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April 4, 2019

Policymakers should ensure the public interest is a priority in arbitrated public-sector labour settlements, says a new report from the C.D. Howe Institute.

In “Time to Tweak or Re-boot? Assessing the Interest Arbitration Process in Canadian Industrial Relations,” author Richard P. Chaykowski assesses the current state of the arbitration system and raises several concerns. They include whether using arbitration to settle labour disputes yields efficient and equitable labour relations and economic outcomes, whether it leads to higher wage outcomes than governments would otherwise pay, and whether interest arbitrators apply criteria that serve the public interest in crafting decisions.