Unions fight back over wage freezes

Governments plan to rein in spending as economy recovers
By Shannon Klie
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 10/22/2010

When the recession took hold at the end of 2008, governments across Canada went into stimulus-spending mode, racking up billion-dollar deficits. Now, as the economy improves, those same governments are looking for ways to balance budgets and pay off deficits.

In several provinces, including Manitoba and Ontario, cost-cutting measures include a wage freeze for public sector workers, a move that has angered unions such as the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE).

“It seems like public employees are being asked to shoulder more of a responsibility for the anticipated deficits that governments took on to stimulate the economy,” said Paul Moist, national president of CUPE.