Provincial Issues Agenda
Over the past few years, Merit Saskatchewan has helped to lead the advocacy for:
- Bill 6, the Trade Union Amendment Act, passed in 2008, brought more “balance” to legislation dealing with union certification. It made Saskatchewan workplaces more democratic by allowing managers the right to communicate with their employees as well as ensuring union certification votes are conducted by secret ballot.
- Bill 80, the Construction Industry Labour Relations Act, passed in 2009, brought Saskatchewan’s labour relations legislation in line with neighboring provinces. It made some significant changes to the CILRA, including
- enables any trade union to certify an employer
- allows employers to choose the Representative Employers’ Organization that will represent them
- allows a trade union to organize a company on a multi-trade, or “all employee” basis (project-based certification) as well as on a craft, or single trade basis
- provides clarity on the issue of union abandonment
- In 2014, MERIT Saskatchewan supported the passage of Bill 85: The Saskatchewan Employment Act. The Act modernized and clarified Saskatchewan’s labour policy by combining 12 outdated and often-conflicting statutes into one comprehensive Act. As part of its advocacy for Bill 85, MERIT Saskatchewan led the fight for changes in the old work permitting system that required a government permit for each and every modified work arrangements. Now contractors are able to negotiate hours of work directly with their employees and are simply required to retain on file their employees’ written agreement to those modified work arrangements.
- The Saskatchewan Government released its Procurement Action Plan with the goal of improving fairness and consistency for Saskatchewan businesses participating in government procurement processes. Subsequently, Bill 188, The Best Value in Procurement Act was introduced on October 21, 2015, to ensure that procurement decisions going forward are based on best value rather than lowest price.
- On November 20, 2018, the Saskatchewan government introduced and subsequently passed a bill to amend The Builders’ Lien Act (the Prompt Payment Bill). The Prompt Payment Bill mandates prompt payment of contractors and subcontractors on construction projects and creates a dispute resolution process to resolve payment disputes. MERIT supported the advocacy efforts that led up to the introduction of the bill
- on December 4, 2018 the government introduced Bill 165 to amend the Workers Compensation Act, outlining the intent to modernize the governance structure from 3 full time Directors to 7: 3 full time and 4 part time Directors with equal representation between employers and workers. MERIT was instrumental in ensuring this important legislation was introduced.
Our issues may change, but our focus never does: we are dedicated to ensuring a fair and level playing field for ALL of Saskatchewan’s contractors.