Features, Labor News Briefs, Law and Politics, Municipal Government, National

Postal Strikes Continue as Canadian Senate Mulls Back-to-Work Bill

December 3, 2018

By Steve Wishnia and Neal Tepel

HALIFAX, Nova Scotia—Canadian postal workers began another rotating strike in the Halifax area Nov. 26, the day the Senate was expected to vote on legislation to force them back to work. Workers stopped processing and delivering mail in Halifax and Dartmouth, the Nova Local of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers said, but continued to accept packages and sell stamps. The House of Commons passed a bill Nov. 24 that would prohibit strikes while the CUPW’s contract dispute with Canada Post goes to mediation or binding arbitration. The vote was 166-43, with all but six members from the left-liberal New Democratic Party walking out before the roll call. If the Senate passes the bill, it would go into effect the next day. The CUPW, which began the rotating strikes in October to demand better pay for rural and suburban carriers, less mandatory overtime, and more job security, argues that the measure would violate the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms; it had a 2011 back-to-work law ruled unconstitutional in 2016 for denying the right to strike. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal Party says the bill is legal because postal services are important to the Canadian economy. Read more

December 3, 2018

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