NDP

Stephen McNeil must repeal Bill 148 and negotiate in good faith

October 5, 2016


For Immediate Release

HALIFAX – Nova Scotia’s teachers rejected a tentative agreement for a second time last night, demonstrating that Stephen McNeil’s bullying approach to labour negotiations has failed. Teachers voted 70 per cent against the proposed contract. In late 2015, teachers voted 61 per cent against a previous tentative agreement.

“Stephen McNeil’s approach to public sector bargaining has failed. Threatening teachers, nurses and other public sector workers with Bill 148 is disrespectful to tens of thousands of hard-working Nova Scotians,” said NDP Labour Critic Dave Wilson.

Bill 148 was passed in December 2015, but has yet to be proclaimed. The bill legislates a two-year wage freeze and removes workers’ rights to access a neutral third-party arbitrator. Several experts have said that the legislation, in all probability, is unconstitutional.

Minister of Education Karen Casey immediately rejected going back to the table, showing the ongoing disrespect the McNeil government has for teachers and their work. The NDP Caucus has voted against every piece of anti-union legislation proposed by the Liberals.

“The NDP remains committed to repealing Bill 148 and other legislation that unfairly targets public sector workers,” says NDP Leader Gary Burrill. “Stephen McNeil needs to respect free and fair collective bargaining, respect teachers, and get back to the negotiating table.”

Today, October 5, is World Teachers’ Day.  The NDP Caucus would like to thank teachers for all they do and acknowledges the dedication and hard work of teachers across our province.

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For more information, contact Kaley Kennedy at 902-229-6881 or kaley.kennedy@novascotia.ca.