Canada's NDP


March 28th, 2024

MP Mathyssen Sends Letter to Minister Blair In Support of Non-Public Funds Workers

March 26 2024

The Hon. Bill Blair, P.C., M.P

Minister of National Defence

House of Commons, Ottawa, ON K1A0A6

Solidarity with Non-Public Funds Workers

Dear Minister Bill Blair,

As our parties’ critics for National Defence, we are joining our voices in solidarity with the Non-Public Funds (NPF) workers that have been on strike for over 70 days.

These workers support Canadian Forces members, veterans and their families. They offer morale and welfare services such as health, fitness and recreation programs, as well as shopping, retail and financial services. Forty percent of these workers are themselves members of a military family.

Non-Public Fund workers provide the same services and perform the same tasks as many federal civil

servants, but their salaries are up to 60% lower. NPF workers also face different pay scales for the same work, depending on where they work. This situation stems from the 1982 decree excluding all NPF staff from the Public Service Employment Act.

In Ontario and Quebec, close to 600 Non-Public Funds workers adopted a 94% strike action mandate to demand fair wages, a fair wage grid and secure, quality jobs.

But more than two months later, negotiators for Canadian Forces Morale and Welfare Services (CFMWS) have come to the bargaining table with no real mandate, while workers face major obstacles during their strike. Instead of investing in these workers, CFMWS has instead chosen to hire private security to monitor the workers, while the picketing is taking place in an orderly and peaceful manner. The CFMWS also uses replacement workers, including CAF members, or relocates some of the work to other military bases. It has also paid costly outside consultants for negotiations.

As Minister of National Defence, we submit to you that it is your responsibility to ensure that the CFMWS comes to the table with a real negotiating mandate, including room to manoeuvre on the abolition of the 1982 decree, fair wages, a national pay grid and secure, quality jobs. What's more, as your government prepares to pass anti-scab legislation, we believe that for the sake of consistency, you must speak out against the use of replacement workers.

Together, we are writing to express our solidarity with the Non-Public Funds workers on the picket line and urge you to take action to reach a negotiated solution to the conflict.

Yours sincerely,

Lindsay Mathyssen, MP


Christine Normandin, MP

Saint Jean