Liberals Deny Employees their Bargaining Rights

(Posted Apr 26, 2011)

The PEI Union of Public Sector Employees says the Liberal Government is discriminating against Civil Service causal employees by denying them their full bargaining rights.

President Shelley Ward says "the collective bargaining process provides two mechanisms to settle disputes if parties are unable to reach an agreement. The first is conciliation whereby a conciliator helps parties resolve outstanding issues to bring about a negotiated settlement; the second, is arbitration, whereby a third party - the arbitrator - hears the case and arrives at a decision that is legally binding on both parties."

Ward explains that "the current Civil Service Act Regulations, as outlined in sections 82.6 and 66 (f) do not give an arbitrator or arbitration board the jurisdiction to rule on casual issues. Therefore, our casual workforce does not enjoy the same bargaining rights as every other member of PEI UPSE in both the private and public sectors. Casual employees simply have no access to an alternative dispute resolution process - which is a violation of their bargaining rights."

"The Ghiz Government has the power to amend the Civil Service Act Regulations through Executive Council so that an arbitration board does have the power to rule on casual issues. The union met with Premier Ghiz on this issue; however, he has refused to make the necessary changes. Once again the Liberal Government is turning its back on labour and is discriminating against its most vulnerable employees. Every other casual employee on PEI has the right to fully and collectively bargain with third party intervention under the Labour Act. So why is Premier Ghiz discriminating against Civil Service casual employees by denying them their full collective bargaining rights?

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