Contact us at tbiwsg@gmail.com if you want to join us for these sessions!


Our guest speaker this week will be Gerry LeBlanc and Jessica Montgomery from USW who will speak to the health and safety struggles, past and present, as well as the kind of cases that they work on what they are tackling  at the WSIB.  This will include a look at some of the occ diseases that they are facing. 

TUESDAY, APRIL 6, 10:00-12:00

Al Etmanski, parent advocate for persons with disabilities and Rabia Khedr, co-chair of the Canadian Disability Alliance Initiative, will join us at 11 am until 12:30 pm.  Our session will still begin at 10 am.  Last fall in the Throne Speech the federal government promised to create a Canadian Disability Benefit. This is the first time any national government anywhere in the world has committed to address the poverty experienced by disabled people.  In response a group of disabled people have created the Canadian Disability Benefit Initiative. Our goal is to hold our government to account and to make sure we end the poverty experienced by disabled Canadians once and for all. This presentation will discuss the 3 core actions that need to take place to make sure the disabled community takes advantage of this exciting and unprecedented opportunity.

TUESDAY MARCH 30, 10:00-12:00:

Sue James and Bob DeMatteo who will be joining us to speak to the GE Project the WSIB challenges with Occ Disease and how can we come together to implement strategies going forward.  Sue shared – I worked at General Electric in Peterborough from 1974 – 2014. In Nov. of 2015 I joined the Peterborough Coalition fighting for justice for workers and families affected by multiple chemicals and carcinogens. I was a proud participant in the GE Retrospective Profiling report and now chair the newly named Peterborough Occupational Disease Action Committee (PODAC).  Joining our fight here in Peterborough is the Ventra/Pebra Plastics Plant who also have put out their own retrospective profile report and were also part of the 2004 OHCOW intake clinic that was put on.  Bob has many years experience in the Health & Safety field and has tirelessly given his time as an activist. He was the Health & Safety coordinator with OPSEU union and served time on the Occupational Disease Panel and sits on the board of OHCOW. Bob and his wife are now working on their 3rd Retrospective Exposure Profile Report for Neelon Castings in Sudbury after finishing the Peterborough reports of GE and Ventra/Pebra Plastics.

TUESDAY MARCH 23, 10:00-12:00:

Moses Sheppard, retired USW rep who started the campaign for lung cancer for gold miners in Timmins and went on to win around $326M for the widows and their families, will be joined by Janice Martell.  They will share experiences and their lessons learned.

TUESDAY MARCH 16, 10:00-12:00:

From 2002 to 2004, over 400 construction workers were exposed to toxic fumes while adding on to the Paper Mill in Dryden Ontario.  Many of these workers became ill and some have since died.  Join us to find out more …   Thunder Bay Injured Workers is inviting you to our scheduled Zoom meeting. Our pro bono students will be presenting their research findings on the Dryden Paper Mill Recovery Boiler#4 exposures which occurred from 2002 thru 2004.


TUESDAY MARCH 16, at 1:00 PM

We’re calling it an “End of Winter Warmup”, and it will feature greetings from ONIWG, IWC, and a handful of other injured worker groups, as well as some songs, stories, and social time.

Tuesday, Feb 23.21

Catherine Fenech, Injured worker and ONIWG Vice President for Peel Region, will be discussing how she founded International Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) Awareness Day, now in its 22th year.  RSI Day is officially marked on February 29th or the last day of February each year in countries across the globe.  Catherine will discuss how her struggles to get recognition,  treatment, compensation and accommodation of her injuries led to an international event in the hopes to prevent others from suffering as she had.  Learn how this event took off in the days before social media when computers were less common than they are today and what lessons it offers for organizing today.

Tuesday, October 13, IW session at 10 am:

With guests from the Injured Workers Community Legal Clinic – “WSIB benefits and services, why should they be semi- secret?”

Injured Workers Community Legal Clinic staff, Orlando Buonastella, Rebecca Lok and David Newberry, will lead our injured workers session on Tuesday, October 13th.  We will look at benefits and services that some injured workers may not know about, such as maintenance therapy, clothing allowances, travel allowances, interpretation services and entitlement to re-assessments when the injury gets worse.  Below is a link that you can take a look at.


Tuesday, October 5, IW session at 10 am.

Dorothy Wigmore, Occupational health specialist (hygiene, ergonomics, “stress”), researcher, educator, writer/editor and Jim Littleford, electrician at Recovery Boiler # 4 at Dryden mill will be our guest speakers for this Tuesday’s session.  We will look at how body mapping can be used to define clusters, etc.  We look forward to seeing you there. 

Bio of Dorothy Wigmore:

Dorothy Wigmore, Occupational health specialist (hygiene, ergonomics, “stress”), researcher, educator, writer/editor and Jim Littleford, electrician at Recovery Boiler # 4 at Dryden mill will be our guest speakers for this Tuesday’s session.  We will look at how body mapping can be used to define clusters, etc. 

Dorothy has worked with/for unions, governments, occupational health centres/clinics, NGOs and universities in Canada, the United States and Mocambique. These days, she is self-employed and based in Winnipeg (with a move to Kitchener, Ontario planned for December), and writing a lot about the hazards of cleaning and disinfecting, especially in the pandemic.

About 25 years ago, Dorothy became a pioneer of body and workplace mapping, tools she has adapted for different jobs and situations as needed. They can help participants “see with new eyes” and make visible harm and hazards that are hard to see. As pictures of collective experience, the maps also start participants telling stories that can lead to action and change.

Tuesday Sept 29th IW Session – Guest speaker Ellen MacEachen

Researcher, Ellen MacEachen will present research findings on insights gained from RTW Coordinators about strategies for managing RTW for people with common mental health conditions. These have been compiled in a 60-page stakeholder guide called: “Road Blocks and Alternate Routes: Practical Strategies for Managing Mental Health and Return to Work” (this is available for download at http://ellenmaceachen.ca/rtw-mental-health-guide/).

She will also share findings about how the work conditions of RTW Coordinators themselves shapes the RTW process. RTW Coordinators are required to meet their own employer’s performance mandates for issues such as minimal injured worker absence while also meeting worker health and recovery needs. MacEachen proposes a theory to explain this often conflicted position and related high RTW Coordination turnover and burnout. Finally, she reflects on implications of RTW coordination for workers themselves.

NEW: Sara Mojtehedzadeh’s Toronto Star podcast Report on the Demer’s Report (July 15, 2020): Is Ontario ignoring workplace cancer?

Tuesday Sept 22@ 10 am – Iw Session – Exploring next steps for Paul Demers Report

TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 15, 2020 @ 10 am. The Thunder Bay & District Injured Workers Support Group will be partnering with the Injured Workers Community Legal Clinic (IWC) for our session this upcoming Tuesday. The session will be hosted by IWC with guest speakers who will help us understand the nuts and bolts of the Paul Demers Report on occupational disease.

Contact us at TBWISG@gmail.com if you want to join us!

The Paul Demers Report