Federal government resorts to heavy-handed tactics to stop union activity

    OTTAWA, June 19 /CNW Telbec/ - The Public Service Alliance of Canada
(PSAC) says the federal government has crossed the line in its attempts to
discourage protests against the government's recent wage offer.
    According to PSAC National President John Gordon, union members who work
for Treasury Board have been organizing activities across the country to
protest the insulting and inadequate wage offer the government put on the
table last month.
    "In recent days, Treasury Board and at least one of its departments have
sent out heavy-handed e-mails to our members in an attempt to discourage them
from participating in activities on June 19 and in union activity in general,"
says Gordon.
    "The government's warnings are not only a complete over-reaction to the
June 19 events, they cross the line by trying to intimidate workers from
exercising their constitutionally-protected union rights."
    The union has already filed a complaint with the Public Service Labour
Relations Board alleging unfair labour practices. PSAC is asking the Board to
order the employer to cease and desist from interfering in legitimate union
activities and to send a message to all employees confirming their right to
participate in their union's activities.
    The June 19 protests are taking place after more than a year of
negotiations with Treasury Board. To date, virtually nothing has been agreed
upon. At the end of May, Treasury Board offered increases of 1.5% and 1.2%
over a four-year agreement.
    "At our events today, you will find members describing the Treasury Board
offer as peanuts and crumbs," says Gordon. "The message they are sending to
their employer is that the offer is an insult and they deserve more."
    "From the recent e-mails, it appears that the employer is finally
starting to take notice of the fact that they have dissatisfied workers. It's
unfortunate they are more interested in quashing dissent than dealing with our
members' legitimate bargaining demands."
    Gordon says the government shouldn't confuse PSAC members with their own
caucus. "You may be able to muzzle your MPs but you can't silence our members
and their union."

    PSAC represents over 100,000 workers in five Treasury Board bargaining
units. Most of the agreements expired almost a year ago, in June 2007. The
latest bargaining information is posted on the union's web site at

For further information:

For further information: Denis Boivin, PSAC Communications, (613)

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