Speak Out Against Essential Services Legislation!

Tonight, the Liberal government has introduced essential services legislation that affects ALL health care and community service workers in this province.

Essential services legislation significantly reduces the union’s ability to bargain with any employer. It absolutely diminishes your bargaining power.

Make no mistake. It will shift the balance of power in negotiations strongly in favour of the government/employer. It negatively impacts the bargaining strength of every worker in the province by requiring that a significant portion of workers must stay at work in the event of a strike. Often, arbitration is included in this type of legislation and carries with it serious restrictions on achieving a fair collective agreement.

 In the case of nurses, this type of legislation would seriously impact their ability to speak out on patient safety. Essential services legislation is never about the public but always about silencing workers voices and switching the balance of worker’s rights in favour of the employer.

We run the risk of losing our hard-bargained claim to fair wages comparable to similar sized provinces and other gains we have achieved in our contract.Gaining improvements is more difficult without the right to strike in areas for example; job security, vacation, shift premiums, to name a few.

This legislation isn’t really about public safety. It’s about control.

Allowing only a small percentage of workers in a bargaining unit to go on strike means there is little incentive to reach a deal. There could be more strikes and every strike will be long and drawn-out.

This legislation will silence our voice and reduces our ability to fight back against a government that is compromising patient care and public services in order to cut costs.


Sign up to speak at Law Amendments Committee. The government has an obligation to hear from constituents on this issue. We need you to speak up and explain why this legislation is bad for workers, and Nova Scotia.

It’s easy: sign up by calling 424-8941. Ask to be put on the list of presenters for the essential services bill for nurses. You can do this even if there is a chance you might later change your mind about going before the Committee. Someone with the Legislative Counsel Office will call you back with possible dates and times for your presentation.When you will go to meet with the Committee, you will likely be one of 3 or 4 presenters for that hour. Each presenter is supposed to have 5-10 minutes. While you are free to speak to the Committee without any written notes, it is usually easier and more effective if you write down or type your key points on 1-2 pages, if you have time to do this.

Click here for more information about Law Amendments.

After you have signed up, please call or email to let us know you are on the list! (call Rick or Dave at 424-4063, or email lawamendments@nsgeu.ca)

  • Thank you for your time and support on this very important issue!

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