MEDIA RELEASE: NSGEU Calls on Gov’t to Respect Collective Bargaining

We are deeply disappointed to see the McNeil government once again employing heavy-handed tactics to skew the collective bargaining process in their own favour.

Yesterday’s decision to take away Crown Attorneys’ right to arbitration and replace it with the “right to strike” that has been severely weakened by mandatory essential services will only harm workers and the services they deliver.

Let us be clear: we do not represent Crown Attorneys. But, we unequivocally support the rights of all workers to bargain free from government interference that will unfairly tilt the process in favour of either the employer or employee.

“Collective bargaining is a deliberate process that is designed to yield a fair and balanced outcome,” said NSGEU President Jason MacLean, “By continuing to meddle with this long-standing practice, the McNeil government threatens to throw the already-overwhelmed legal system into chaos.”

Furthermore, this only serves to put all other unions representing public sector workers on notice that this government is still squarely opposed to bargaining in good faith, setting a negative tone for all upcoming contract negotiations.

“We’ve seen government make similar arguments about many other important public sector workers in this province: health care and home care workers, and doctors,” MacLean said, “These continued attacks have negatively impacted recruitment and have pushed health care into crisis, leaving important public services in peril.”

We are calling on this government to withdraw the legislation they have tabled to interfere with the Crown Attorney’s bargaining process, and to begin to bargain in good faith. It is only when they begin to respect the process that we can achieve labour peace.

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The Nova Scotia Government and General Employees Union represents over 31,000 women and men who provide quality public services Nova Scotians count on every day.
For more information or to arrange an interview with NSGEU President Jason MacLean, please contact:
Holly Fraughton, NSGEU Communications Officer
902-424-4063 (office)
902-471-1781 (cell)

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