Michael blasts “Water Street merchant model” of labour relations
NDP Leader Lorraine Michael (MHA, Signal Hill-Quidi Vidi), for the third day running, continued to challenge government’s plan to make regressive changes to the Labour Relations Act.
“The Newfoundland and Labrador Federation of Labour, the Canadian Union of Public Employees and UNIFOR, have all publicly condemned government’s decision to remove automatic card-based certification of new bargaining units,” Michael said in the House of Assembly today.
“I ask the Premier what message is he sending to the labour movement by reverting to a paternalistic, repressive, Water Street merchant model that favours anti-union employers in the certification process?”
Michael says there is no rationale for government’s abrupt reversal on an act it changed just two years ago. “There is no evidence of irregularities or deficiencies in the process obtained since automatic certification became the law in this province,” she said.
“What is the real motivation behind government’s actions?”
She also questioned the minister responsible for labour relations’ statement to media that he had consulted with employer and workers in coming to the decision to get rid of card-based certification.
“In the spirit of openness and transparency would he please tell this House who were the employers and workers with whom he consulted and when these consultations took place?” she asked.
Michael says it is inexplicable to her that anyone elected to represent the people would support a move that would result in fewer workers having well-paying jobs and benefits such as health insurance and pensions.