Unanimous support from MPs for anti-scab legislation – now over to senators

May 28, 2024

Bruske: My message to the Senators is clear: Pass Bill C-58 without further delays. The future of workers and the integrity of our labour system depend on it.

OTTAWA — Today marks a significant milestone in the history of the labour movement as Canadian Labour Congress President, Bea Bruske, and Canadian Labour Congress Executive Vice President, Siobhán Vipond, stood with NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh and his caucus to celebrate the passage of Bill C-58, the legislation to ban the use of replacement workers.

The labour movement has long fought for anti-scab legislation, recognizing its crucial role in protecting workers and their right to strike. The passing of Bill C-58 is not just a legislative win but a monumental victory for workers across the country.

Walking the picket line is a tough decision, made even harder when faced with the threat of scab labour. This reality intensifies the stress on workers who are already making difficult choices for their families and communities. The use of replacement workers undermines the right to strike, escalates labour disputes, and increases hostility on picket lines. Too many workers have faced direct conflicts during strikes, threatening their safety and livelihoods. This must end.

“This achievement was made possible with the efforts of thousands of union activists across the country who stood up and demanded better from the government”, said Bea Bruske, CLC President. “With a ban on the use of replacement workers, we take a real step toward true protection for workers’ rights, restoring fairness to the collective bargaining process, less labour disruptions, avoiding work stoppages and building a more balanced economy.’’

This win is a result of decades of advocacy by the NDP alongside the labour movement. Political leaders who truly support workers understand that banning scabs is essential for fair bargaining and worker protection.

“I want to extend my gratitude to Jagmeet Singh and Alexandre Boulerice for their steadfast support and Minister O’Regan for his collaboration,” added Bruske.

We must now call for anti-scab legislation in all provinces. Quebec has had such a law for over 45 years, and British Columbia for 30 years, with positive impacts in both provinces. Strong anti-scab legislation is vital for the future of all workers, protecting their rights and restoring fairness at the bargaining table.

There is unanimous support from all MPs for banning replacement workers. The Standing Committee has carefully scrutinized and strengthened the bill.

Canada’s unions are urging Senators to pass Bill C-58 without further delays.

The future of workers and the integrity of our labour system depend on it.

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