The BC Labour Relations Board recently dismissed an application for decertification after finding that the employer had promised employees better benefits if they decertified.
The BC Labour Relations Code prohibits an employer from participating in or interfering with the employees’ selection of their trade union. This prohibition includes the use of inducements that have the effect of persuading employees to support decertification.
The Board found that the employer’s promise of benefit improvements constituted a financial inducement which formed part of the impetus for the decertification. The effect of the contravention was to interfere with the employees’ decision-making so that the vote would not reflect employees’ true wishes about continuing union representation. As a result, the Board exercised its discretion under the Code to refuse to cancel the certification and barred another application for decertification for 10 months.