Give Workers the Freedom to Choose
During the recent Quebec provincial election, the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC), representing Canada’s impartial public service, voiced their support for candidates running for the Québec solidaire and Part Québecois political parties. Both of these provincial parties seek to break up the country.
When this came to my attention I immediately started a campaign to give unionized employees in federally-regulated workplaces the right to opt out of paying union dues. I cannot accept a union forcefully taking money out of the pockets of Canada’s public servants in order to support political parties whose avowed goal is Quebec separation. This is not in the best interests of anyone who works in the federal public service.
For years, the constituents in my riding have raised this issue. One gentleman approached me recently to express his frustration with PSAC because they had given $5000 to support the students protesting in Montreal about tuition fees. These students were destructive and caused harm to the city, while their actions were completely unrelated to any federal workplace.
According to the Ottawa Sun, PSAC spent $1,694,900 on political action in 2011. This money came entirely from the pockets of federal public servants whether they agreed with the cause or not. If our 186,000 unionized public servants had the option to choose if they pay dues to PSAC, the union would be forced to put members’ interests first, rather than further their own agenda.
Section two of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms protects freedom of speech, but we are not forced to speak. The same section protects freedom of religion, but yet again we are not forced to be religious. When it comes to freedom of association however, some people are forced to associate. In Canada, employees in unionized workplaces are obliged to pay union dues even if they do not agree with the actions of the union.
Isn’t it time we gave workers the freedom to choose? If you agree, please contact my office to sign the Petition to the Government of Canada for Workers’ Freedom.
Please take a look at this video. I welcome your thoughts on this issue and am proud to serve as your Member of Parliament.