Minutes of Regional Council Teleconference, November 2013

Present:

Jeannie Baldwin, REVP Atlantic

Katie Murphy-Langille, EA to the REVP

Lesley Thompson, Political Communications Officer

Darlene Bembridge, Provincial Director - NB

André Beaulieu, Director for Young Workers

Dina Crawley, Director for Racially Visible Members

Shanny Doucet, Director for Francophone Members

Chris Di Liberatore, Provincial Director - NS

Angela Decker, Director for Womens, NL

Rhonda Doyle-LeBlanc, Director for Womens, Maritimes

Anne Fagan-Wood, Director for Members with Disabilities

Dawn Hardy, Provincial Director - PE

Jim Hondas, Provincial Director - NB

Jody LaPierre, Provincial Director - PE

Robert Lewis, Director for Non-Treasury Board/Separate Employer - NL

Brian Oldford, Director for Non-Treasury Boad/Separate Employer - Maritimes

Lori Walton, Provincial Director – NS

 

Guest:

Morna Ballantyne, PSAC Special Projects Officer

 

Regrets:

Sandy Cake, Director for GLBT Members

 

The purpose of the call was to provide Council with an overview of the following 3 Bills:

1. Bill C-4 Omnibus budget bill (change rights of federal public service workers)

2. Bill C-377 Act to amend the income tax act (target labour organizations)

3. Bill C-525 Card Check (re: Union certification)

 

Sister Baldwin introduced Morna Ballantyne, PSAC Special Projects Officer who provided an overview of the Bills, subsequent material was also provided electronically for Council’s perusal.

 

Bill C4 – Paving the way for government to change provisions of Collective Aggreements. We need to use this as an opportunity to alert our members that it is more urgent for them to mobalize and defend our collective aggreements. Clement made it clear that he is intending to negotiate some dramatic changes to employees’ rights and pensions and get rid of sick leave.

 

Bill C525 – Amend labour code and PSLRA and PESRA proposes to make it difficult for people to unionize and easier to decertify. Sister Ballantyne exclaims that this Bill is clearly directed towards the PSAC and that all workers in federal jurisdiction would be affected.

 

Bill C377 – Reporting provisions. This Bill is in front of the senate once again in its original form because of the perorgration of government. However, we have assurances that same amendments will be made once again.

 

Sister Ballantyne advised that PSAC will take legal action if it is passed. NJC has have several meetings with all federal unions and will fight this together with shared costs.

 

If Bill C4 is passed this will mean the employer has more tools to strip the collective aggreement. However, if we stand strong they cannot do this. The government is coming after sick leave and pensions as a priority.

 

Sister Ballantyne explains that many MPs have not been willing to discuss these Bills and if they refuse to meet then send out a community release and get on the radio station.

Sister Lesley Thompson explained that sometimes a  refusal to meet can be productive, we can keep track of this information and utilise it when we get the chance in larger forums, through media etc. We can have media ask them the questions they won’t answer from us.

 

Regional Plans of Action

Each province has to submit a proposal for a plan of action.

- St.Johns – Demo on November 17, 2013 to involve all members and labour to attend a demo around Bill C4

- Halifax – Community town hall on November 28, 2013. Experts around H&S will be brought in to speak on the changes this bill proposes.

- Prince Edward Island – Would like to hold a theatrical event with the pledge cards that some MPs signed, including Gail Shea pledging their support to protect public service jobs…The PE event will will call Shea out on breaking her promise. Have a trial and call Mike Duffy as a witness and find Shea guilty with a sentence of no re-election in 2015.

 

Other actions include “Stop Harper” plaqards to be placed in homes, vehicles etc.

 

Other Updates:

Rally in Sydney with Veterans Affairs “March of Concern”, November 9, 2013.

 

PSAC Equity Conference is being held in November and action will be done with regard to these Bills.

 

Cathy Jones is not able to attend the Atlantic Convention as keynote speaker.  We will contact Mark Critch from This Hour Has 22 Minutes to see his availability.

 

The REVP thanked Morna for her detailed update on the three Bills and also thanked Council for their participation on the conference call.

 

Adjourned 8:45 p.m

Our Organization: