Liberals table back-to-work legislation to force an end to CUPW strike

The federal government has introduced back-to-work legislation that could force striking CUPW (Canadian Union of Postal Workers) employees to end their labour dispute with Canada Post Corporation – though Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he still hopes agreements can be struck to end mail disruptions across the country. While saying that legislating an end to a labour dispute is never the best option, Trudeau added his government must act to protect small businesses and the livelihoods of Canadians affected by a month of rotating strikes.

Patty Hajdu.

Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, Patty Hajdu (Thunder Bay-Superior North), tabled a back-to-work bill in the House of Commons earlier this week but stressed that the government would hold off debating the bill to give a special mediator time to settle the labour dispute. “The Liberal government did not come to the decision lightly,” Hajdu told the House of Commons after tabling the bill – along with a concurrent motion to fast-track the legislation if necessary. “We wouldn’t have come down this road, but we’ve exhausted every option,” she said. No specific date was given when Canadians can expect CUPW workers to be back on the job. But Canada Post said that we should expect delays of parcel and mail delivery into 2019 as a result of the rotating strikes.

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Tony Curcio is the editor of Graphic Arts Magazine.