Political Action E-mail #4

Hello members of Local Lodge 712
Since our last email, attacks from the Harper Government against the labour movement have multiplied and are so less subtle than before. The Conservatives are campaigning on this for the 2015 federal election.
The Harper Government puts the lives of workers in DANGER! In Bill C-4, the Government wants to weaken the right to refuse dangerous work, abolish the role of federal Governments health and safety officers within the investigation process and give employers the power to discipline workers when they invoke the right to refuse to do dangerous work. By removing this very important role of the health and safety officers in the refusal to work process, the Bill replaces any reference to health and safety officers by the « Minister ».
More over, this Bill empowers employers to decide whether the work is hazardous to the health & safety or even the life of the workers. They can without being excessive, discipline or even terminate employees. The proposed amendments will inevitably lead to a higher number of deaths and injuries among Canadian workers.
Also found within the context of Bill C-4, the right to strike is virtually revoked for federal employees, it gives the employer decision-making powers without right of appeal when determining if services are essential in the federal public sector. In this case the role of trade unions will be reduced to only an advisory authority.
With this Bill, the Government amends the law on labour relations in the public sector to prevent federal employees the right to appeal by use of tribunal and the Canadian Human Rights Commission to resolve complaints of discrimination in the workplace. Members will now have to present their grievance directly to their employer, who will have the power to reject the complaint based on the simple fact to judge him frivolously, trivially, veraciously or in bad faith.
Bill C-4 reinvents the rules of labour relations to better pick on middle-class workers and reduce the possible interventions of trade unions. This is an unprecedented attack. An adoption of Bill (C-4) is a 50 year leap backwards for federal public employees. Say to yourselves that the federal government wants to map out the path of the right wing parties at the provincial level.
At the beginning of the New Year, we wish prosperity for the labour movement and the middle class. I will give you an update on the progression of pending bills.
Have an excellent holiday season with family and friends and we welcome you back in the coming New Year.
Eric Rancourt , Vice-President and head of Political Action, Local Lodge 712,IAMAW

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