Another Labor Victory Over Ford’s Bad Bills – Steelworkers Union | Rare Techy
TORONTO, November 30, 2022— (BUSINESS WIRE)–The American Steelworkers (USW) announced another victory for workers as the Ontario Superior Court struck down Bill 124 as a “significant interference” with workers’ freedom of association and collective bargaining.
“Union workers took Doug Ford’s bad bill to court and we won!” said Myles Sullivan, USW District 6 Director (Ontario and Atlantic Canada). “With this decision, the rights of workers have been recognized and strengthened.”
The USW is among more than 40 unions representing 270,000 workers across Ontario that filed 124 constitutional challenges to the bill in 2019.
The Coalition’s claim that Bill 124 violates the collective bargaining rights set out in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms’ guarantee of freedom of association has been upheld by this judgment.
Bill 124 would cap benefits, including wages, pensions and benefits for millions of unionized workers in the broader public sector in Ontario, at 1% over a three-year period, well below the record inflationary increase in the cost of living.
Workers affected by Bill 124 and members of the coalition include workers in provincial government, state agencies, school boards, universities and colleges, hospitals, not-for-profit nursing homes, children’s charities, social service agencies, and in the electricity and energy sector.
Since 2019, Bill 124 has unfairly suppressed thousands of USW members, including university and long-term care workers. Most of the workers affected by Bill 124 are women.
“Over many years, our nation’s courts have repeatedly rejected legislative efforts by Liberal and Conservative governments to suppress Canadians’ fundamental rights to freedom of association and meaningful collective bargaining,” Sullivan said.
By coordinating resistance efforts, unions have successfully challenged legislation that violates workers’ rights in the past, including the previous Liberal government’s Bill 115. Bill 115 was found by the courts to violate workers’ charter rights and was ultimately struck down.
Earlier this month, union solidarity forced the Ontario government to back down and rescind Bill 28, which preemptively ordered CUPE educators to return to work.
USW represents 225,000 members in nearly every sector of the Canadian economy and is the largest private sector union in North America, with 850,000 members in Canada, the United States and the Caribbean.
Each year, thousands of workers choose to join the USW because of its strong record of creating healthier, safer and more respectful workplaces and negotiating better working conditions and fairer compensation – including better wages, benefits and pensions.
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Myles Sullivan, USW District 6 Director, 416-243-8792
Shannon Devine, USW Communications, (cell) 416-938-4402, email@example.com