NATIONAL PULSE – Canadians support some PSAC demands, not others

(Image: Mel Rothenburger)


April 21, 2023 – As the largest public service strike in Canadian history enters its first weekend, new data from the non-profit Angus Reid Institute finds a majority of Canadians inclined to back more than 155,000 federal public service workers in their asks for wage premiums and the right to work from home, but circumspect over wage increase demands.

Members of the Public Service Alliance of Canada walked off the job midnight Wednesday seeking a number of wage and benefit enhancements to their contract with the federal government.

Two major demands are supported by a majority of Canadians. Two-thirds say they support wage premiums for night shifts and overtime hours (65%) while one-quarter oppose the government conceding on this (27%). More than half (55%) support the right to work from home for federal employees, while one-in-three (36%) oppose it.

Other proposals receive lower levels of support, including a 4.5% annual wage increase for three years (48% support), more annual paid family leave (44%), and a discussed stipend for employee who speak an Indigenous language (37%).

While many demographic differences drive views on this issue, the most pronounced is political affiliation. Those who supported the Conservative Party in 2021 are overwhelmingly opposed to four of the five demands, though a slim majority (52%) support union calls for wage premiums. Meantime, support from past Liberal and NDP voters is far more evident, with a majority of each supporting all five items.

More Key Findings:

  • Overall support for union demands is highest in Quebec and Atlantic Canada, and lowest in Alberta and Saskatchewan. Seven-in-ten (68%) in Quebec support the demand for the right to work from home while close to half as many (36%) in Saskatchewan say the same.
  • Men over the age of 55 offer the lowest levels of support for each of the five negotiating issues presented in this survey. Men younger than 35 and women between the ages of 18 and 54 are most supportive.

Link to the poll here:

About Mel Rothenburger (9634 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

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