Ken Georgetti’s career has taken him from pipefitter to President of the Canadian Labour Congress, and from being ordered to face seditious conspiracy charges for leading a general strike to being awarded both the Order of British Columbia and the Order of Canada for service to both his province and the country.
Ken Georgetti is now the longest-serving president since the CLC was established in 1956. Under Ken’s leadership, the CLC membership has grown by 750,000 new union members to represent 3.3 million workers.
First elected at age 46 in May 1999 as the youngest president in the CLC’s history, Ken comes from a family of union activists in Trail, B.C.
Ken has helped modernize the operations of the CLC, ensuring labour became more representative of the changing face of the workforce.
Ken’s record of accomplishments at the CLC includes:
- Passage of the “Westray Act” that holds corporate executives criminally responsible where negligence is responsible for workers’ deaths on the job – following Nova Scotia’s Westray Mine tragedy where 26 miners died in a methane gas explosion in 1992.
- Winning federal legislation that for the first time protects workers in employer bankruptcies so their wages and pension contributions come first over any other creditors and equally as important – that no bankruptcy judge can unilaterally alter an existing collective agreement.
- Increasing the effectiveness of labour’s political action, with the election of more than 1,200 union-endorsed mayors, city councillors and school trustees winning in municipal elections in recent years and major gains in federal and provincial elections for labour-friendly candidates.
- Pushing the labour movement to make a unified stand against the export of deadly asbestos and to push for a just transition program for Canadian workers affected by the winding down of the asbestos industry.
Ken’s contributions to labour and the community have also earned him the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal for Community Service and the Commemorative Medal for the 125th Anniversary of the Confederation of Canada in recognition of significant contribution to Canada, and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012 that honours significant contributions and achievements by Canadians. In 2011, he was named a Life Literacy Ambassador by ABC Life Literacy Canada.
- Speaking Notes to the Federal New Democratic Party Convention
- Remarks to the Ontario Teachers’ Federation Pension Forum
- CLC President Ken Georgetti speaks at the Nova Scotia NDP Convention
- CLC President Ken Georgetti speaks at the Federation of Post-Secondary Educators of BC AGM and Convention
- CLC President Ken Georgetti helps commemorate the 20th Anniversary of the Westray Coal Mine Explosion