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right to strike

Back-to-work postal legislation found in violation of Charter rights

Justice Firestone of the Ontario Superior Court recently decided that back–to–work legislation introduced in 2011 aimed at striking postal workers from the Canadian Union of Postal Workers was an unjustified violation of the Union’s rights to freedom of association and expression under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. As a result, the judge retroactively declared the legislation of no force or effect.

 

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Saskatchewan government’s do-over: another version of essential services legislation proposed

Bill 183, The Saskatchewan Employment (Essential Services) Amendment Act, 2015, proposes a new Part VII in the Employment Act, entitled Essential Services. The Bill is currently in third reading.

 

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SCC constitutionalizes the right to strike for unionized employees

In a surprising move, the Supreme Court of Canada overturned its own precedent and found that the right to strike was protected under the Charter.

 

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Slaw: Supreme Court confirms right to strike constitutionally protected

The Supreme Court of Canada in Saskatchewan Federation of Labour v Saskatchewan confirmed once and for all that the right to strike is protected under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

 

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Court of Appeal hints that right to strike may be protected by the Constitution

Last year, the Saskatchewan Court of Queen’s Bench concluded that amendments to the Essential Services Act impeded workers from exercising their fundamental freedom of association, which includes the right to associate and organize, the right to bargain collectively, and the right to strike. Relying on a decision of the International Labour Organization, the Court found that the Act completely and utterly violated section 2(d) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The Court gave the government one year to amend the legislation, but instead, it appealed the ruling. On April 26, 2013, the Saskatchewan Court of Appeal upheld amendments to the Essential Services Act and ruled that whether or not the Charter protects a right to strike is a matter that should be left to the Supreme Court of Canada to decide.

 

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Does essential services legislation violate Charter rights?

After examining Canada’s international labour obligations, Saskatchewan’s Court of Queen’s Bench, has confirmed that section 2(d) of the Charter (the freedom to associate) includes the right to strike. This is something the courts have historically refused to admit in their decisions.

 

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