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COLLECTIVE AGREEMENTS - Negotiation

Monday, July 15, 2019 @ 9:45 AM  


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Motion by Nova Scotia to exclude parts of affidavits. Nova Scotia and a union were engaged in a dispute about the constitutionality of legislation that imposed a collective agreement. The union said that the Province substantially interfered with collective bargaining in a way that did not respect the process of meaningful and good faith consultation. The Province sought to exclude parts of affidavits relating to two discussions dealing with the union’s assertion that the Province intended to introduce legislation if the union did not accept an agreement by a certain date. During the first discussion, a deputy minister was alleged to have said to the union’s chief negotiator that the Province intended to introduce legislation to impose the Province’s fiscal plan. During the second discussion, the negotiator was alleged to have said at a meeting of the union bargaining committee that the Province was drafting legislation to impose a wage package. The Province argued that settlement or case-by-case privilege applied.

HELD: Motion dismissed. The discussions were not subject to settlement privilege. They were not being used in the adjudication of any dispute that they were intended to settle. The relationship between management and union labour negotiators was not of the kind that would give rise to privileged communications in the context of the negotiation of a collective agreement.

Nova Scotia Teachers Union v. Nova Scotia (Attorney General), [2019] N.S.J. No. 243, Nova Scotia Supreme Court, J.S. Campbell J., June 4, 2019. Digest No. TLD-July152019002