The QP Clip: The first salvo in a labour war

The exchange you can’t miss from this morning’s Question Period


Tom Mulcair sprinkled questions among the Conservative front benches during Question Period’s opening round. The NDP Leader started with First Nations education, but quickly pivoted to a jab at Treasury Board President Tony Clement’s understanding of his own public servants.

Clement claims public servants average 18 sick days a year, and occasionally frets about how that statistic is out of line with corresponding data in the private sector. Federal unions claim the number is closer to 11.5. Today, the Parliamentary Budget Officer reported that, in his office’s view, the public servants’ number is correct—and Clement’s calculation combines both paid and unpaid sick days. Not surprisingly, Mulcair interpreted Jean-Denis Fréchette’s report as confirmation of the unions’ claims. For his part, Clement claimed his accounting had always included paid and unpaid days. Neither gave any ground.

Today’s exchange provided just the first salvo of what could be a protracted fight in the Commons over labour relations. More than two dozen bargaining units are negotiating new contracts with their federal employers in 2014. Drama approaches.


The QP Clip: The first salvo in a labour war

  1. Tony, Tony, Tony! You’d better hope the fire retardants you soak your pants in aren’t carcinogenic.

  2. Mulcair, you are out of touch. In a government office I worked, it was much higher. Amazing too the biggest days are always Fridays and Mondays. It is a epidemic union-government issue be it city, provincial or federal.

    I even know a postie using accumulated sick days to pension out as sick days pay far better than disability. Even gets pension time for it.

    If everything is designed to foster waste, you get more waste and lower productivity.

    Heck, even MPs and senators have attendance problems and they both sit for less than 100 days a year while those that support it are well over 200. Even had Alberta MLA try to bill for committees that never happened.

    Reality is Ottawa has become a pork barrel of waste, buddy deals, bailouts, corporate and provincial welfare, inflated contracts and just incompetence to new levels.

    We pay more and get less is the only possible result of our ballot options. After all, I am sure Mulcair and union buddies support more Air Canada bailouts and welfare. Taxing us more for low value money, we will spend less on other peoples jobs. This is the real cause of a poor job environment in Canada, we are a tax inflated economy of government debt and waste, less money and low value money we employ fewer people.

    • Yeah, Mulcair – who needs your statistics and Parliamentary Budget Officers? Address MY anecdote, which totally proves you wrong!

      I’m starting to understand why the Sun News chain writes at a grade 5 level.

  3. If we had ethical governance, we would have NO raises for anyone in government until the budget was balanced, accountability improved and they become more effective and less wasteful.

    Reality is, we have a poor job market as we are too busy supporting wasteful excesses in governments to spend it on each others jobs.

    Given real inflation creep, auto taxes to me, we are now down to one and not two vehicles. So tax me more, I spend less on your jobs. Doctors, dentists extra bill me as they are hyper taxed, means I even have less to spend on other peoples jobs.

    Want jobs? Balance the budget and lower taxes to the people who make this country work. And maybe time to do what most countries do, ban government unions from striking on pay/benefits and arbitrarily normalize them and define their pay to society norms. After all, why do tax slaves have to work to 67 to get less, when government union gets more at 55?

  4. I’ll sum it up for you stop free trade or lease all imports the main problem is is when you talk back about teachers cutbacks it’s the kids to pay for it

    • Tony Clement is the federal President of the Treasury Board, education is not federal jurisdiction. I don’t see what your comment has to do with this article.