MEDIA RELEASE: Future State of Essential Services

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – December 5, 2013

Saskatoon – Members and leaders of SEIU-West are very interested in the new version of the essential services law introduced as Bill 128 in the Saskatchewan provincial legislature on December 4, 2013. It appears that a number of changes will improve the law. However, some hurdles remain.

“SEIU-West has always promoted fair legislation. We continue to take the position that essential services negotiations should not begin with the employer setting out specific classifications and numbers that will be necessary to deliver essential services,” said SEIU-West President Barbara Cape. “We also see the expansion of the scope of the law as a future problem that will need to be addressed.”

SEIU-West has been very vocal about their members’ concerns with the law and has actively participated in the legislative review process.

“We see an improvement in what items need to be considered during the negotiations of essential services as well as the potential resolve for collective bargaining impasse issues,” said SEIU-West Treasurer Janice Platzke. “We have proposed the use of binding interest arbitration as the most effective way to resolve collective bargaining issues when negotiations break down. Though the process of obtaining this third party assistance does seem long, we hope that having access to arbitration will motivate all parties to achieve timely and fair settlements.”

“SEIU-West will take the time to do a complete review of the Bill and provide our feedback to the government,” added Cape. “We hope that continued discussions with the government will lead to a process that works for both our members and for the people of Saskatchewan.”

SEIU-West represents more than thirteen thousand working people in the province of Saskatchewan. They include members who work in healthcare, education, municipalities, community-based organizations, retirement homes and other sectors.

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For more information, contact:

Christine Miller, Communications Coordinator
Phone: 306.652.1011 ext. 2250

For a printable PDF of this release, click on the link below:

Media Release: Future State of Essential Services

 

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