PRESS RELEASE: OTTAWA — Postal workers are cheering today’s ruling that the former Conservative government violated its members’ freedom of association by legislating them back to work on June 26, 2011.
“This is a win for workers everywhere,” said Mike Palecek, national president of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers.
“In 2011, Canada Post and the Conservative government gamed the system by first locking postal workers out and then forcing us back to work. This interference was completely unfair and meant we could not freely bargain.”
The ruling by Ontario Superior Court Justice Firestone declares that the Conservative legislation, which also imposed an offer on the postal workers, “violates the rights to freedom of association and freedom of expression” under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms sections 2d) and 2b), and that it is “unconstitutional and of no force and effect.”
“Let this be a warning to Deepak Chopra and his 22 vice presidents that the legislation trick won’t work this time,” said Palecek.
CUPW is currently in negotiations and Canada Post CEO Deepak Chopra, who shut Canada Post’s doors nation-wide and locked out the postal workers in 2011, remains at the helm. The Crown Corporation management has applied for conciliation and refuses to entertain any of the postal workers’ demands for improved services and an end to concessions.
“Canada Post is already trying to push things by starting the countdown to a lockout,” said Palecek. “This time, they won’t be able to count on the government to make it easy for them.”