A Grander Vision


A stirring, heartfelt manifesto written by a man who fervently believes in what workers with their civil society allies can achieve for the good of all.

Sid Ryan, one of Canada’s most courageous and progressive union leaders, draws on the experience of his varied and colourful life to show what is right with the labour movement, what is wrong, and what has to change if it is to avoid becoming irrelevant.

In A Grander Vision, Ryan calls for the adoption of social movement unionism, in which labour forges an alliance with other progressive elements in civil society, taking up the cause of young people, precarious workers, and immigrants. Ryan asserts that a renewed commitment to the NDP — the party that was built by unions — is necessary and that the Leap Manifesto should become the pillar of the movement in Canada.


Sid Ryan’s unapologetic commitment to the class struggle at home, and social justice internationally, made him a controversial union leader. That controversy will be stoked by his readiness to expose weaknesses in the movement that was such a fundamental part of his life. But here too he is unapologetic, rightly convinced that honest self-examination is fundamental to the working class reaching its potential as a social force.

Sam Gindin, author and former research director of the Canadian Autoworkers Union

Sid Ryan is a pit bull for justice and his book reads like an action novel! Sid has had an extraordinary life and it comes alive in this fast-paced insider’s story of the most important union battles of our time.

Maude Barlow, honorary chairperson of the Council of Canadians

No mushy middle for Sid Ryan! This is a great read, looking back at decades of bold and principled labour leadership in partnership with community, dedicated global solidarity, and a powerful call for social movement unionism to lead the struggle against inequality and climate change – a vision for a world of social, economic and environmental justice.

Svend Robinson, former NDP Member of Parliament

Sid Ryan, in his usual style, has written a no holds barred political biography mostly about his time as President of CUPE and the OFL. An inside account of the most important battles of the labour movement and within the labour movement, A Grander Vision not only looks at some of the most important political battles of the last few decades, it also provides ideas for building a strong united social movement of trade unions in alliance with community groups."

Judy Rebick, author of Heroes in My Head

I rarely agreed with Sid, but never doubted his sincerity, and — as readers will discover — his courage to stand by his principles against both friend and foe.

Claire Hoy, columnist and author

About the Authors

Sid Ryan

Posted by Dundurn Guest on June 12, 2018
Sid Ryan photo

Sid Ryan

Sid Ryan served six years as both the president of the Ontario Federation Labour, where he represented over one million workers. Previously, he had served seventeen years as president of CUPE Ontario and general vice-president of CUPE National. He lives in Whitby, Ontario.