Friday, September 24

Tensions at the Quebec Construction Commission

As thousands of construction workers enjoy their vacations, the rag is burning within the organization responsible for managing their benefits and meeting the workforce needs in this industry. So much so that the Commission de la construction du Québec (CCQ) turned to the Superior Court to try to get rid of two of its administrators.

Michel Trépanier and Éric Boisjoly, who are respectively at the head of the Quebec Provincial Council of Construction Trades (international) and of the FTQ-Construction, were appointed in 2019 by the Government of Quebec to the Board of Directors of the CCQ. The two associations they oversee represent more than 100,000 unionized workers in the industry.

Since their appointment, “the behavior” of the two men “has given rise to a breakdown in good governance” within the organization, we can read in the originating application filed earlier this week by the CCQ before the Superior Court.

The two union associations they represent have in particular initiated three legal actions against the CCQ since last year, including one relating to the organization’s management of the pension plan of its hundreds of members. The two unions allege that the CCQ is hiding information from them concerning the management of funds associated with the pension plan of approximately 300,000 construction workers, explained to the To have to their lawyer, Claude Tardif.

The other two appeals relate to measures aimed at countering the shortage of manpower in the construction industry and “constitutional challenge” of certain legal provisions which concern “the mission and mandate of the CCQ”, list the court documents.

Broken trust

By letting the unions they represent to act in this way, Michel Trépanier and Éric Boisjoly have helped to undermine the “climate of trust” that “reigned” previously within the CCQ’s board of directors, alleges the organization.

“Recently, the tension is palpable”, would have written in particular a director during a self-assessment exercise of the performance of the members of the board of directors. “Several administrators then reported significant issues that lead to a devastating break without precedent compared to previous years”, says the CCQ, which therefore asks the Superior Court to force the two union representatives to “abstain” from taking part. at the meetings of its board of directors, which will resume at the end of August.

Me Tardif, for his part, sees this request as a “gag order to silence” the two unions he represents.

“We have at all times behaved as responsible administrators and that the instructions given to our prosecutors are in order to vigorously challenge this request before the Court”, told the To have to Friday Michel Trépanier and Éric Boisjoly, in a joint statement.

Quebec arrested

Since June 19, the mandate of all CCQ directors has ended, with the exception of that of its president, Diane Lemieux. The two men targeted by this legal action, however, remain in office in practice “until the government has made a decision on their replacement or the renewal of their mandate,” notes the CCQ.

The Secretariat for Senior Jobs, which says it is “aware of the situation”, however refused to comment on it, “considering that the case is currently before the courts”. The office of the Minister of Labor, Jean Boulet, hopes for its part that the members of the CCQ’s board of directors “will work in collaboration in the face of the challenges of labor shortages in the industry”, despite the current context. .

The CCQ declined our interview request.

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