CUPE wants to intervene in public service pension lawsuit
Unions maintain switch to shared risk pension plan violates right to freedom of association under Charter
The Canadian Union of Public Employees wants to intervene in a lawsuit brought by another union against the province of New Brunswick over changes to public service pensions.
The Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada initiated the lawsuit after the provincial government converted its public service pension plan into a shared-risk pension plan.
CUPE said the change "significantly reduced" pension benefits, the security of benefits and barred any collective agreement provisions that could improve pension benefits in the future.
- 'Slow down' move to shared-risk pension, CUPE says
- CUPE official backs pension reforms despite protests
- Does New Brunswick have the answer to Canada's pension funding crisis?
CUPE announced Thursday it has served the provincial government with notice it wants to intervene in the lawsuit.
"The rights of CUPE members and many other public sector workers were violated when the government unilaterally imposed pension changes on workers, in violation of their right to free collective bargaining," said Daniel Légère, the CUPE New Brunswick president, in a news release.
Légère contends the pension changes violate a members' right to have freedom of association under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
"CUPE fully supports this court challenge and will intervene to defence our members' rights," he said in the statement.
It is up to the court to decide whether a party is granted intervener status in a lawsuit brought by another party.