Labour may have hard time growing in 2013: Unions

Privacy, harassment, pensions, wages continue to be hot-button issues this year
By Sheldon Gordon
|Canadian Labour Reporter|Last Updated: 01/22/2013

Labour experts foresee an uneven pattern to collective bargaining in 2013, based on a gap between unions defending relatively secure workers, who may take a more aggressive approach to negotiations, and unions acting for relatively vulnerable workers, who may settle their contracts more readily.

On the organizing front, some union leaders expect the economy to make it difficult for unions to expand into new workplaces.

“Job security for unorganized workers is important, and when you have the kind of tactics utilized by employers to discourage workers from being organized, it is an extra hurdle that we have to overcome,” says Wayne Hanley, president of United Food and Commercial Workers Canada (UFCW), one of the country’s largest private-sector unions.