Legal News

Ontario Government Proposes Amendments to Provincial Labour Laws

The Ontario government recently introduced Bill 144, the Labour Relations Statute Law Amendment Act, 2004. The proposed amendments repeal many of the changes made to the Labour Relations Act, 1995 by the former Conservative government.

The proposed amendments:

  • repeal the requirement that unionized employers post and distribute information outlining procedures for union decertification and make such information available to workers on request;
  • restore the Ontario Labour Relations Board’s (“OLRB”) authority to order automatic certification where an employer commits a violation of the Act during a union organizing drive;
  • repeal the requirement for unions and other labour organizations to disclose names and salaries of all directors, officers and employees earning $100,000 or more in the previous year;
  • restore the right of trade unions in the construction industry to chose between vote-based or card-based certification; a card-based system allows a union to be certified without a representation vote if it secures the support of fifty-five percent or more of the employees in the proposed bargaining unit; restore the OLRB’s power to dismiss an application for certification where a union violates the Act during an organizing campaign;
  • restore the OLRB’s ability to reinstate, on an interim basis, workers who were fired or disciplined due to their efforts during a union organizing campaign, subject to certain conditions.

Bill 144 is not retroactive and is not yet in force.