Government of Canada tables legislation to restore fair and balanced labour laws
November 28, 2016 – Ottawa – Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat
The Government of Canada is committed to restoring fair and balanced labour laws that recognize the important role of unions in Canada.
Today, the Government introduced legislation to repeal portions of Bill C-4 (Economic Action Plan 2013 Act, No. 2, Division 17), dealing with essential services, collective bargaining and processes for grievances and dispute resolution in the public service. The legislation will restore the labour relations regime that existed prior to 2013 and supports collaborative labour-management relations.
The Government remains committed to negotiating in good faith with bargaining agents to reach agreements that are fair and reasonable for federal employees and for all Canadian taxpayers.
- In 2015, the Supreme Court of Canada struck down Saskatchewan’s essential services legislation, which included similar provisions to the federal legislation adopted in 2013.
- In May 2016, the Government committed to repeal the provisions of the previous Government’s Bill C-4 dealing with essential services, collective bargaining, and processes for grievances and dispute resolution, that had been imposed without consultation.
- While the existing provisions of Bill C-4 remain in force until this new legislation is adopted, the Government is committed to working with public sector unions to ensure current practices are in line with the intent to repeal these provisions.
- The Government has engaged in ongoing discussions with bargaining agents in the context of collective bargaining and ongoing litigation around the 2013 legislation.
“By restoring fair and balanced labour laws, the Government is recognizing that labour unions play an important role protecting workers’ rights and strengthening the middle class. As another critical step in rebuilding the relationship with Canada’s public service, we are moving to repeal unfair changes to the public service labour relations regime brought into law by the previous government.”
– The Honourable Scott Brison, President of the Treasury Board
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