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April 29th, 2021

The NDP Denounces the Liberal Betrayal of Workers' Rights

In the early hours of Thursday morning, the Liberals and Conservatives passed a profoundly unfair back-to-work bill for the longshoremen at the Port of Montreal.

OTTAWA — NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh and NDP Deputy Leader Alexandre Boulerice are denouncing in the strongest possible terms the special back-to-work legislation for longshoremen at the Port of Montreal that the Liberals and Conservatives passed yesterday in an unwarranted assault on workers' rights.

"It's outrageous how the Liberals have no moral conscience and no regard for workers' rights," said Singh. "They claim to support a fair collective bargaining process, but at the first opportunity they undermine workers' fundamental rights by denying them leverage and tipping the balance of power in favour of the employer’s side. "

During the debates in the House, the NDP, seeing that the Liberals and the Conservatives were going to join forces to pass the bill, passed an amendment to remove the clauses that allowed the arbitrator to cut short any negotiations and simply ask for final offers from both parties. Clauses that would have disadvantaged workers.

"If the government were truly in favour of workers' rights to collective bargaining, the Liberals would not have included a clause in their bill that would have ended the bargaining process," said Boulerice. "This is Liberal hypocrisy at its best. By denying workers their right to strike, Mr. Trudeau is removing the threat of a shutdown at the port. There is no longer any reason to unduly obstruct collective bargaining."

The Liberals will have to understand that there are serious consequences for interfering with workers' fundamental rights. New Democrats will continue to fight and to stand up to the Liberals who only care about the interests of the wealthiest and the elite.

Canadian workers deserve better.