Pay dividing federal public sector

Feeling left behind execs, professionals, front-line workers set to strike.
By Laura Cassiani
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 09/04/2003

Front-line workers in the public sector don’t want to be treated as “second class” and are threatening to strike if they don’t get pay increases in line with professional and high-ranking federal workers.

“They are creating a class division within the public sector. (Our members) are insulted they are not being recognized for the work they are doing,” said Nycole Turmel, president of the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC), who represents the workers.

Some 90,000 public servants will be in a legal strike position by the end of August and are willing to walk if steps aren’t taken to address the disparity in wages. In a recent strike vote, 63 per cent voted in favour of strike action. That is a higher percentage of workers compared to those who chose to walk in a similar strike in 1991 over wage freezes and privatization.