Public & Private Law

Doug Ford to enchantment choice on Invoice 124

The Ontario authorities intends to enchantment a court docket’s choice that struck down a controversial invoice that restricted wages for public sector staff.

A spokesperson for the Legal professional Normal informed CP24 that “we’re reviewing the choice. Our intention is to enchantment.”

Justice Markus Koehnen delivered his 80-page choice Tuesday afternoon, saying Invoice 124 infringes on the candidates’ rights to freedom of affiliation and collective bargaining.

“The Constitution protects not simply the precise to affiliate but additionally the precise to a significant course of through which unions can placed on the desk these points which can be of concern to staff and have them mentioned in good religion,” Koehnen stated.

A number of unions and staff affected by the invoice have been combating the laws that got here into impact in 2019 and capped wage will increase to at least one per cent a yr for 3 years.

The federal government had stated the invoice was a time-limited strategy to assist remove the province’s deficit.

Final September, teams representing 1000’s of public sector workers went to court docket to battle the constitutionality of the invoice.

The teams argued the invoice violates a bit of the Canadian Constitution of Rights and Freedoms that protects significant collective bargaining.

The province, nonetheless, argued the invoice doesn’t intrude with the teams’ means to discount for job safety, advantages and seniority.

After a protracted battle to get to right this moment’s choice, Registered Nurses’ Affiliation of Ontario CEO Doris Grinspun stated she is urging Premier Doug Ford to not enchantment.

“Please don’t enchantment, premier, to the court docket’s choice. You already know the state of affairs in Ontario and with the scarcity of staff all over the place, and specifically within the health-care area. And extra so even in nursing. Please don’t, don’t enchantment the invoice,” Grinspun informed CP24.

Interim chief of the Liberal Occasion of Ontario, John Fraser, agreed that the federal government shouldn’t enchantment and as an alternative ought to work with unions to come back to an settlement.

“The federal government should not enchantment this ruling. It ought to simply sit down with all the employees affected and are available to a good deal,” he informed reporters at Queen’s Park.

Each the Inexperienced Occasion and the NDP additionally launched statements calling on Ford to not enchantment right this moment’s choice.

In response to the choice, Unifor, Canada’s largest non-public sector union, tweeted it will likely be “looking for cures for affected members.”

In the meantime, The Elementary Academics’ Federation of Ontario stated in an announcement that it continues to interact within the central bargaining course of with the federal government, the Ontario Public College Boards’ Affiliation, and the Council of Trustees’ Associations.


The court docket’s choice comes after frontline health-care staff held a rally outdoors of Toronto’s Sunnybrook Hospital Tuesday afternoon to proceed their battle for higher wages and extra staffing to handle the continued hospital disaster throughout the province.

“It has been a protracted three years…We have been overworked and it has been fixed. We have been brief. You already know, it has been robust,” Working Room Assistant Sherica Washington stated.

Dozens of staff attended the rally outdoors of the hospital, together with registered sensible nurses, private assist staff, dietary, housekeeping, sterilization employees, porters and clerical employees.

Doug Ford to enchantment choice on Invoice 124An Ontario court docket has struck down a Ford authorities invoice that restricted wages for public sector staff. (The Canadian Press)

Staff might be heard chanting “kill that invoice” and waving flags and indicators that stated “Respect us. Defend us. Pay us.”

The union that represents them, SEIU Healthcare, organized the protest to reiterate their requires motion towards Invoice 124.

“I simply suppose we’d like some respect. Like a 24-cent an hour elevate after what we have been via over COVID, these final three years have been horrible. And so they’re saying they are going to give us 24 cents. Come on,” Paul Johnson, a private assist employee, informed CP24.

Union leaders spoke on the rally and urged the federal government to scrap the invoice so the union may negotiate honest compensation for his or her members.

SEIU Healthcare union members protest outdoors of Sunnybrook Hospital in Toronto on Nov. 29, 2022.

“Bear in mind when Ford known as you heroes? What does he do? His authorities introduces and passes Invoice 124, which now retains you from getting that hero’s pay and squashes your means to discount pretty,” SEIU Government Vice President Mina Amrith stated.

As well as, the SEIU and different affected unions stated the invoice must be repealed now as it’s contributing to a extreme nursing scarcity.

“Everybody has been in the reduction of. Persons are leaving in droves. The sufferers haven’t got the care they’re imagined to have with much less of us there,” Registered Sensible Nurse Tanya Rahim-Juttlah stated.

“You possibly can solely take a lot. Everybody has a breaking level. Each single well being–care employee right here is at a breaking level and individuals are deciding ought to I keep? Ought to I am going?” she added.

The SEIU can be calling on the federal government to spice up frontline staffing to handle elevated wait instances, and to speculate new funding in public hospitals and limit the usage of non-public health-care.

In line with the SEIU, latest studies say Sunnybrook Well being Sciences Centre had the second-longest wait instances, adopted by the Hospital for Sick Kids in Toronto.

“We ain’t failing right here. It is Doug Ford and his plan that’s failing. Every certainly one of us, we aren’t handled with respect, the safety and the pay that we deserve and so right this moment we are saying sufficient is sufficient,” Sanjay Thapa, SEIU chief steward, stated.

Ontario Premier Doug Ford and Solicitor Normal Sylvia Jones reply questions after touring the COVID-19 testing centre in Terminal 3 at Pearson Airport in Toronto on Wednesday, February 3, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn

Prior to now month, a number of hospitals throughout the province have been warning sufferers about elevated wait instances and a few have been cancelling or decreasing non-emergent surgical procedures on account of greater demand associated to a rise in flu, RSV and COVID-19 circumstances.

The rally comes nearly every week after the leaders from 5 of Ontario’s largest health-care unions, together with SEIU, issued an enchantment to the Doug Ford authorities saying that their plan is “failing miserably.”

The Ontario authorities has stated it can add as much as 6,000 extra health-care staff and unencumber 2,500 hospital beds as a part of its plan to stabilize the health-care system that was launched in August.

The plan additionally included an funding in non-public clinics that may supply OHIP-covered surgical procedures, and laws that may unencumber acute care beds by transferring seniors to long-term care properties, which is not going to be of their selecting.

With recordsdata from The Canadian Press

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