Dear Members of the Canadian Association of Stand-up, Sketch, and Improv Comedians (CASC),

The Canadian Association of Stand-up, Sketch, and Improv Comedians (CASC) wants to become a Unifor chapter, and we’d like to highlight the numerous advantages and opportunities this affiliation would bring.

For groups in which members are precarious, freelance or self-employed workers, and have different workplaces, the community chapter model is used. It creates a formal alliance between people to build solidarity and strength and provides access to practical benefits such as health and dental insurance.

What is Unifor?

Community chapters are based on one important principle: we’re stronger when we work together. Forming a chapter is more than just signing up, as an individual. It means that you are ready to find people who are in a situation similar to yours and to work with them to achieve your goals. CASC is ready.

Community chapters aim to reach out to workers in non-traditionally organized workplaces and sectors. For instance, workers who are self-employed, freelance, contract or have various precarious working conditions can now work together to form a community chapter. 

The goal of this CASC community chapter is to give a voice to our community that did not have one before.

Does this mean we are Unionizing? 

No. While both Unifor community chapters and unionizing with collective bargaining involve organizing workers to advocate for their interests, they differ in their focus and approach. 

Community chapters prioritize community-building, advocacy, and support, while unionizing with collective bargaining aims to negotiate legally enforceable contracts with employers to secure specific terms and conditions of employment.

Unifor’s Community Chapters are a new tool for building our communities and our power as working people.

What will the dues be?

Joining Unifor as a chapter means that the annual fee will be $120 annually or $10/month. In the case of community chapters that are national in scope, Unifor, will collect dues from members and will then make those dues available to CASC for the implementation of its plan of action. You heard that right. Unifor gives CASC back that money. So in essence Unifor does not collect any money. So why would Unifor do this? More members mean more collective strength.

In forming the chapter, members will have committed to membership for at least one full calendar year.
The full amount of collective dues will be made available for the activities of the CASC community chapter and our plan of action. The administrative cost of ensuring dues collection and distribution will be assumed by the national union, Unifor.

What are the reasons we want to join?

  • CASC wants to improve the working conditions in your workplace
  • CASC members are precarious, contract, freelance or self-employed workers who are traditionally excluded from collective bargaining
  • Today, many comedians do not have access to chapter representation and benefits.
  • CASC members are unemployed and know other people in the same situation who want to improve their conditions of work and life
  • CASC wants to help redefine how people see and understand comedians
  • CASC wants to work to defend the rights of all working comedians
  • CASC thinks we’re stronger when we work together

Next Steps: Your Input Matters!

Before proceeding, we want to ensure that this decision reflects the collective interests of our members. We will be hosting our AGM in April to have a final vote on Unifor. Your participation is crucial in shaping the future of our association.

We believe that joining Unifor as a chapter is a significant step forward for Canadian comedy, providing us with the tools and support needed to navigate the unique challenges of our industry. We look forward to your active participation in the upcoming town hall and the exciting possibilities that lie ahead for our community.

Thank you for your time and ongoing commitment to the Canadian comedy scene.