SURREY, BC, July 9, 2016 /CNW/ - The Mounted Police Professional Association of Canada (MPPAC) continues to stand up for the rights and interests of Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) members to ensure their employer complies with health and safety recommendations following a situation which resulted in the shooting and death of RCMP Constable David Wynn, and shooting injuries to Auxiliary Constable Derek Bond in January 2015.
Earlier this year, RCMP management attempted to block MPPAC from having any status in the RCMP's appeal of the direction issued by Economic Skills and Development Canada (federal agency mandated for oversight of health and safety of federal employees) as a result of an investigation regarding this matter. However, this week the Occupational Health and Safety Tribunal of Canada ruled in favour of MPPAC being granted intervener status.
"Not only has RCMP management appealed the lawful directions issued by ESDC to ensure the health and safety of employees, but they also tried to prevent us from participating in the appeal process," said MPPAC President Rae Banwarie. "MPPAC believes that members should not be prejudiced and denied their rights to have their health and safety matters fully and robustly represented, which is why we made our best efforts to be granted standing in this matter."
The health and safety recommendations made by ESDC in late 2015 include:
- having safe alternative communication procedures for situations where radios are known to fail or not transmit or receive messages clearly;
- ensuring that equipment used by employees is safe under all conditions of its intended use;
- identifying, assessing and taking measures to prevent hazards associated
- with its communications system;
- ensuring that activities of every person granted access to a workplace do not endanger their health and safety.
"This is just one of many examples showing that RCMP management has failed to provide front line officers with appropriate equipment, training and safety protocols to do their jobs safely," said MPPAC spokesperson Terry McKee. "This is yet another case – like those including Moncton and Mayerthorpe – which highlights the need for officers to have a dedicated, independent police association which will ensure processes and safeguards are in place to avert further tragedies from occurring.
MPPAC strongly believes that in this appeal case, the interests of justice will be best served now that our Association is able to respond to the employer's appeal. MPPAC will now be able to provide the perspective from our members who are directly affected.
McKee added: "When RCMP officers' health and safety are at risk, they are unable to do their jobs effectively and public safety is jeopardized. MPPAC understands how significant this is."
MPPAC is a national, non-profit police association which has been representing and assisting members since its inception (E-Div. Members Association in 1994). MPPAC has always been independent of management and has never been comprised of any individuals who were part of the management-controlled (SRR) program ruled unconstitutional by the SCC and now defunct. MPPAC does not seek nor support the right to strike and is seeking to become the certified bargaining agent for all non-commissioned members of the RCMP.
SOURCE Mounted Police Professional Association of Canada
For further information: Terry McKee, Media Relations, Mounted Police Professional Association of Canada, Association Canadienne Professionnelle de la Police Montée, T: (506) 850-3907, E: [email protected]; Rob Creasser, Media Relations, Mounted Police Professional Association of Canada, Association Canadienne Professionnelle de la Police Montée, T: (250) 371-1071, E: [email protected]