Members will likely have heard that the Government has introduced Bill C-4 in Parliament which introduces sweeping changes to the Labour Relations Regime at the NRC. The vast majority of the legislation will affect the next round of bargaining but there are implications for current unsettled contracts at NRC.
Bill C-4 transitional provisions may have significant effects on Groups that are still in bargaining. If a Group does not have an arbitration panel established by the PSLRB before the coming into force of Bill C-4, the provisions of the new Act will apply. This means the changes with respect to essential services, choice of dispute resolution method and all the other changes to bargaining that the Conservative government is making. This could potentially impact five bargaining units, AD,AS, PG, OP and CS.
With respect to the AD, AS, PG and OP Groups, the RCEA has been waiting for a preliminary ruling by the PSLRB on jurisdictional objections raised by NRC. Due to the prospect that the changes to the legislation may pass before this decision is issued, the RCEA has decided to withdraw the proposals that NRC objected to. This means that there is no longer any need for the preliminary ruling. We have moved things forward for these groups. We expect that an Arbitration Board will shortly be established for these groups.
With respect to the CS group, we have applied for arbitration and are in the process of providing the required documentation for the establishment of the panel. We are hopeful that this can be achieved prior to the passage of the legislative changes.