The Public Service Alliance of Canada was back in court November 17-18 to appeal the previous Conservative government’s Bill C-10, the Expenditure Restraint Act. Adopted in 2009, it rolled back negotiated wage rates for federal public sector workers.
Government Expenditure Restraint Act
- Restricted increases in rates of pay to 2.5%, 2.3%, 1.5%, 1.5% and 1.5% in each year between 2006-2011 for Treasury Board employees and all other government-affiliated agencies.
- Explicitly stated the rollback of any wage increases.
- Negotiated collective agreements that provided increases greater than those set out were deemed null and void.
- Impacted thousands of PSAC members in several bargaining units, including the Canada Revenue Agency. There the bargaining team had negotiated wage increases of 2.5% for 2007-2009. Bill C-10 rolled back the negotiated settlement.
PSAC court challenge
- On April 7, 2009, PSAC filed an application with the Ontario Superior Court arguing the legislation violated the charter rights of our members under section 2(d) “freedom of association.”
- The Court ruled the legislation did not breach the charter. The PSAC then filed an appeal of that decision on March 19, 2014.
Court of Appeal decision
We are awaiting for the Court of Appeal for Ontario decision. PSAC will provide an update once the outcome of the appeal is known.