 1952, with the breakaway from an American textile union, going on to become a member of the Confederation of Canadian Unions. The CTCU was one of the first Canadian unions to call for equal pay for work of equal value and lead high profile strikes focusing on the rights of women and immigrant workers including Texpack, Artistic Woodwork, McGregor Hosiery Mills, and Puretex Knitting.
The CTCU represented both manufacturing and service workers but lost much of its membership when textiles became an early victim of free trade negotiations under NAFTA. In June of 1992, the 800 members of the CTCU merged with CAW to become Local 40 and home to the CAW Workers Centre. Following the merger, Local 40 grew dramatically both in terms of organized workplaces and membership size.
In 2012, CAW Local 1000 (formerly of the Retail Wholesale Canada Union) which was comprised of around 600 members largely working in the retail and logistics sectors merged with Local 40. As Local 1000 and Local 40 had been working together on a variety of community based events the amalgamation made sense ideologically and logistically, resulting in a consolidation of resources and minimization of overhead.
As a result of the 2013 merger of the Canadian Auto Workers and Communications, Energy, and Paperworkers unions, Unifor Local 40 was born making it a member of the largest private sector union in Canada representing members in a wide variety of sectors and industries. An embodiment of diversity, Local 40 represents members in the Toronto area and beyond employed in manufacturing, health care, education, social services, auto services, retail, logistics, and protection services.