Faced with ongoing employer pressure for concessions and two-tier contracts, CUPE’s National Executive Board is working to ensure our locals are equipped to stand firm and resist the rise of precarious employment, with an updated bargaining policy.

More than a third of Canadian workers are in contract, temporary or part-time jobs, or face irregular hours, low pay and few or no benefits. Women, low-income, young and racialized workers are more likely to be in precarious jobs. There’s been a significant increase in precarious work in the public sector, with the share of public sector workers on temporary contracts up by about 50 per cent. One-quarter of CUPE members are considered to be in precarious jobs.

Employers are increasingly demanding rollbacks to job security, wages, benefits and pensions. Restructuring and privatization add to the downward pressure. We are seeing governments claim they are facing a fiscal crisis and uncertain finances, while doing little to close tax loopholes or reverse tax cuts.

“We must resist concessions, two-tier contract provisions, and precarious work. If a contract provision is not good enough for our current members, it is not good enough for the next generation of workers,” said CUPE National President Mark Hancock.

CUPE’s revised policy focuses on member engagement and mobilization, strengthening solidarity between locals, and coordinated bargaining.

“Together as members, staff and leaders at all levels, we will send a strong and forceful message to our employers. United, we can oppose concessions and defend our free collective bargaining rights,” said CUPE National Secretary-Treasurer Charles Fleury.