Category: Labour

Proclamation confirms Liberals’ anti-labour agenda

For those of us wondering whatever happened to the government Nova Scotians elected three months ago it was a rude reminder. After a sleepy political summer disturbed by few signs of consciousness, the slumbering McNeil government woke up in a grumpy mood last week and, with proclamation of Bill 148, again turned its ire on public sector workers. Signing the proclamation came as no particular surprise after negotiations with the Nova Scotia Government and General Employees Union (NSGEU) broke down a few weeks ago and the union asked for arbitration. In Trumpian terms, the Liberals have been “locked and...

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Latest jobs report adds to Nova Scotia’s bad economic news

Media coverage of last week’s release of July employment numbers from Statistics Canada focused mainly on the bad news at the national level, where the survey turned up a loss of 31,200 jobs last month. As has become customary lately, Alberta’s contribution to the national employment malaise received a lot of attention as well, including the man-bites-dog revelation that the province’s unemployment rate last month crept past Nova Scotia’s for the first time in recorded (post-1976) history. Taken together, the story lines suggest that, compared to the rest of the country, Nova Scotia’s employment picture is looking up. Unfortunately,...

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New Brunswick doubles down on failed recipe

New Brunswick is once again playing the role of guinea pig for neocon-inspired experimentation on the Maritime body politic. With last week’s budget, highlighted by further cuts to the public sector and talk of out-sourcing government services, our northern neighbor continued a tradition started a quarter century ago by Premier Frank McKenna of applying the bromides of the conservative think tanks to address New Brunswick’s economic ills. McKenna’s approach was to lecture New Brunswickers about shedding government dependency and pulling themselves up by the bootstraps, while he begged big business to set up call centres and the like. When...

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Graham and me and public sector labour relations

While I was on vacation a couple of weeks ago Graham Steele took to Facebook to respond to my July 10 post which focused on how his popular book What I Learned About Politics treated the Dexter government’s handling of public sector wage negotiations. For those of you who haven’t read it, Graham’s Facebook entry is included below.  I’ve put in italics the bits that I’ll address in my response to his response. I won’t take the time to address all of Graham’s points. Interesting as some of them are, they are not particularly relevant to my main point...

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Graham, Howard and the NDP’s health care deal-making

Seeing as how summer was stubbornly holding back again this year, I decided to postpone the light summer reading regime with something a bit more weighty – the recent explorations of Nova Scotia politics by former NDP MLAs Howard Epstein and Graham Steele. I found both books very engaging, although for different reasons. Rise Again: Nova Scotia’s NDP on the Rocks, Howard’s sometimes scathing analysis of his own party’s recent performance in government will provide plenty of background material for New Democrats as they prepare to reset (or not) their direction with the selection of a new leader in...

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Richard Starr, The man behind the Point

About Richard

RICHARD STARR has had careers as a journalist, public servant, broadcaster, political staffer and freelance policy adviser. He is author of numerous newspaper and magazine articles, appearing in everything from Atlantic Insight to Atlantic Progress. A lifelong student of Maritime history, Starr is married to playwright and former MP Wendy Lill. They live in Dartmouth.

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