Nfld. & Labrador

Federal public servants protest sluggish bargaining, 'lack of respect'

Federal public service employees launched a cross-country campaign Wednesday in hopes of ending contract negotiations that have been ongoing for more than two years.

Public Service Alliance of Canada members mobilized across the country in protest

Public Service Alliance of Canada employees protest for wage increases and sick leave provisions. (Gary Locke/CBC)

Federal public service employees launched a cross-country campaign Wednesday in hopes of wrapping up contract negotiations that have been ongoing for more than two years.

"Well we've been bargaining for over two years now, and that's quite a long time to be stuck in bargaining," said Mark Power, regional vice-president, Newfoundland and Labrador for the Public Service Alliance of Canada.

"That was kind of expected and evident under the last government, and we would've expected with the Liberals in power now that things would've moved along a bit faster."

Mark Power is regional vice-president, Newfoundland and Labrador for the Public Service Alliance of Canada. (Gary Locke/CBC)

The "sluggishness of bargaining" is one concern, Power said, but they're also protesting the "lack of respect" they've seen from their employer, the federal government.

Power said the Liberal government is maintaining the "attack on sick leave" the previous Conservative government had begun, and the union is not happy with the wage offer. 

"We've seen a sustained position on a half-a-percent-per-year for us as workers when members of parliament themselves have given themselves in excess of four times that as a wage increase," Power said.

"So we would like to see some of that similar treatment to us as workers as well."

The local protest coincides with other PSAC chapters across the country.

They are mobilizing members who work with the Treasury Board, Parks Canada, the Canadian Border Service Agency, Canada Revenue Agency and the Canadian Food Inspection.

The local PSAC members joined others across the country Wednesday in their protest. (Gary Locke/CBC)