February 21, 2017
Government announcement concerning corporate head offices
Protecting a board of directors doesn't guarantee jobs
According to the IAMAW, the government's intention to protect Quebec's coporate headquarters is interesting, but clearly insufficient. This approach represents little for Quebec if not accompanied by measures to protect jobs for Quebec workers.
"This approach by the Government of Quebec only tackles the tip of the iceberg. It is not just by shielding a head office or by giving more power to a board of directors that job security is provided for its workers. It is not enough to have measures that protect our companies if the companies that we want to protect have no responsibility to Quebec society and that they can relocate overnight their productions to the four corners of the world after benefiting from labor, tland, resources, infrastructure and Quebec taxpayers money. In this sense, we deplore the fact that the Couillard government refuses to go all the way, trying only to protect the top of the pyramid. More needs to be done," says David Chartrand, vice-president of the QFL and coordinator of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAMAW).
"For decades, the Quebec political class has been engaged in a vast seduction operation to conserve and attract the activities of large multinationals on its territory and too often this is done to the detriment of its citizens, workers and the environment. Everything is done to accommodate large companies. Rebates on hydroelectric rates, tax credit, subsidies, investment in infrastructure, changes to legislation, inaction on tax evasion, etc. What do we ask in return for so many privileges? What guarantees do we have as a citizen that these companies will not sacrifice us for a handful of dollars? Too often, we put everything in place to encourage the creation of wealth, but very little is redistributed in a sustainable manner amongst all of us. We need job protection measures. We need tools, so that companies are responsible for their actions regardless of whether it is a "local success story" or not. It is by developing a culture of good corporate citizenship that we will succeed in maintaining good jobs in our country and that our national economy will regain its pride and creativity. "
The IAMAW has advocated two resolutions to combat relocation and abusive subcontracting that were unanimously accepted at the QFL covention last November. The union also has a program proposing six resolutions to protect jobs and socially empower businesses.
The IAMAW represents 15,000 members in Quebec, and more than 50,000 in Canada, including 16,000 in the air and aerospace industry.