The Winnipeg General Strike

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The Winnipeg General Strike The year of 1919 has been one of the most influential years of strikes

in Canadian history. The event that occurred on this year still

lingers in Canadian minds and continues to be one of the most

meaningful and powerful effects of labor protest and the struggle of

people to create trade union rights. As it is stated it is “the first

and the only time in Canadian history that a major city was split

clearly into two opposing classes.” (McNaught, 1963). The implications

of The Winnipeg General Strike were far more reaching that just

Winnipeg alone. It is argued that: “it involved the federal state,

which threw its whole weight behind the business interests of

Winnipeg, and aroused deep and bitter feelings in the ranks of labor

all over the country. Its impact was far wider than the immediate

economic issues of the strike. In the end, the six weeks that shook

Winnipeg also shook the politics of Canada, and the legacy of the

strike is more to be seen in its political consequences that in any

other of its many aspects.” (Penner, 1975).

During WWI, which began in 1914, Canada showed its loyalty to Britain

by sending many Canadian soldiers to fight in the battlefield. Canada

was also a big supplier of ammunition and food to Europe during the

war. This created many jobs during the war and even the unskilled and

unemployed were able to find employment. Although war proved to be


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...rtially achieve their goals.


Abid, May 20, 1919.

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