Hello Mr. De Lafontaine ,
Thank you for writing me to let me know your concerns about Bill C -377, An Act to amend the Income Tax Act ( applicable to labor organizations) . The feedback from the community is essential to better understand the needs of our many neighborhoods.
On 12 December 2012, Conservative MPs voted for the bill , which aims to weaken the labor movement. In June 2013, the Senate adopted amendments to Bill C-377 which impose an unreasonable administrative burden on unions. These amendments also ensure that the bill be referred to the House of Commons. It is important to note that if there is an extension , the bill will again be a consideration in the Senate before being sent to the House of Commons.
We believe that transparency and accountability are just a pretext and that Bill C-377 is actually an attack against unions and workers.
The NDP is in favor of transparency, but only if it applies equally to all organizations and it does not cause harm. We certainly can not talk about fairness when the government decides who is accountable and who has a right pass . In addition, Bill C-377 is an obvious attack against the right of association , the right to privacy and freedom of expression. It is useless, biased, unfair and unconstitutional , and it poses serious compliance issues of privacy in addition to imposing administrative burdens.
In fact, Bill C-377 would cost Canadians dearly and it would entail a lot of bureaucracy. Bill C-377 would require public disclosure of the finances of trade unions. However, it does not have the same disclosure requirements with respect to corporate friends of conservatives. As the details of daily expenses of a bank or a big company , the thoroughness of financial information of unions is not relevant to the general public. Not only it will cost time and money to unions to generate reports , but it will cost the taxpayers money to verify these statements – the processing and verification of public information returned by thousands unions require substantial funding. The PBO estimates that the costs greatly exceed the $ 2.4 million provided by the Canada Revenue Agency .
In addition to being a burden on the economy , this bill will cause imbalance and provide an advantage to companies that can use the financial information of the unions.
In addition, we believe that this bill is contrary to the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and it will be invalidated in court as contrary to freedom of association and the right to privacy of members unions. The Commissioner for the Protection of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada has also expressed its concern about the bill.
The unions are already required under the Labour Code of seven provinces , to communicate their financial statements to their members. They are already transparent . The New Democrats demand that conservative ensure transparency , as the cost of fighter aircraft F-35 as treatment within the Prime Minister . Rather than accountable to Canadians , the Conservatives selectively target certain sectors in our society.
We regularly take the stand in the House to make known our opposition to Bill C -377. For your information , I used several parliamentary procedures to prevent the adoption of the bill. For example, at a meeting of the Finance Committee , I filibustered for two hours to prevent a debate on amendments to Bill C -377. This long speech accompanied the filing of a motion to abandon Bill C-377. You can watch the video of Mr. Boulerice filibustering by clicking the following link: http://youtu.be/9Or3CfFgw-I ( bilingual).
Conservatives choose to attack unions, workers and their hard won rights . As for us, the NDP will continue to defend the interests of workers and the unions that represent them , as we did for the workers at Canada Post and Air Canada, and countless others.
The bill has attracted an impressive mobilization of the population , which the Conservatives have chosen to turn a deaf ear. Again, thank you for contacting us about this important issue.
MP | Member of Parliament
Rosemont – La Petite -Patrie
Spokesman of the Opposition Labour | Official Opposition Labour Critic
Deputy Spokesperson ethics , access to information and protection of privacy | Deputy Ethics , Access to Information and Privacy
New Democratic Party | New Democratic Party
( TEL ) 514 729-5342
ndp.ca | npd.ca