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Construction Bill 51 Passes

Photo: Renaud Philippe Archives Le Devoir Residential construction workers redo a roof in Montreal.

Isabelle Porter in Quebec

Published at 1:50 p.m. Updated at 6:45 p.m.

  • Quebec

The Legault government's construction reform reached a key milestone on Thursday with the adoption of Bill 51, which will notably allow industry workers to move from one region to another. other without constraints.

This is an important moment for the CAQ government which is counting on the effects of this law to alleviate the housing crisis. But also to prepare for major projects in the battery sector and achieve its energy ambitions.

This bill is a “flagship” element of the reform of a “nerve” industry, underlined the Minister of Labor Jean Boulet during its adoption Thursday noon.

Now construction workers will be able to be more versatile. It will be possible for them, for example, to carry out tasks for which they do not have a skills card in certain circumstances.

In addition, collective agreements will no longer be able to prevent a worker from moving from one region to another as was the case until now.

The project also requires greater transparency to the Quebec Construction Commission and provides for certain measures to increase the place of women and minorities on construction sites.

During adoption, the minister was pleased to have found a balance between the demands of each party. “We heard people telling us we were going too far, others telling us we weren’t going far enough. I would venture to say that this is probably a good indication and a fair symptom that we have indeed worked to find reasonable and balanced solutions,” he said.

Overall, construction contractors welcomed the reform while the unions strongly denounced it.

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  • The Quebec Construction Commission more lenient than ever
  • Minister Boulet hopes to retain 90% of recruits for accelerated construction training

Concerns for the regions which persist

The Parti Québécois, which voted against, criticized the minister of having relied too much on a survey carried out among companies regarding mobility. Studies or “convincing” data justifying the changes were lacking, according to the MP for Jean-Talon, Pascal Paradis. “Are the regions going to be winners? We don’t know,” he said.

Deputy Paradis fears in particular that mobility of workers only benefits large city-based companies and harms smaller players in the regions.

Conversely, the Liberal Party criticized the government for not having gone far enough in this area. In particular, he would have liked to see the mobility of not only construction workers facilitated, but also that of the companies themselves. “This is a step forward,” said MP Madwa-Nika Cadet. “He could have gone further. »

The measures in the bill on employee versatility should come into force next week. Others, like the one on mobility, will only be effective in the fall.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116