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Collective Bargaining

Three of the most popular articles this week on HRinfodesk

Three of the most popular articles this week on HRinfodesk deal with the recent federal budget legislation that passed third reading in the house of commons; how the use of prescribed marijuana by employees creates new questions for Canadian employers; and managing performance issues to avoid constructive dismissal claims.

 

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Labour Day, Monday, September 2, is the next public (statutory) holiday

Labour Day originates in the labour union movements of the 1800s as a way to celebrate the social and economic advancements and to pay tribute to the driving force of our economy. The history of Labour Day continued to be connected with organized labour. Initially, the first unofficial “Labour Days” in Canada were […]

 

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HR policies as prevention

At a conference a few years back, there was a session about steps an employer can legally take to oppose a union organizing campaign. I recall my initial reaction to the topic was once a union organizing campaign begins, “it’s too late”. I believe that most union organizing is borne of long-time employee dissatisfaction and insecurity regarding working conditions and management. While there may be some workplaces where union organization results from a political ideology, in most cases, few employees would sign up for the paying of union dues if they did not see the union as an answer to substandard or uncertain workplace policies.

 

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Certification of contract / part-time workers

Earlier this year, the Nova Scotia Labour Board ruled on an application by Local 849 of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees for certification of some technical workers of Egg Studios. Egg Studios is a television commercial and digital content business. It has applied to Nova Scotia Supreme Court for a judicial review of the decision. A hearing on Egg’s application is not expected to take place until March 6-7, 2013, according to court documents. Egg Studios maintains the labour board erred in law by amending the…

 

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Slaw: No continuity of business: Target not the successor employer of Zellers employees

On November 8, 2012, Ritu Mahil, Vice-Chair of the British Columbia Labour Relations Board decided that there was not a continuity between Zellers’ business at the Brentwood Mall in Burnaby, B.C. for its employees to be successively employed by Target in Canada. Although the employees would perform similar jobs at Target stores as they had at Zellers, and the transaction agreement confirmed the transfer of leases, pharmacy records and the brand waiver, these things were not sufficient to conclude that there would be a handover of these employees. As a result, the union’s application under Section 35 of the Labour Relations Code (“Code”) for a declaration that Target is a successor employer to Zellers with respect to the business carried on by Zellers at the Brentwood Mall in Burnaby, B.C.was dismissed.

 

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To be or not to be an employer…

egg films logo

The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees’ successful application for certification by the Nova Scotia Labour Board basically creates a new classification of worker, according to the president of Egg Films Inc. It is a classification composed of technicians employed on a casual basis for particular productions. Egg Films may ask the Nova Scotia Supreme Court for a judicial review.

 

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Collective agreement sets out new terms for a new day at the pulp and paper plant in Port Hawkesbury NS

On July 9, 2012, the Nova Scotia Labour Board filed an interim order certifying Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union, Local 972, the combination of three previously separate bargaining units, namely the Mill Division, Clerical Division and the Woodlands Division, as the bargaining unit for employees of the NewPage pulp and paper plant in Port Hawkesbury NS.

 

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Air Canada’s final offer to pilots had a questionable provision regarding mandatory retirement

As I mentioned recently, the arbitrator favoured Air Canada’s final offer to its pilots to resolve the labour dispute – the collective agreement will be effective until April, 2016.

 

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Arbitrator favours Air Canada’s final offer to pilots in labour dispute

On July 30, 2012, the federal arbitrator made a decision which ends the labour dispute between Air Canada and its pilots: a five-year collective agreement effective until April 2016.

 

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NS labour board redefines what constitutes an employee and a bargaining unit

international alliance of theatrical stage employees logo

On March 5, 2011, the Nova Scotia Labour Board issued an interim order that could set a precedent across Canada, not just in Nova Scotia. The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Moving Picture Technicians, Artists and Allied Crafts of the United States, its Territories, and Canada, Local 849 applied to certify contract workers employed on an as-required basis by Egg Films Inc.

 

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Arbitrators appointed for Air Canada pilots and machinists

I wrote recently about the Air Canada back-to-work legislation and the unions’ challenge to this legislation that it violated the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Well, now the arbitrators have been appointed for the labour disputes, notwithstanding the recent constitutional challenge. It has been decided that Douglas Stanley will be dealing with the pilots’ dispute, and Michel […]

 

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More news on Air Canada: pilots challenge the back-to-work legislation

The Air Canada pre-emptive back-to-work legislation saga continues. Now the pilots have challenged the pre-emptive back-to-work legislation in court arguing that it prevents strikes or lockouts, forces the pilots to keep flying, and coerces the pilots to accept a contract imposed by arbitration in a process that is completely skewed given it was designed to favour the airline’s position…

 

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Tense union negotiations the new norm?

It’s easy to see that that role of workers’ unions is changing, and unions no longer have the respect or power they once had. A couple of recent events in Ontario make that increasingly clear. Is this just how union relations work in the globalized and unsettled economy? Are unionized workers’ demands too great for these austere times?

 

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Supreme Court restricts agricultural workers’ freedom of association

The Supreme Court of Canada has finally released its decision in Ontario (A.G.) v. Fraser affecting the working lives of agricultural workers in Ontario. The decision demonstrates just how divided opinions are on the question of limiting workers’ freedom of association under section 2(d) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, particularly restricting unionization and collective bargaining.

 

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Nova Scotia unified labour board

I recently read about a Bill coming out of Nova Scotia that proposes to merge a number of official forums involving employment and labour relations into one Labour Board, to simplify how workplace disputes are handled, and to establish a committee to keep labour relations laws relevant.

 

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