The Ontario Federation of Labour (OFL) condemns the overreach of Ottawa police, following the arrest of a union leader on a lawful picket line of striking Non-Public Funds (NPF) workers, who are represented by the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC-AFPC).
Since January 15, hundreds of NFP workers, who provide critical support services to Canadian Forces members, their families, and veterans at Canadian Forces facilities, have been on strike for fair wages, equal pay, and improved job security. These workers, mostly women, were engaged in lawful and peaceful strike activity on a picket line when the arrest took place.
“The right to strike is a constitutionally protected right in Canada,” said Laura Walton, President of the OFL. “Whenever that right comes under attack, the labour movement in its entirety must push back.
“This kind of police heavy-handedness is a clear intimidation tactic that, alarmingly, we also see beyond picket lines to undermine dissent, free speech, and other protected rights. That’s why we oppose it,” added Walton.
The striking workers are among the most precarious and low-paid in the federal public service, and deserve fairness and equity.
The OFL urges trade union members and decent work campaigners to take these steps to support the striking NPF workers:
- Click here to email Minister of National Defence Bill Blair and President of the Treasury Board Anita Anand to direct their negotiators to get a fair deal for these workers.
- Where possible, join a picket line near you. Click here for picket line locations.
- Call Ian Poulter, CEO of Canadian Forces Morale and Welfare Services, (CFMWS) and demand fairness for the striking workers: 613-996-3111.
More information about the strike is available here.