There are a few proposed changes to the BC Labour Relations Code which may be in effect as early as the end of this month.
A link to the changes is provided for below.
A quick summary of the key changes are:
- Picketing – replaces the definition with language that expressly excludes leafletting. This likely just puts in writing what case law has already determined
- Unfair labour practice – removes exception for right of employer to express its views from prohibited interference with formation or administration of trade union
- Communication – removes right of employer to express views, and replaces with right to communicate statement of fact or opinion reasonably held
- Unfair labour practice remedy – allows for remedial certification where considered just and equitable
- Certification vote – to be held within 5 days of application, instead of 10
- New union – may seek end to collective agreement if 2 years or more left on term
- Decertification – application cannot be brought until 12 months from certification
- Contract for services successorship – retroactive to May 1 makes any future contractor bound by certification and collective agreement
- Freeze – extends statutory freeze prohibiting change to terms of employment to 12 months after certification from 4 months
- Penalty – increases potential penalties against individuals or companies to $5000 or $50000 respectively
Bill 30 – Labour Relations Code Amendment Act, 2019 had its First Reading on April 30. Expandable ‘Explanatory notes’ are provided within this First Reading version of the bill.
Ministry of Labour news release, “Restoring fairness and stability to British Columbia’s worksites” (April 30, 2019):
“Greater protections for workers, job security, labour rights and stability for employers are the focus of amendments to the Labour Relations Code.”
A Backgrounder on “Labour Relations Code amendments” is provided at the end of the news release.
Please feel free to contact our Labour + Employment Practice Group if you have any questions about the proposed changes, or how they may affect your business.