CBTU-Canada Statement on The International Day of Remembrance of The Victims of Slavery and The Transatlantic Slave Trade

March 25th is observed by the United Nations as the International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade.

Between the 15th and 19th centuries, millions of Africans were taken against their will, chained in the belly of thousands of ships, forcibly removed from their homeland and brought to Canada and other countries as slaves. Many did not survive the journey and their bodies were simply thrown overboard. For those who survived, generations of atrocities followed. Africans were recognized as cattle under the law, sold into slavery and became the property of the purchaser.

Slavery was abolished in Canada in 1833, however, African Canadians continued to face years of segregation. Today African Canadians continue to struggle with anti-black racism of which the CBTU views as a residual effect of Canada’s role in the Trans-Atlantic slave trade.

Because of advances made through Canada’s civil rights movement, today’s Black Lives Matter movement and the work of many Community and Labour organizations, African Canadians have made some progress towards achieving equity in Canada. However, there is much more work ahead of us.

Carding, racial profiling, mass incarceration and over representation within the Children’s Aid Society are some of the struggles CBTU views as a domino effect of Canada’s role in the slave trade.

The objectives of the CBTU are reflected in our mission statement. Those objectives include: the improvement of economic development and employment opportunities for workers of African-Descent, as well as the promotion of access and the opening of doors for black workers and workers of colour within the Labour Movement.

CBTU-Canada is encouraged by the number of workers of African descent that attended our recent Black History Month event entitled “Empowering Our Community: Politicizing Our Struggles”. The attendees at that event identified Criminal Justice, Anti-Black Racism and the lack of African Canadian leadership in Politics and throughout Union Leadership as priorities for CBTU Canada.

CBTU-Canada is an organization that is independent of any political party or candidate. As such CBTU-Canada, in line with our mission statement, continues to motivate, encourage and support CBTU members of African-descent and CBTU members of colour who share the values of CBTU and seek to be elected to leadership positions.

CBTU-Canada does and will continue to work towards the creation of a more just and fair society by working in coalition with organized Labour and other allies whose mission is consistent with those objectives.

Join the struggle – Join CBTU!

PDF Version of This Statement

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Dear CBTU Brother and Sisters:


I am excited to announce that the Coalition of Black Trade Unionists Annual Region 1 Conference will be held July 19-21, 2024, at The Doubletree Hotel, 6301 State Route 298, East Syracuse, NY. 

Continuing the celebration of the International CBTU 53rd Anniversary, our theme is also “Never Back, Always Forward: Hate Cannot Erase Us.”  The agenda will consist of education and information that will give us an opportunity to reflect on our power and influence in the labor movement and our communities in the fight for social and economic justice.


In solidarity

Sharon Lovelady-Hall, CBTU Region 1 Director

Andrea McCormack, Secretary 

Nina Manning, Treasurer

Ursula Howard, Women’s Committee Chair        

Eugene Williams, Men’s Committee Chair 

LaNette Murphy,Youth Committee Chair  

Juanita Forde, Younger Workers Committee Chair


[email protected]




May 1st, 2024 


Greetings CBTU Members: 

The Executive Board would like to have a meeting to prepare for the busy months ahead. There is so much happening quickly and it's important that we can get information to you. Please ensure you are signed up to the current Whatsapp chat. 

Please continue to follow the WhatsApp CBTU Ontario chat :


African Refugee Support


Dear CBTU Family and CBTU friends,

Enclosed are the details for the next Shared Closet event in support of the African Refugees in Canada.

The event will take place at the OPSEU Union Hall, located at 31 Wellesley Ave, Toronto, on the dates and times shown on the bulletin. Please join CBTU as we come together to assist those within our community who need our support the most. We are asking CBTU members, their families, and supporters for donations of time, finances, gently used clothing, toiletries, and more.

Please join CBTU and our alli Shared Closet as we actively work to improve living and working conditions within the Black community. 

Please share in your networks

In solidarity

CBTU - Canada

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