Wage freeze up for negotiation

Arbitrator rules legislation needed to enforce Ontario’s pledge
By Sarah Dobson
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 11/01/2010

Despite the Ontario government’s call for a two-year wage freeze in the public sector, arbitrators seem to be moving the other way by granting wage increases to several unions.

It’s sort of a good news/bad news type of situation, said John Saunders, a partner at the law firm Hicks Morley in Toronto. The bad news is it looks like arbitrators are not prepared to follow the government’s directive, which does not help employers attempting to comply.

“We’re starting to have some arbitrated decisions which are coming down and the arbitrators are not following the request by the government to have two years of zero and zero,” he said.