Page 27 - A Visit with Winston Ruck, Steelworker
ISSUE : Issue 60
Published by Ronald Caplan on 1992/6/1
bricklayers. In order for them to overcome that discrimination, changed their names. For instance, there was one fellow named Joe Stokola. He just cut off the last part of it and called himself Joe Stock.... (Your father wanted to be a bricklayer....) Oh, yeah, but he's visible. He was a black man. They openly told you you can't get in the bricklayers. They didn't bite their tongue about it or pretend otherwise. They told you openly that you can't get a job there. So, I knew that. When I got on the plant, I suppose, to some extent--or it wasn't very long after--I knew that brick? layers never hired any black people. (Tell me honestly, Winston--I know you were young, I know you were looking for fun--but did you not have anger?) Not at that time. 'Cause we had a job. We had a job the same as my wife's friend who lived next door to me. I was doing the same work that he was, for the most part. Every white person on the plant wasn't a bricklayer or a carpen? ter or electrician or machinist. You know? So in that sense, I wasn't discriminated against--I had a job!... But you see. there were those blacks who had become members of the various grie? vance committees on the plant, who started advocating for minority rights. Sam Heck? les was one; he was on the grievance com? mittee, a black man. And he was very prom? inent- -a forceful man, and who would take up those kind of challenges, and bring them to the knowledge of the executive. He was one of the leading advocates. So it started gradually after the war. You must remember, the union wasn't strong ei? ther. So, you by yourself can't do very much if you haven't got a vehicle to use. But you've got to have people of good will who are heading up that union. What's the good of a union if it's practicing discrimination? (So you're not going to work every day, gritting your teeth.) No. I was glad to have a job. It's a whole different atmosphere. I have a job, the same as everybody else. You know, we weren't aspiring to be elec- Your Vacation Base • or Way Station • at Bras d'Or: Good Service for Our Neighbours and Our Visitors CAPE BRETON TRAILER SALES Trans'Canada Highway 544-0157 ~ YOUR DEPENDABLE TRAILER DEALER ~ Come In and See Our Selection of NEW & USED HARD TOPS & TRAVEL TRAILERS • Visit Our Showroom for a Great Selection • MacNEIL'S MOTEL the best in comfort and accommodation Trans-Canada Highway 105 Bras d'Or, Cape Breton BOC IBO 17 UNITS COLOUR CABLE T.V. ELECTRIC HEAT Overlooking the Bras d'Or Lakes (902)736-9106 ?? (902)736-2692 MCantic 0-[arvest 'staurant SeoKOodOaf*' Speciaota' BreaKtast, Lunch, and Dinner Specials Open Daily • 6 AM to 9 PM ''-'' Catering to Banquets iBH'I * & Any Special Occasions * |JjggQg Bras d'Or • on the Trans-Canada Hwy OPEN YEAR ROUND 736-2366 GEORGE MacNEIL MEATS Ltd. POINT ACONI ROAD - 736-8249 736-3518 Now! is the time to fill your freezer for the long Winter ahead! • BEEF • Cut and wrapped for your freezer Front Quarter $1.69 lb. Hind Quarter $2.39 lb. • Side of Beef $1.89 lb. Fresh Pork by the Side $1.39 lb. Fresh Lamb also available at reasonable prices. Avoid Disappointment - Come Early Trans-Canada High'way at Bras d*Or
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