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U of T Conference on Right to Strike

Brian Langille at U of Toronto law school has organized a very interesting labour law seminar for this weekend with leading  scholars from Canada, the U.S., Europe, and Africa, including Sir Bob Hepple, Keith Ewing, Harry Arthurs, and James Pope, among other distinguished scholars.    The subject matter is: Is there a Constitutional Right to Strike in Canada?  

Because space is limited, it is by invitation only, so don’t just show up!  However, the papers from the conference will be published in a special volume of the Canadian Labour and Employment Law Journal next year.  Some of the papers are already posted.  Here is the line up.

The topic is a live one now in light of the Supreme Court’s recent project of reworking the scope of freedom of association in the Charter.  The Court ruled in the 1980s that freedom of association does not include a right to strike or right to collective bargaining.  However, a couple of years ago, in B.C. Health Services, the Court changed its mind about the right to collective bargaining, and said it was wrong in the earlier decisions.  It also ruled that ‘freedom of association’ in the Charter should provide at least as much protection as that required by ILO Conventions that Canada has ratified.  Canada has ratified Convention 87, which the ILO expert bodies have found includes an expansive right to strike.  (See my post from earlier this week).  This is a topic I have discussed before, when York was on strike.

I look forward to the papers coming out of this conference.


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