Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE)

Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE)

January 19, 2015 10:24 ET

CUPE applauds Supreme Court decision recognizing right to collective bargaining

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Jan. 19, 2015) - Canada's largest union is applauding the recent Supreme Court of Canada decision recognizing the right of Canadian workers to free collective bargaining. On Friday, the country's highest court ruled legislation barring RCMP members from forming a union was unconstitutional, infringing on their right to freedom of association.

The Canadian Union of Public Employees is calling the decision an important victory for 21,000 regular and civilian RCMP members, and all Canadian workers.

"The Supreme Court could not be clearer - all workers, including public service employees, have the constitutional right to engage in free collective bargaining," said Paul Moist, national president of CUPE. "And we are pleased to see the Court go even further, by acknowledging the vital role unions and collective bargaining have in advancing the interest of workers."

In its decision, the Supreme Court gave the federal government 12 months to re-write the offending legislation.

"CUPE urges the federal government to move quickly on making the legislative changes needed to respect the rights of RCMP members," says Moist. "We hope they - and all other Canadian governments and public sector employers - fully appreciate this strong precedent on the collective bargaining rights of all public sector workers."

RCMP rank-and-file members have been fighting for over a decade in the courts to form their own association for collective bargaining, independent from RCMP management. Moist congratulated the members for their perseverance on this long court battle.

"This is an exciting time for RCMP members, and on behalf of CUPE's 630,000 members I wish them well on establishing their trade union rights," said Moist. "They will always find a friend in CUPE."

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