Document shows Clement misled Canadians on public sector wages | National Union of Public and General Employees

Document shows Clement misled Canadians on public sector wages

"The evidence to attack the public sector workers exists only in the minds of Conservatives. Workers aren't the enemy as the Conservatives would like Canadians to believe, " said James Clancy, NUPGE National President.

Ottawa (19 Mar. 2014) — Tony Clement, President of the Treasury Board, has been the front manfor the Conservatives waging a campaign against federal public sector workers. While the government has been reducing the public sector workforce as part of its austerity measures, the Minister has launched an assault on the remaining workers, targeting public service worker wages, negotiated sick time, workplace health and safety, as well as their legal labour rights.

Document shows Clement misled the public on workers' wages

One of Clement's most overused justifications to rollback public sector wages has been that workers are overpaid in comparison to private sector workers. Yet, in a memo, obtained through an Access to Information request by PressProgress, it is clear that the Minister had all the proof needed to understand that his asserations were false.

According to PressProgress, "the document was prepared just as the Conservative government was getting ready to table its omnibus budget implementation bill containing provisions that attacked the public service."

Overall public sector and private sector wages almost identical

It goes on to report that as it "turns out employees in the private sector did slightly better on wage increases than public sector workers, besting federal civil servants in 10 of those years; employees in the federal public sector received a higher wage increase in nine of those years; the two received the same increase in one of those years. And overall, the two streams emerged in nearly identical positions: private sector employees received an average annual wage increase of 2.125 per cent, compared to 2.016 per cent for public sector employees and 2.105 per cent for federal public servants."

Attack on wages part of Conservative plan to demonize public sector workers

"The evidence to attack the public sector workers only exists in the minds of Conservatives. Workers aren't the enemy as the Conservatives would like Canadians to believe, " said James Clancy, National President of the National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE). "Public service workers are just another group to bear the brunt of yet another assault on the fabric of our country."

"Demonize, distort and distract seem to be the only rules the Conservatives know how to play by, " adds Clancy. "Canadians deserve a government that bases its policies on facts, not ideological fiction."

NUPGE

The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 340,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. NUPGE