On Tuesday, thanks to the tireless advocacy of CUPE members and our union allies, federal anti-scab legislation passed second reading in the House of Commons. Our allies in the NDP, who have been instrumental in leveraging their supply and confidence agreement with the Liberal government to pass this legislation, have once again shown us they are fighting for workers. And while we are pleased that the legislation is moving forward, it’s not perfect. There are loopholes still that employers can use to undermine workers’ rights, and we are asking that those be closed.

In a time when workers need better job security, better wages, and better working conditions, this bill will strengthen the collective bargaining power of union members fighting to put food on the table. Scabs prolong lockouts and strikes, break down relationships at the bargaining table, and remove employers’ incentive to reach a fair deal with union members. By banning the use of scabs, we move towards fairer contracts, stronger relationships, and healthier workplaces.

This fight is not over. For years, conservatives and liberals alike have obstructed, blocked, and watered-down similar legislation, all while attacking and undermining worker’s rights. Over the past 15 years, nine similar anti-scab bills have been tabled, and each time the Liberals and Conservatives blocked these bills from becoming law. CUPE members remember, as do our allies in the labour movement. We will keep fighting until this bill becomes law, and after to protect it from any government that tries to undermine workers’ rights in the future.