Ontario unions say “enough is enough” as Bill 124 appeal hearings begin

TORONTO – Workers gathered in front of Osgoode Hall this morning as the Court of Appeal began the latest Bill 124 proceedings. Beginning today, the Court will hear the appeal of the Superior Court of Justice’s decision to strike down Bill 124.

Bill 124 caps public sector compensation at one per cent. Since it was introduced in 2019, it has had a devastating impact on workers – especially as the cost-of-living has skyrocketed. Last November, the Superior Court found that the Bill violated the fundamental constitutional rights to collectively bargain and to strike. A month later, the Ford government chose to appeal the decision.

“As we have said repeatedly: Bill 124 hurts workers and it hurts our public services,” said Patty Coates, Ontario Federation of Labour President. “Earlier this month, thousands of Ontarians mobilized to demand action on the simultaneous cost-of-living and health care crises. Instead of responding to these demands, this government is back in court using public dollars to fight workers.”

At today’s media event, leaders from unions representing hundreds of thousands of workers impacted by Bill 124 shared their disappointment with the Ford government’s decision to appeal the Superior Court’s ruling, highlighting the impact the Bill has had on the province’s public services.

“According to the government’s own documents, Bill 124 has worsened the staffing crisis in Ontario’s struggling health care system,” said Coates. She added, “The Ford government is determined to continue starving our public services while sitting on billions in excess funds,” referring to last week’s report by the Financial Accountability Office that the province will have $22.6 billion in “excess funds” over the next few years. “We’re fed up with the Ford government making bad situations even worse.”

Today’s speakers underscored that unions are confident in the public consensus that Bill 124 must go. “We know that Bill 124 is unconstitutional, and we know that Ontarians are feeling its effects,” added Coates. “Enough is enough, it’s time for Bill 124 to be scrapped for good.”

The Ontario Federation of Labour represents 54 unions and one million workers in Ontario. For information, visit www.OFL.ca and follow @OFLabour on Facebook and Twitter.

For more information, please contact:

Melissa Palermo
Communications Director
Ontario Federation of Labour
mpalermo@ofl.ca | 416-894-3456

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