News Release Archive

TRANSPORTATION/PUBLIC WORKS--Collective Bargaining Formalized
The Minister of Transportation and Public Works, Don Downe, today
introduced legislation to formalize collective bargaining for
highway workers.

The act protects in law the existing collective bargaining
relationship between the highway workers and the department. 

"I am very pleased to introduce this new legislation for the
women and men who work for the department on Nova Scotia's
highways," said Mr. Downe. "The long-term relationship between
highway workers and my department has been very positive. This
legislation builds on that positive record and gives full
statutory protection to our existing collective bargaining

The legislation -- titled An Act Respecting Collective Bargaining
by Highway Workers -- does not change any of the current terms
and conditions of employment. As with other labour relations
legislation, it establishes mandatory negotiation and
dispute-resolution processes.

"We see the employees of government as an important resource,"
said Human Resources Minister Allister Surette. "This legislation
protects those resources, the highway workers, and gives their
collective-bargaining process the same level of protection as
that of other government employees."

Gareth Drinnan, president of CUPE Local 1867, said the
legislation is a positive step for his members. "For 25 years,
the Nova Scotia Highway Workers Union has been lobbying and
fighting for better protection for its members and finally the
day is almost here."

The legislation provides for the creation of an employee
relations board to handle disputes over how the collective
agreement is applied. It outlines the steps to be followed in
collective bargaining and recognizes the highway workers' right
to be represented by a union.

More than 1,000 highway workers are employed by the Department of
Transportation and Public Works to maintain and service Nova
Scotia's 26,000 kilometres of highways. They are represented by
the Nova Scotia Highway Workers, CUPE Local 1867.


Contact: Chris Welner
         Department of  Transportation and Public Works
         Cell: 902-499-0032

         Norma MacIsaac
         Department of Human Resources
         Cell: 902-471-8098

NOTE TO EDITORS: A fact sheet on the act is available by
e-mailing or calling 902-424-4492.

ngr                 Nov. 26, 1997                 2:45 p.m.