Posted by & filed under Chapter 1 - Introduction, Chapter 13 - Future Issues, Chapter 2 - Theories of Industrial Relations, Chapter 3 - HIstory of the Canadian Union Movement.

Description: The Conservatives are suggesting they may use their majority in the Senate to block the repeal of controversial labour legislation passed by the former Harper government.

Source: CBC

Date: 01/28/2016

Link: http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/mihychuk-union-financing-bill-1.3423506

 
Related links:

Employment Minister MaryAnn Mihychuk
Conservative labour critic Gérard Deltell
Bill C-377
Bill C-525
Earlier update

Questions for discussion:

• Summarize the provisions of Bill C-377.
• Summarize the provisions of Bill C-525.
• Why does the Trudeau government say these laws should be repealed?
• Based on what you know, do you think it would be a good idea to repeal these laws? Why or why not?
• It is rare for senators – who are appointed, rather than elected – to overturn legislation from the House of Commons. What political implications do you think such a move might have?

Posted by & filed under Chapter 1 - Introduction, Chapter 8 - The Collective Bargaining Process.

Description: Ambulance New Brunswick and the union representing paramedics have reached a compromise on bilingual services, but the union insists there is “no deal.”

Source: CBC

Date: 01/28/2016

Link: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/paramedics-ambulance-nb-bilingualism-1.3422603

Related links:

Ambulance New Brunswick
CUPE local 4848
New Brunswick’s official language rights
Earlier story

Questions for discussion:

• Summarize Ambulance New Brunswick’s “new plan on bilingual services.”
• What is the union’s response to this plan?
• What kind of workers does the recent “compromise” cover?
• Given the statement on local 4848’s website that there is “no deal,” how would you describe the relationship between the two sides?
• Can you see a way to serve the members of the public in their own language without discriminating against unilingual workers?

Posted by & filed under Chapter 1 - Introduction, Chapter 13 - Future Issues.

Description: The Supreme Court of Canada has agreed to hear a case involving the B.C. Teachers’ Federation and the provincial government.

Source: The Vancouver Sun

Date: 01/14/2016

Link: http://www.vancouversun.com/news/Supreme+Court+Canada+hear+Teachers+Federation+appeal/11651654/story.html

Related links:

• CBC story
• The BCTF
• B.C. education ministry
• The B.C. Supreme Court decision
• The B.C. Appeal Court decision
• Earlier update

Questions for discussion:

• What did Judge Griffin rule in 2014?
• What did the B.C. Court of Appeal rule?
• Consult your text: what does it mean to bargain in bad faith?
• What are some of the potential implications of the Supreme Court of Canada’s eventual ruling?
• What are some other recent cases involving industrial relations that have come before the Supreme Court of Canada?

Posted by & filed under Chapter 1 - Introduction, Chapter 13 - Future Issues, Chapter 2 - Theories of Industrial Relations, Chapter 3 - HIstory of the Canadian Union Movement, Chapter 4 - The Structure of Canadian Unions.

Description:  The new federal government has  taken the first steps toward repealing a law that has been denounced as anti-union.

Source: National Post

Date: 12/21/2015

Link: http://news.nationalpost.com/news/canada/liberals-take-first-step-towards-repealing-tory-bill-that-would-force-unions-to-disclose-financial-records

Related links:

Government news release
Huffington Post story
Earlier update
Bill C-377
Building trades unions news release
National Citizens Coalition news release

Questions for discussion:

• Summarize the provisions of Bill C-377.
• When did it become law?
• What action is the federal government taking? How does this fit with the government’s promise to repeal Bill C-377?
• Summarize the arguments of the building trade unions and the National Citizens Coalition.
• Which arguments do you find most persuasive?

Posted by & filed under Chapter 1 - Introduction, Chapter 13 - Future Issues, Chapter 3 - HIstory of the Canadian Union Movement, Chapter 4 - The Structure of Canadian Unions.

Description: The Alberta Federation of Labour is urging the provincial government to bring in a law that would require retail employers to have a minimum of two employees on late-night shifts.

Source: Global News

Date: 12/18/2015

Link: http://globalnews.ca/news/2410081/alberta-labour-group-calls-for-better-safety-for-night-workers-following-deadly-shootings/

Related links:

Edmonton Sun story
Edmonton Journal story
Alberta Federation of Labour
The B.C. law protecting gas station workers
Alberta labour ministry
Alberta justice ministry

Questions for discussion:

• What does the Alberta Federation of Labour say the proposed law should require?
• Consult your text: what is the role of a labour federation?
• Given that most retail employees working night shifts alone do not belong to unions, why do you think the AFL is asking for this law?
• Have you or anyone you know ever worked a solo night shift?
• What do you think about the AFL’s proposal?

Posted by & filed under Chapter 1 - Introduction, Chapter 13 - Future Issues, Chapter 5 - The Organizing Campaign, Chapter 6 - Establishing Union Recognition.

Description: Writers and editors at Vice Canada have begun an organizing campaign.

Source: J-Source

Date: 12/15/2015

Link: http://j-source.ca/article/vice-canada-staff-begin-union-drive

Related links:

Canadian Media Guild
Vice Canada
Story about organizing campaign at U.S. Vice
News release from the Vice Canada campaign organizers

Questions for discussion:

• Consult your text and summarize the steps in an organizing campaign.
• Where are the Vice Canada employees in this process?
• What is the next step?
• What reasons do the employees state for wanting a union?
• Based on what you know, would you be inclined to join a union if you worked at Vice Canada?

Posted by & filed under Chapter 1 - Introduction, Chapter 8 - The Collective Bargaining Process, Chapter 9 - Strikes and Lockouts.

Description: Thousands of Quebec public sector workers are planning to walk off the job Dec. 9.

Source: CBC

Date: 11/26/2015

Link: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/public-sector-strike-dec-9-1.3339079

Related links:

Questions for discussion:

  • Which workers does the Common Front represent?
  • Consult your text: what does the term “para-public sector” mean?
  • What has the government proposed in negotiations?
  • What is the union’s position?
  • Why do you think the Common Front has been holding rotating strikes, rather than a full strike?

Posted by & filed under Chapter 1 - Introduction, Chapter 8 - The Collective Bargaining Process, Chapter 9 - Strikes and Lockouts.

Description: Six former presidents of the Nova Scotia Teachers Union are urging members to reject a new tentative agreement.

Source: CBC

Date: 11/27/2015

Link: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/teachers-union-deal-in-trouble-1.3340239

Related links:

Questions for discussion:

  • Why are the former union presidents opposed to this tentative agreement?
  • What is “unprecedented” about the way the union’s negotiators handled this tentative deal?
  • Consult the Related Links. What does the tentative agreement include?
  • What concessions have the two sides made?
  • The term “union boss,” used in this story’s headline, is often thought to be disparaging – invoking images of corruption. What does the term mean to you? Discuss.

Posted by & filed under Chapter 1 - Introduction, Chapter 13 - Future Issues, Chapter 2 - Theories of Industrial Relations, Chapter 3 - HIstory of the Canadian Union Movement, Chapter 4 - The Structure of Canadian Unions.

Description: Less than a week after being sworn in as prime minister, Justin Trudeau met privately with leaders of the Canadian Labour Congress.

Source: The Huffington Post

Date: 11/10/2015

Link: http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2015/11/10/justin-trudeua-canadian-labour-congress_n_8526072.html

Related links:

Questions for discussion:

  • What was historic about this meeting?
  • Consult your text: what is the role of the CLC?
  • What concerns did the CLC raise? How do these issues affect labour?
  • What reasons does the CLC have to be optimistic about the new government?
  • The CLC tends to support the New Democratic Party. How would this complicate relations with the new Liberal government? Discuss.

Posted by & filed under Chapter 1 - Introduction, Chapter 13 - Future Issues, Chapter 2 - Theories of Industrial Relations, Chapter 3 - HIstory of the Canadian Union Movement, Chapter 9 - Strikes and Lockouts.

Description: The union representing Toronto transit workers has gone to the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, arguing its members should be allowed the right to strike

Source: The Toronto Star

Date: 10/26/2015

Link: http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/transportation/2015/10/26/ttc-workers-union-fights-for-a-return-of-the-right-to-strike.html

Related links:

Questions for discussion:

  • Summarize the union’s argument.
  • What is the government’s response?
  • Read Prof. Doorey’s blog post. How has the Supreme Court of Canada’s view on the right to strike changed over the years?
  • How does the court decide whether an essential services law is constitutional?
  • Do you think the Toronto Transit Commission Labour Disputes Resolution Act is unconstitutional? Explain.