A Secret Ballot for Union Certification and to Maintain It

A union may file an application for certification with the …

Resolution #75: A Secret Ballot for Union Certification and to Maintain It (Official French version)

A union may file an application for certification with the Commission des relations du travail without holding a secret ballot if more than 50% of employees have signed a membership card. Since Saskatchewan adopted the systematic use of secret ballots in 2007, Québec remains one in a minority of provinces to still allow this practice.

We are naturally in favour of the right of association. This fundamental right is protected under the Canadian Constitution and the Québec Charter of Rights and Freedoms. However, only a secret ballot, administered by an independent ballot, will allow employees to freely and democratically express their fundamental right to associate with a union, or not.

Moreover, the provisions of the Labour Code dealing with the right granted to unionized employees to decertify during the so-called period of raiding are not well understood. If union members were informed of this right at the appropriate time, they would be given the freedom to exercise their choice. If a significant number so desired, a vote on decertification would be required.

A CPQ government will protect the rights and freedoms of workers by amending the Labour Code:

  • To require a secret ballot for any application for certification, even when the number of signed cards exceeds half of the membership;
  • To require a secret ballot on whether or not to maintain the certification, within each of the periods provided in the accreditation certificate.