Employer free speech during organization drives and decertification campaigns
University of British Columbia
Master of Laws - LLM
One of the most contentious issues within the area of Industrial Relations is the right of an employer to express his opinions directly to his employees concerning unions. This doctrine of "Employer Free Speech" has been the subject of much debate and was the subject of amendments to the Labour Code in B.C. in 1977. This study will examine how this problem is dealt with in British Columbia and use for comparison purposes the jurisdictions of Ontario, Canada and the United States. The first chapter examines the philosophy behind the doctrine and the actual provisions dealing with free speech in the Labour Statutes of the four jurisdictions. A brief overview of other unfair labour practices will also be included to put our discussion in context. The second chapter of the thesis will deal with actions taken during an organizational campaign. The general guidelines established in each jurisdiction will be discussed and then a review of specific kinds of behaviours will be undertaken. This part will then deal with a discussion of the 1977 Amendments to the British Columbia Code. Chapter three will focus on employer interference during the decertification process and compare the differing philosophies of the four jurisdictions. The final section of the thesis contains the observations and recommendations of the author.
Law, Peter A. Allard School of