Krystal Gray from Guelph, ON, is the recipient of the Workers’ History Museum Pat McGrath Scholarship for 2023.

She is currently attending the Early Childhood Program at Conestoga College at the Doon Campus located in Kitchener Ontario. After she graduates from this degree program in April 2024, she plans to earn a diploma in Children’s Mental Health while becoming registered with the Ontario College of ECEs. Her goal is to help children learn early how special they are and how many opportunities the world has for them.

The 9 -Hour Movement was established in 1872 when industrial workers decided they no longer wanted to work 12-14 hour shifts daily. Large groups of people gathered in protest for shorter working hours and as a result, the Trade Unions Act was created. My drawing depicts aspects of the 9-Hour Movement which is considered ground-breaking. The newspaper article that I have included in my drawing is an actual news article, drawn a little differently for creative purposes, however the words and meaning behind the article are still intact. The burning torch signifies the men who stood in protest, holding torches. The black background symbolizes the darkness these men must have experienced before this Movement as they dealt with ongoing fatigue due to long working hours, and the many deaths that have happened because of fatigue while on the job. A plaque commemorating the Printers Strike of 1872 is on display in the northeast corner of Queens Park Cresent East and Grosvener Street in Toronto, Ontario. This is one of the first major strikes in Canadian History to improve the working conditions and its impacts can be felt today. This is why I have decided to draw a piece of art showcasing this life changing Canadian moment in workers history.