12/12/12 - A sad day for union membersDecember 13, 2012 It has now become a reality. Early yesterday evening the House of Commons passed the private member’s bill C-377, tabled by backbencher Russ Hiebert. The proposed legislation will now be submitted to the Senate for adoption.
It is a clearly discriminatory piece of legislation that forces unions, and only unions, to report any expenditures exceeding $5,000 to the Canada Revenue Agency. Also, any salary over $100,000 will become public, which goes against rules that apply to the protection of personal information.
Also, anti-union lobby groups will not have to comply with the same rules, or even reveal their revenue sources. This legislation can be viewed as a group specific legislation, which reveals a level of discrimination never before seen.
For its part, the Canada Revenue Agency says that it would require a substantial amount of time, probably until 2015, to set-up the systems required. Total cost of the operation according to the CRA: around 2.5 million dollars. However, Member of Parliament Alexandre Boulerice, who strongly opposed the bill, thinks it could reach at least 10.5 million, plus recurring annual maintenance costs that are difficult to evaluate for the moment.
CAPE will be working in collaboration with its sister unions to try to prevent the adoption of this legislation by the Senate. If this Bill is passed by the Senate, we will examine the possibility of a legal challenge of the new law.