Anonymous submission to North Shore. The editorial collective can’t vouch for the reliability of this fund or how it is administered.
There has been a call from bureaucrats and reformists not to support the Sick Day Solidarity Fund (https://www.sickpaysolidarity.ca/). They say it distracts from their “real” organizing and promotes charity. First of all, what organizing? Signing petitions and telling people to vote NDP next year? If you want to spear head a campaign that focuses on that, fine. But this sectarian mentality of “my way is the only correct way” promotes an idealist purity that does nothing to help the working class; neither immediately nor in the future. There are a multitude of ways to organize and take action, shitting on each other and knee capping each others’ organizing efforts is not the way to do it.
This fund is solidarity, not charity. This is a community-led fund comparable to strike funds and mutual aid tactics. Historically, strike funds have been worker and community based. When Oshawa GM workers were on Strike for 5 months from 1955-1956, they hosted shows called “Picket Line Revenue” for strike funds. As this strike took place over Christmas, they also held toy drives so striking workers would have Christmas presents for their families. “Mutual aid is a form of political participation in which people take responsibility for caring for one another and changing political conditions, not just through symbolic acts or putting pressure on their representatives in government but by actually building new social relations that are more survivable…Providing for one another through coordinated collective care is radical and generative. Effective social movements always include elements of mutual aid.”  The solidarity fund is empowering the people to take control of their fate, rather than waiting on the state to dole out paid sick days, the people are creating their own.
This is a plague, people are dying and are forced to go to work sick so they don’t lose their house or starve to death. The sick day solidarity fund is working class lead collective that is putting the power back in the workers’ hands. Rather than waiting for the next election to take “action” the working class is taking action NOW.
Doug Ford’s attacks on the working class throughout the covid pandemic have been nothing short of class war. He is killing the working class through lack of paid sick days, poor vaccine rollout and half assed lock downs to keep his and big business pockets lined with profits. This is not something waiting to vote can fix, this is class war and requires an immediate response from workers and our communities. The Solidarity Fund creates immediate relief for any workers facing financial instability and who lack paid sick days, all while the battle for permanent and universal sick leave is being waged.
“Think of all the things we rely on our opposition to do for us. Our food, water, energy, transportation, entertainment, communications, medical care, trash pickup. If the political establishment takes care of people’s survival needs, they maintain power, but due to capitalism eating itself, the political establishment seems increasingly disinterested and unable to meet those needs. If instead corporations or fascists meet people’s needs, people will probably look to them for leadership. But if grassroots movements for collective liberation facilitate the people’s ability to meet their own needs, the better world we dream of very well may become a reality.”
 Solidarity, Not Charity by Dean Spade (2020)