Services

Health Plan

Having access to health and dental coverage is an important part of increasing the working and living conditions for Canadian workers. Unfortunately, many workers do not have access to benefits as part of their employment. By working together in a community chapter, groups of workers can gain access to a selection of benefits plan for themselves and their families.

The plans available to members in community chapters are offered by Greenshield Canada. There are six different plans that vary in benefits and cost.

Click here to view detailed information about the plans.

Home and Auto Insurance

Through Unifor, CFU members can also access reduced insurance costs for home and auto insurance. To obtain a quote. please visit Unifor Insurance.

Commercial Liability Insurance

The Canadian Freelance Union has negotiated a reduced rate for Commercial General Liability Insurance. To obtain a quote, please fill out this form and send it to the CFU at info@canadianfreelanceunion.ca.

Press Cards

The Canadian Freelance Union offers CFU members who work in public media as journalists, photographers, illustrators, writers and editors access to the International Federation of Journalists’ Press Card and the CFU National Press Card.

Canadian Freelance Union National Press Card

The CFU National Press Card identifies the holder as a professional Canadian freelancer working in public media. It is supported by the CFU for confirmation or accreditation purposes. To qualify for the CFU National Press Card you must be a Canadian Freelance Union member in good standing. There is no additional fee for this card.

IFJ International Press Card

To qualify for the IFJ press card, you must be a Canadian Freelance Union member in good standing. The IFJ card has more international recognition and offers more protection, but it comes with more rigorous requirements and a charge. The card is available through CFU’s connections with Unifor.

To request either, please review the Press card requirements, gather the information necessary, and submit the completed information and attachments to coordinator [@] canadianfreelanceunion.ca.

Grievance Support 

A service to assist our members in managing disputes with clients

A growing number of freelancers face work-related issues, usually around non, or slow payment of fees. The Canadian Freelance Union will assist its members in managing the situation. We will intervene to help resolve the dispute, and to get what is owed to you.

Although every case is unique, the general approach we will use goes like this:

  1. The Canadian Freelance Union receives a complaint or request for help from member. We first talk with the member to determine the scope of the problem, and to get their explicit permission to act on the member's behalf.
  2. The Canadian Freelance Union collects all available documentation from the member. This should include a copy of the freelance services contract, but can also include emails, correspondences or other supporting material.
  3. The Canadian Freelance Union contacts the client/publisher, informing them of the dispute. The Canadian Freelance Union requests an explanation from the client within three weeks.
  4. If the client fails to respond within three weeks a second, more formal, attempt is made. The same message is repeated, but in slightly stronger language. At this point the Canadian Freelance Union hints at further action should the client chose not to cooperate.

a) If the client responds, the Canadian Freelance Union works towards a resolution,

b) If the client fails to respond, or if negotiations fail due to client intransigents, the Canadian Freelance Union will advise and support our members around taking further legal and collective action. The Canadian Freelance Union will also issue a Red Flag against the client, alerting the freelance community as to the facts of the case. This can be via a press release, website publication or email notice to members.

Contract Advice

A service to help members interpret the contracts they face

Contracts are a fact of life in the freelance world. A contract sets out the obligations and responsibilities of the signatories. Contracts can be verbal (as in the "old days"), but most are now written down -- a practice the Canadian Freelance Union fully supports. A good contract is the basis of a fruitful and positive business relationship between freelancer and client. A bad contract can mean disaster, usually for the freelancer.

Through this service, the Canadian Freelance Union will help our members understand and interpret the contracts they face. We will translate the sometimes-intentional legalese into plain english, and we will even offer suggestions about how a bad contract can be made better.

Remember, a contract is an agreement between two (or more) agreeable parties. You are never obligated to sign a contract, and you are fully within your rights to make any changes you want before signing. Never hesitate to edit, change or cross out sections of an offered contract -- it's your right!

CFU Logo and Bug

The Canadian Freelance Union offers CFU members who work in communications access to the CFU union bug. It comes in a variety of formats.

The traditional printer’s union bug had the local union’s number attached to it. You can add your membership number to the CFU bug.

Some cautions come with the use of this bug. Feel free to use it to identify your work on your website, your business cards, and other materials, but please do not use it if you are using a non-union printer (although we recommend you use a union printer whenever possible). If you are printing documents with a non-union printer, you should NOT use the CFU bug because it could be confused with a legitimate printing union bug. The bug only applies to unionized work from start to finish: prepress, press, and bindery.

You can find these images in the members-only section of the CFU website.