People standing in front of cameras at a press conference CUPE Quebec is finally celebrating a major event that enhances the rights of workers across the country. The House of Commons, on third reading, unanimously passed anti-scab legislation.

CUPE 2614, the union representing Port of Quebec longshore workers locked out for more than 20 months now, and members of CUPE 2815, representing Videotron workers in Gatineau, who have also been locked out for 7 months, attended this historic vote.

“Both of these groups spearheaded the fight to pass anti-scab legislation. If it had existed in the past, these people wouldn’t be out on the street. They have often said, and I repeat it one more time, that they were not the first ones to be adversely affected by the absence of this legislation, but we hope they’ll be the last,” said Frédéric Brisson, the secretary general of CUPE Quebec.

This new legislation will restore the power balance between the employer and the union at the bargaining table. Quebec passed anti-scab legislation in 1977, and it is high time that federal workers reap the benefits of such legislation.

In March 2022, the Liberal government, as part of the Supply and Confidence Agreement reached with the NDP, pledged to table legislation prohibiting the use of strike breakers during strikes and lockouts.

“For far too long, too many employers in the federal sector would resort to using strike breakers to undermine our fundamental right to collective bargaining. We are thrilled for the thousands of workers who will benefit from this recalibration,” added Marie-Hélène Bélanger, the director of CUPE Quebec.