Saint John, August 29 – Today in Fallsview park, Jennifer McKenzie with Keith Leblanc (NDP candidate for Fundy-the-Isles – Saint John West) announced that the NDP is committed to standing up for workers’ rights and will take leadership on fundamental reform of our labour laws in this province so that people have stable work, are paid a fair wage, and are protected when they get sick.

“What the NDP is announcing is a new approach to workers rights, one that puts workers first. Both workers and employers do better when they are supported by legislation that protects their rights and clearly states their responsibilities.” – Jennifer McKenzie

Pay equity

The NDP will immediately implement a pay equity process in the private sector and public sector, starting with community care sector.

“We need a law for the private sector right now or else these discriminatory practices that affect half of New Brunswickers will continue.There should no longer be discrimination of any kind in workplaces. Liberals admitted that they did not keep their promise to implement pay equity, this is what this government has done time and time again, they have let all workers, but especially women, down.’’ – Jennifer McKenzie

For workers without unions

The well-being of non unionized workers is nowhere to be found in the priorities of this government. We must address the working lives of the majority of New Brunswickers who do not have union contracts. An NDP government will implement a $15 minimum wage and conduct a comprehensive review of employment standards for workers without unions, including :

  • End the practices of split shifts, call ins without pay and never knowing when workers are scheduled

  • Introduce paid sick days for all employees, including union sector

  • Remove the requirement of doctors sick notes by employers

  • Increase the coverage standard legislation to dependent contractors

“A young engineer is returning to New Brunswick to find that she is being asked to sign a five years contract with only ten days vacation, no paid sick leave, all of which is set by her employer. Once a young engineer myself, I know how important vacation can be – especially when you are starting a family.” – Jennifer McKenzie

For better access to unions

An NDP government will conduct a comprehensive review of collective bargaining laws in its first  term of office and in particular introduce legislation to implement the following the necessary changes to the Industrial Relations Act and the Public Service Labour Relations Act :

  • Expanded successor rights applicable to contractors in the service industry  and successor right protection under the Public Service Labour Relations Ac

  • Anti scab protection under the Industrial Relations  Act

  • Provide the Labour Relations Board with power to extend sectoral bargaining , such as in the construction industry,  to all sectors of the economy

For better Work safe

An NDP governement will renew the mandate of Work safe NB to insure that a culture of safety exists and is enforced in all work places and end the three day waiting period for injured worker benefits.