Fri. Mar 1st, 2024

A lower court ruled that “Law 124” was unconstitutional, but the Court of Appeal clarifies that it is only for unionized state employees.

Bill 124 in Ontario is partly unconstitutional.

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Premier Doug Ford argued that Bill 124 was intended to restore Ontario's financial health. (Archive photo)

  • Jean-Philippe Nadeau (View profile)Jean-Philippe Nadeau

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New defeat of the Ford government in court: the Ontario Court of Appeal rules that “Bill 124” on the quasi-freeze of salaries in the public sector of the province is indeed unconstitutional.

In a 154-page ruling, Ontario's highest court says the law significantly infringes on the right to participate in good faith in negotiations and consultations over the working conditions of public servants.

The decision was not unanimous, however, since a judge sided with the government.

The only downside, however: the Court of Appeal considers that the lower court made an error, recalling that the law is unconstitutional only for unionized employees in the public and parapublic sectors and not for all employees.< /p>LoadingExplosion of costs for the ArriveCAN application: shortcomings all along the line

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The court writes that the idea that non-unionized workers have rights under section 2d of the Charter on Freedom of Association is unknown in Canadian law.

The entire law is therefore not unconstitutional, as the Ontario Superior Court ruled in November 2022.

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Hospital workers launched a postcard campaign to demand the repeal of the law. (File photo)

The law limited the increases of more than a million employees, whether civil servants, nurses or workers, to 1% per year for three years. x27;teachers.

The Superior Court had ruled Law 124 unconstitutional following legal action by unions, who argued that its provisions violated their rights to collective bargaining.

The Ford government, however, took the case to the highest court in the province. The Progressive Conservatives argue that the salary cap was necessary to reduce the provincial debt.

Many nurses and education unions had nevertheless obtained retroactive salary increases in arbitration before the Court of Appeal rendered its decision on Monday.

More details to come .

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