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Union opposes NDP Stance on MLA Compensation

For Immediate Release

Posted: April 9, 2013


The Union of Public Sector Employees does not support the leader of the NDP’s call to roll back MLA wages. Debbie Bovyer, President of UPSE, says “the union is against wage rollbacks in principle, does not support the idea that union members should be on committees that determine MLA wages, and believes the public is the ultimate judge of MLA compensation.”

President Bovyer says “the system in place now to determine MLA wages is not perfect, but it works. The Indemnities and Allowances Commission makes yearly recommendations regarding appropriate wage increases for MLAs. It is up to government to accept these recommendations or decline them, and public debate plays a significant role in this process.”

“I think Mike Redmond’s idea to tie salary increases to government budget performance, action on Auditor General reports, environmental measures, and reducing the debt to GDP ratio is already in a sense happening under the current system. In fact, that is the very reason the Premier was looking to change it last week. He was tired of all the public debate focused on MLA compensation. He wasn’t upset with the work of the Commission. So in a sense, the public is already judging government’s performance in regard to their compensation under the current system,” says Bovyer.

“Redmond’s other suggestions, to initiate wage rollbacks and place union members on committees that oversee MLA wages, were not well received by the union. UPSE does not support the reversal of binding agreements, especially concerning wages. The union also has concerns about involving members in any situation where they could determine wages for other parties outside of their bargaining units – especially when those parties have an influence on determining union member wage packages.”

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Please contact Mark Barrett at 892-5335 (or toll-free at 1-800- 897-8773) to arrange an interview.