Alberta Labour Law Once Again Stomps on Workers Rights



    LRB Decision Stripping Carpenters of Right to Strike an "outrage"

    EDMONTON, Sept. 7 /CNW/ - The decision rendered this morning by the
Alberta Labour Relations Board (LRB) declaring the strike notice filed by the
Carpenters union invalid is the latest example of how Alberta's labour laws
illegitimately restrict fundamental rights for Alberta workers.
    "The LRB decision this morning is an outrage," says AFL President Gil
McGowan, "but the main culprit in this injustice is Alberta's horrible labour
laws."
    "The carpenters acted appropriately and democratically in their efforts
to stand up for their members," observes McGowan. "In any jurisdiction with
truly free and open collective bargaining, they would be in a legal position
to strike today. However, we live in Alberta, where workers are not afforded
even the most basis of rights."
    McGowan states the decision takes an unnecessarily narrow interpretation
of the sections of the Labour Code at question in the case. However, he
suggests, the primary problem is the convoluted and restrictive rules
governing bargaining and the right to strike in the construction sector.
    "You need a masters degree in mathematics to understand all the numerical
requirements in the construction part of the Code," notes McGowan. "The
multitude of roadblocks, hoops and hurdles in the law are designed explicitly
and intentionally to prevent workers from expressing their democratic right to
strike."
    "And that," says McGowan, "leads us straight to the doors of the
legislature and the Alberta government. They created a bad law that must be
changed."
    "I take my hat off to the thousands of carpenters in Alberta for trying
to exercise their democratic right to strike," says McGowan. "And I say to the
rest of Albertans that it is time to force the Conservatives to change the
labour laws."





For further information:

For further information: Gil McGowan, AFL President, (780) 218-9888
(cell)

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Alberta Federation of Labour

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