NAPE calls for legislation in Newfoundland to end use of strikebreakers

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The Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Public and Private Employees (NAPE) is calling on the provincial government to introduce legislation that will prevent the use of replacement workers and strikebreakers during a legal strike.

NAPE President Carol Furlong

NAPE issued a news release today on the issue as the strike at Labatt Brewing Company (Labatt) in St. John’s is into its eighth month.

“The lack of such legislation has prolonged strikes and caused undue hardship for the working people of this province, including the workers who are currently on strike at Labatt in St. John’s,” said NAPE President Carol Furlong.  

She noted the provinces of Quebec and British Columbia have legislation in place which prevents the use of strikebreakers.

“We want the same provisions for workers in this province so that both parties are operating on a level playing field,” Furlong said.

“It does nothing for labour relations to have enduring strikes that would likely be resolved if there wasn’t interference from using strike breakers.

“Not so long ago a strike with Vale, another multi-billion dollar corporation, went on for over a year due the use of replacement workers. Only when the government intervened was this strike finally resolved.”

Organizations: Labatt, Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Public and Private Employees

Geographic location: Newfoundland, Quebec, British Columbia

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Recent comments

  • Old Fogey
    November 29, 2013 - 07:23

    If you want to have legislation in place banning the use of replacement workers, then you should also have legislation banning workers on strike from taking other jobs while on strike. That would make the field more level for both parties. If you felt the need to work elsewhere you should be considered to have quit your position with the employer you are on strike against.

  • Old Fogey
    November 29, 2013 - 07:22

    If you want to have legislation in place banning the use of replacement workers, then you should also have legislation banning workers on strike from taking other jobs while on strike. That would make the field more level for both parties. If you felt the need to work elsewhere you should be considered to have quit your position with the employer you are on strike against.

  • Jeremiah
    November 29, 2013 - 07:14

    We need legislation to end 'strikes" as a tool to settle labour dispute. Strikes are counterproductive and binding arbitration is a much better solution.

  • Jeremiah
    November 29, 2013 - 07:13

    We need legislation to end 'strikes" as a tool to settle labour dispute. Strikes are counterproductive and binding arbitration is a much better solution.

  • Jeremiah
    November 29, 2013 - 07:12

    We need legislation to end 'strikes" as a tool to settle labour dispute. Strikes are counterproductive and binding arbitration is a much better solution.

  • strikebreaker
    November 28, 2013 - 14:09

    HEY progressive i worked non union plenty of times and, I had vacation time ,family time and , i worked for more than 5 dollars an hour The only thing unions gave me was a loss off wages , loss of my pension, so those big fat Union bosses can sit on their fat lazy asses and still get a income Nothing Left But The Corruption Say No To Unions you guys are all Corrupt

  • Thomas
    November 28, 2013 - 12:08

    A strike with replacement worker's is an excellent way to baseline productivity and the bottom line. What Labatt's has learned through this strike is that with a significantly reduced and dedicated workforce the product, productivity, sales have not suffered and the occurrences of injuries + worker's comp claims have reduced. This will be very useful data for the company when after the strike they review their workforce requirement.

    • Not a scab worker
      November 28, 2013 - 13:22

      Thomas: Iguess you can't get any other employment but scab work. They will hire anybody with a pulse as a replacement worker, just remember it is a temporary job. Become a man and get a real job with benefits & pension or are you one of the managers told what to do and say.

    • sparky
      November 28, 2013 - 14:09

      Very well said Thomas, you would 'my vote' if you were running!

    • Newfoundlander
      November 28, 2013 - 14:41

      The union workers have nothing to worry about with replacement workers. These companies would hire anybody with a pulse. Replacement workers are temporary & can never do the job of a fulltime experience employee. Thats why strikes end!!!!These multinational companies want to reap the contracts. If the union wages go down so does the scabs wages next time around. Replacement workers can't find full-time employment because they are useless!!!!!!!

  • Progressive
    November 28, 2013 - 12:08

    To the strikebreaker and David: Perhaps we should all still be working for $5 an hour, no vacation, family time, pension or anything and take what we are given? Just remember what Union's gave you in the first place and if they need to make a stand every now and then you should support it. If you are not in the union but you consider yourself a strike breaker then you have failed in your employment search!

  • M
    November 28, 2013 - 11:50

    Legislating against non union workers right to work on a strike sight would be devastating to our business community. Every union would strike and hold us all for ransom. The legislation would prevent the company from continuing operations. Just as the union workers have the right to assemble and strike, non union workers have the right to work. Simple. As for BC and Quebec, these are provinces whose politics is funded and dominated by unions. Of course they gave in to the power of big union money. The idea that because two provinces out of 10 have this legislation we should follow is ridiculous. Thank God the NDP are not and will not be in power here for the foreseeable future.

    • Not union
      November 28, 2013 - 13:25

      If you treated your employees with respect and share the profits there would be no need to strike

    • Jack
      November 29, 2013 - 07:44

      I can not find one example anywhere that unions have ever held everyone for ransom (including places where strike breaking action is illegal). Can you please provide even one example of this? Because I can happily provide you proof that your logic is nonsense.

    • Jack
      November 29, 2013 - 07:49

      I can not find one example anywhere that unions have ever held everyone for ransom (including places where strike breaking action is illegal). Can you please provide even one example of this? Because I can happily provide you proof that your logic is nonsense.

  • Strikebreaker
    November 28, 2013 - 10:56

    The strike at Vale was not resolved because the Gov intervened Lana,It was resolved because of people like myself who crossed the picket line then more people crossed 15 in one week the union the Union was not long signing a deal then .and by the way we had a better offer from Vale on their first offer than the one we signed....Time to rid NL of corrupt Unions ...The Gov should bring in THE RIGHT TO WORK CLAUSE ...And if we do go on strike here at Voisey Bay i will be crossing the picket line in a week this time no Corrupt Unions r going to mtell me what i should work for i will make that decision on my own

    • Jeff
      November 28, 2013 - 11:21

      ...and yet you feel nothing about taking the wages, the benefits, and the rights those working beside you fought for while you stabbed them in the back. How can they stand to be near you?

    • Jeff
      November 28, 2013 - 11:23

      ...and yet you feel nothing about taking the wages, the benefits, and the rights those working beside you fought for while you stabbed them in the back. The boss is laughing at you, sucker.

    • Donald
      November 28, 2013 - 11:31

      ...and yet you feel nothing about taking the wages, the benefits, and the rights those working beside you fought for while you stabbed them in the back. The boss is laughing at you, sucker.

  • david
    November 28, 2013 - 10:46

    Strike breakers are often the only meaningful and effective way of making unionized workers aware that their demands are complete nonsense (as they always are) and that there are many., many other people quite willing to accept and perform those jobs quite productively and appreciatively. This fact is the only connection to economic reality that any of these blackmailers has, and even that isn't terribly effective. Take it away and see what happens.

    • Jack
      November 29, 2013 - 07:41

      Union demands are always complete nonsense? Why do feel this way? Please provide some proof that ALL union demands are nonsense. I am thankful for unions. Without unions I would not have holidays or wages that allow me to live. I would not have any safety at my workplace nor would I have the ability to retire. These are all things I am grateful for. I am not thankful to the steady stream of employers who constantly want to make more profit on the back of NL workers without contributing back to the economy.