1684004677 Sector Unions shocked by pay hike for elected officials

Sector | Unions shocked by pay hike for elected officials –

(Sherbrooke) Dissatisfied with the progress of negotiations, the common front of public sector unions is growing impatient and threatening a strike.

Posted at 1:11pm, updated at 2:48pm.


Patrice Bergeron The Canadian Press

Union members are particularly outraged by the $30,000 increase in elected officials’ pay that the Legault administration plans to pass through a bill introduced this week.

Thousands of union members demonstrated on Saturday in front of the Sherbrooke Exhibition Center, where François Legault’s Coalition avenir Québec (CAQ) meeting is being held this weekend.

“We demand a $100-a-week raise for all government employees, they give themselves a $582-a-week raise and tell us the $100 is too much!” the first lamented Vice-President of the Confederation of National Trade Unions (CSN), François Enault, in an interview with The Canadian Press with the other union leaders during the demonstration.

“One day, what’s good for Kitty will be good for Kitty!” »

The congress was held under close surveillance and the demonstrators were kept very far away from the demonstrators by an imposing barricade, a large police presence on foot and on horseback, searches at the entrance to the building, etc.

But union members had a message for the assembled CAQ activists to support the government and express their confidence in François Legault.

“When activists of the same party are together, everything is fine, we pat each other on the back, but it is important to see that there are real people out there, people working for the people of Quebec,” argued the president of the Alliance of Professional and Technical Health Personnel (APTS), Robert Comeau.

Union leaders complained that negotiations are only making headway on issues the government wants to settle, but not on issues workers want to settle.

“If the government is spinning around with two or three priorities while we have several, we cannot move forward,” commented Centrale des Unions du Québec (CSQ) President Éric Gingras.

Sector Unions shocked by pay hike for elected officials


The President of the Central Trade Unions of Quebec (CSQ), Éric Gingras

Mr. Enault believes the only negotiating table at which the employer is currently asking its employees to step down in Quebec is between the government and public sector workers.

“There are no negotiations in the private sector where we are asking for cuts while the government is asking us for cuts in pensions. This is unacceptable!” ”

The unions criticize the slowness of the negotiations and are in the process of mobilizing the troops.

“We are preparing the movement and in the autumn we will certainly go to our members to consult them if things are not going well and if we have to go there there will be a strike,” Mr assured. ginger grass

“The aim is not to go on strike, we are preparing for it,” said Mr Comeau, recalling that staging a public sector strike requires at least six months of preparation.

“We don’t want to go there, we still think we can handle the tables.” [de négociations], but we prepare everything the same way, we have no choice. »

The contracts of 600,000 state employees expired on March 31.

Quebec has so far offered wage increases of 9% over five years, plus a $1,000 lump sum and a 2.5% amount reserved for “government priorities.” Quebec therefore says it will submit an offer of up to 13% over five years.

For its part, the common front is calling for an increase of $100 per week, or the consumer price index (CPI) plus 2% for the first year of employment contracts, whichever formula is most beneficial to workers, then the CPI plus 3%. for the second year and CPI plus 4% for the third year.