OTTAWA, Feb. 11, 2016 /CNW/ - The Mounted Police Professional Association of Canada (MPPAC) took a huge step forward this week in fighting to protect the health, safety and dignity of current members of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), by announcing it will be the Respondent in an appeal brought forward by RCMP Management.
RCMP Management has failed to comply with corrective direction issued under Part II of the Canadian Labour Code (CLC) following an investigation by Officials delegated by the Minister of Labour, into the St. Albert shooting incident in January 2015.
"MPPAC was invited by the federal Occupational Health and Safety Tribunal to act as the Respondent in this appeal, and has agreed to be the Respondent in this matter to ensure the RCMP complies with the law, found under the Health and Safety provisions under Part II of the CLC," said MPPAC's President Rae Banwarie. "We believe this is the right thing to do because when police officers' safety is put at risk, the community's safety is also placed at risk."
A federal department of labour investigation was completed after the fatal shooting of Constable David Wynn who was on duty inside a St. Albert casino, as well as the wounding of officer Auxiliary Cst. Derek Bond. Mandatory directions made are being appealed by the RCMP. "Our women and men police Canada unselfishly and dedicate their lives to ensure the safety and well-being of all Canadians," Banwarie said.
This isn't the first time RCMP management have faced labour code violations. There are still four charges against the RCMP management before the courts in the case of the Moncton incident. This week the RCMP have finally announced they are complying with 42 out of 64 recommendations from the 2014 Moncton incident, made by retired RCMP Assistant Commissioner Alphonse MacNeil.
"This raises the question: if the RCMP believe it's the right thing to do to comply with recommendations following Moncton to ensure the safety of RCMP members and the public, why are they now appealing the findings from the investigation from St. Albert?" said Rob Creasser spokesperson for the Association.
"These cases involving the RCMP management highlight the need for officers to have dedicated union protection to ensure the safety of our members and avert further tragedies to our front line officers and communities," said Creasser.
MPPAC has been fighting for the right of RCMP members to engage in collective bargaining through an independent association, and the Government of Canada now has until the end of May 2016 to pass legislation that will grant collective bargaining rights to RCMP members, based on the Supreme Court of Canada's ruling last year.
It is paramount that RCMP members across Canada remain protected under Part II of the Canada Labour Code, and MPPAC has vigilantly fought against efforts to have members removed by the government of the day through past proposed legislation like Bill C-58.
MPPAC's success is attributable to the work of its founding fathers, Michel Funicelli and Brendan McKenna who created and led the E Division Members Association, (EDMA) in the 1990s which is now MPPAC, our national association. Other groups who contributed in this fight were the Mounted Police Association of Ontario (MPAO), the Association Des Membres De La Police Montee Du Quebec, (AMPMQ) and the late Neil Jessop (past president of the Canadian Police Association).
SOURCE Mounted Police Professional Association of Canada
For further information: Rob Creasser, Media Relations, Mounted Police Professional Association of Canada, T: (250) 371-1071, E: firstname.lastname@example.org