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Chapter 4 – Labour Relations

  • Issued: July 27, 2016
  • Content last reviewed: July 2016

See also: The Changing Workplaces Review

Purpose of the Labour Relations Act

The Supreme Court of Canada has often noted that freedom of association protects the rights of employees to associate for the meaningful pursuit of collective workplace goals. The purpose of freedom of association in the workplace is “to preserve collective employee autonomy against the superior power of management and to maintain equilibrium between the parties.”[39]

The Labour Relations Act, 1995 (LRA) is the primary statute regulating labour relations for most Ontario private and public sector workplaces. The LRA contains provisions pertaining to:

  • the certification and decertification of unions;
  • the negotiation, content and operation of collective agreements; and
  • the regulation of legal strikes and lock-outs.

These issues are important both to the parties directly involved in collective bargaining and to the public.

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