Court orders Tories to find new arbitrator in Canada Post-union dispute - InfoNews

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Court orders Tories to find new arbitrator in Canada Post-union dispute

Court orders Tories to find new arbitrator in Canada Post-union dispute
August 08, 2012 - 10:46 AM

OTTAWA - The Federal Court has ordered the Harper government to find a new arbitrator in a lingering dispute between Canada Post and its biggest union.

In a decision released today, the court says any reasonable person might worry arbitrator Guy Dufort is biased because of his previous work for Canada Post and history as a Conservative candidate in Quebec.

Labour Minister Lisa Raitt had named Dufort to hear the case after retired judge Coulter Osborne quit the job amid concerns that he was not bilingual.

Though Dufort was on a CUPW-approved list of potential arbitrators, the union said they were unaware of the depth of his ties to the Conservatives and Canada Post and objected to his appointment as soon as they learned of the links.

Canada Post locked out some 50,000 of its employees last year after a series of rotating strikes by the union.

The dispute ended with federal back-to-work legislation that forced workers to accept wages that amounted to less than Canada Post's last offer.

Arbitration hearings to settle the dispute were delayed again in May after the Federal Court agreed to hear the case.

News from © The Canadian Press, 2012
The Canadian Press

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