Statement from Bea Bruske: Banning scab labour is about protecting workers’ rights

February 27, 2024

Ottawa – The labour movement gets to celebrate another victory today with the vote on Bill C-58, the legislation to ban the use of replacement workers.

Canada’s unions are happy to see significant progress made on banning replacement workers, a crucial missing piece of Canada’s labour laws for decades. This was made possible by thousands of union activists across the country who stood up and demanded better from the government.

This is an important step towards truly protecting workers and their right to strike, this legislation must apply to any work regularly performed by bargaining unit workers and should not deny workers the right to legally strike by creating more essential service barriers.

We have seen years of record corporate profits while workers’ pay lagged far behind. Workers are rightly demanding fairer wages, better safety standards and respect from their employers.

By banning the use of scabs once and for all, we can take a real step towards less labour disruptions, avoiding work stoppages and building a more balanced economy—while increasing the benefits and respect workers deserve.

Now, we need Parliamentarians of all stripes to work together and amend the legislation to ensure it comes into force as soon as it receives Royal Assent. It is pivotal in order to bring immediate protection for workers’ rights and restore fairness to the collective bargaining process. We’ve waited long enough.

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