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Unions

Labour Day is a global and national annual holiday

Across Canada, Labour Day is a public holiday that is observed on the first Monday in September every year. This year, Labour Day is Monday September 4, 2017. Government bodies and agencies, as well as most businesses, are closed on Labour Day.

 

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IRCC announces details of global skills strategy

On June 12, 2017, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) announced details of its Global Skills Strategy. First announced in November 2016, the Global Skills Strategy is intended to help promote global investment in Canada and support the Government of Canada’s Innovation and Skills Plan.

 

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Certification and recertification requirements change for federally regulated workplaces beginning June 22, 2017

Employers in unionized workplaces are recommended to become familiar with the changes made by Bill C-4, An Act to amend the Canada Labour Code, the Parliamentary Employment and Staff Relations Act, the Public Service Labour Relations Act and the Income Tax Ac and take a careful look at the transitional provisions in Bill C-4 in the case where there is an existing application with the Board.

 

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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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Construction industry certification: Nova Scotia Court of Appeal weighs in

In Nova Scotia, an employer in the construction industry may become certified by a union if the Labour Board is satisfied that the applicant union “has as members in good standing more than fifty percent of the employees in the appropriate unit”.  Accordingly, the definition of the bargaining unit is a significant issue in construction industry certifications because the employees in the unit materially impact whether the certification application is successful.

 

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Ontario Human Rights Commission released updated policy on “preventing discrimination based on Creed”

This past December the Ontario Human Rights Commission released a new and comprehensive 173 page Updated Policy on Preventing Discrimination based on Creed to replace its earlier Policy that was first published in 1996. The Commission stated that given the significant demographic changes in Ontario, it has been working on a new policy since 2012. The aim of the policy is to highlight how discrimination on the basis of Creed can be avoided in broader Ontario society which is increasingly more diverse.

 

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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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SCC orders parliament to reconsider RCMP labour relations

Until last Friday, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police was Canada’s only police force that was legislatively prohibited from unionizing. On January 16, 2015, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled…

 

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Surreptitious tape recording of bargaining negotiations not admitted into evidence

The issue in this case was whether a surreptitious tape recording of bargaining negotiations was allowed to be admitted into evidence.

 

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Slaw: A Look at Unionization Rate in Canada in Light of This Year’s Labour Day

This year, Labour Day falls on Monday September 1, 2014. All provinces and territories observe this holiday. Government bodies and agencies as well as many businesses are closed on Labour Day.

 

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Most-viewed articles this week on HRinfodesk

The three most read articles on HRinfodesk this week deal with the AODA review, the 2014 Employment Insurance premium rates and how an injured employee was dismissed unjustly.

 

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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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Aiming for the sky: Unions in Canada

What would your company do if faced with a union organizing drive like WestJet? WestJet has been targeted by CUPE to sign up its 2800 or so flight attendants to the union. It is understandable that the union is going after WestJet at this time. With its recent growth and upcoming changes the company is more vulnerable than it was in its roots as a more local, smaller and “family of owners” incarnation. This union organizing drive will be closely watched by union supporters, companies and politic.

 

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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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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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