Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE)

Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE)

December 21, 2012 11:53 ET

CORRECTION FROM SOURCE: CUPE NS president urging Senators to block Bill on union finances

TRURO, NOVA SCOTIA--(Marketwire - Dec. 21, 2012) -

This document corrects and replaces the press release that was sent today at 4 AM EST.

The president of CUPE Nova Scotia has a message for Conservative MP's and Senators from this province.

Danny Cavanagh says, "Bill C-377, the union finances bill, will bring an enormous cost to taxpayers, who should be asking themselves what the real purpose behind this bill is.

"Implementation of this Bill will cost hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars and set up a wasteful bureaucracy. CUPE members already have full public disclosure of their union's finances, which they receive at every national convention," explains Cavanagh.

The Privacy Commissioner of Canada has expressed concern about Bill C-377. Even with recent amendments to the Bill, the names and exact salaries of union officials earning more than $100,000 a year would be publicly disclosed. This is less privacy protective than the public disclosure requirements for registered charities in Canada.

(EDITORS: Please note that she has not said that the Bill is unconstitutional and she did not request that the Bill be withdrawn.)

See her full statement to the Finance committee on this issue: http://www.priv.gc.ca/parl/2012/parl_20121107_e.asp

The Canadian Bar Association, representing the country's legal community, suggests several aspects of it are illegal and violate the Charter of Rights and Freedoms," says Cavanagh.

The bill was passed in the House of Commons but still has to get past the Senate. It singles out unions and would force every labour organization in Canada to file detailed financial information annually on their spending, including everything from what they pay out to private contractors for janitorial services to snow removal.

Says Cavanagh, "I would encourage all 105 Senators including the ones from Nova Scotia to stop this bill in its tracks and seek a legal opinion on its constitutionality."

Cavanagh says he is deeply disappointed in a response he received from local MP Scott Armstrong, who is towing the Harper government's line on C-377. An amendment to include business organizations, whose members enjoy the same tax treatment that union members do, was voted down by the Conservative members of parliament.

Contact Information

  • Danny Cavanagh
    CUPE NS President
    (902) 957-0822 (Cell)

    John McCracken
    CUPE Atlantic Communications Rep
    (902) 880-8057 (Cell)