Changes to the Public Sector Labour Relations Transition Act (PSLTRA) have union workers pleading with the Ontario government.
The changes, announced in the 2015 provincial budget, rule that workers can be moved between unions without a vote if one union represents 60 per cent or more of the potential members.
In sectors like health, where restructuring is occurring across the province, workers feel their rights are already restricted. If workers lose the right to decide which union will represent them, says Michael Hurley, president of OCHU/CUPE, a basic constitutional right will have been breached.
“To take away the right of employees to decide which union will represent them is completely unjustified and unacceptable and trounces a basic constitutional right- the right to choose union representation democratically,” he says. “In all of these instances workers should not be told which union they will join, they should have the right to choose their union themselves.”
To combat the changes, CUPE’s Ontario Council of Hospital Unions/CUPE (OCHU) is beginning a campaign to raise awareness and demand protection for their rights.