April 29, 2023: Over 150,000 government employees, members of the Public Service Alliance of Canada, have been in a legal strike position since April 19, 2023.
Today is Day 11, since the PSAC Union Members entered the legal strike position.
+1 News Provides daily coverage as the IRCC’s Strike unfold, to keep you updated on how this will effect you.
Immigration Minister Sean Fraser admitted in a press conference that the severity of the strike’s consequences depends on its length, but couldn’t offer precise timelines or delays for applicants.
While certain services will remain operational, applicants should expect delays in the following services:
- Application processing,
- Citizenship ceremonies, and
- In-person appointments.
IRCC Strike Update today: The Latest Scoop
With PSAC members, including IRCC employees, on strike, until the government meets their demands, we’ll keep you updated on the daily happenings from reliable sources.
Check back later as this page is updated with new updates as they come.
Day 10 of IRCC Strike: Finally some movement today, Government sends PSAC another offer, negotiations begin again:
Union members are intensifying their efforts to pressure the federal government into action.
This afternoon, the government presented a counter-offer to the union. The Government did not share the details of this offer with the Public, Mona Fortier, President of the Treasury Board described this offer as “comprehensive.”
PSAC has chosen to withhold further comments for the time being, and also signaled that the negotiations will continue throughout the weekend.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau confirmed his personal involvement in the talks with PSAC, stating, “I have deep faith in collective bargaining as a process and we know that our negotiators are putting forward serious offers and working constructively with laborers on this.”
Significant moves were made in order to end the strike today.
In an effort to increase pressure on the Canadian government, striking workers have relocated their picket lines to major airports and Canada-U.S. border crossings.
This move is seen as a strategic tactic by the union to garner more attention from federal officials.
When asked about the possibility of implementing back-to-work legislation, François-Philippe Champagne of the Liberals responded, “No, we are not there at all.”
Mona Fortier, President of the Treasury Board tweeted to inform Canadians that the Negotiations have re-started.
Day 9 of IRCC Strike: Political Attacks continue, nothing concrete as the Government continues to stay firm
The opposition parties continue to debate the delays in finding a resolution in the house of commons.
Leader of the Official Opposition Pierre Poilievre blamed Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for causing this strike even after spending an additional $20 Billion on Federal Bureaucracy.
PM Justin Trudeau was also attacked by Poilievre for taking a trip to New York during the largest strike in the Canadian History.
The Government stays firm on their counter offer. Mona Forteir, President of the Treasury Board labelled union’s demands to be ‘Unreasonable”.
The Government persists to get a deal which values the hard work that their employees do, and is also fair for the taxpayers.
Following is the status of the demands and the Government’s counter offer.
|PSAC Demands||Government’s Offer|
|Wage increase of 13.5% (flexible, but better than 9%)||Maintains 9% wage increase|
|Telework agreement in all departments, except CRA||Suggests formal joint review of telework directives with unions|
|No contracting out of public service jobs||Willing to reduce contracting out, but not to zero due to potential impact on service delivery|
Day 8 of IRCC Strike: The Government Stands Firm
April 26, 2023: The Canadian government remains resolute, with Mona Fortier reiterating that she can’t “write a blank cheque” and that a 9% offer seems fair. PM Trudeau acknowledged that Canadians may face more difficulties accessing services in the coming days, but he insists the government is negotiating the best deal for everyone, including taxpayers.
Despite criticism for attending a reception in New York during the strike, Trudeau remains steadfast. PSAC’s president warns that if the prime minister can disregard striking workers, he could turn his back on all workers in the country.
IRCC Strike Day 7: NDP Leader calls on Prime Minister to Personally Interfere:
On April 25, 2023: Leader of NDP Jagmeet Singh is calling on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to get directly involved in the negotiation. Jagmeet Singh emphasized the importance of public servants and their work in everyday Canadians’ lives.
The Prime Minister often talks about the importance of the Public workers, where is he then? If he thinks workers are important, if he takes this matter seriously, He should be showing up & getting personally involved in finding a solution”Jagmeet Singh, Leader NDP
With NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh urging Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to get directly involved in the negotiations, it is clear that the strike has become a significant political issue.
Negotiations: Key Demands on the Table (As of April 25)
The three central demands being negotiated include:
- Wage Increase: PSAC seeks a 13.5% increase, while the government sticks to a 9% offer.
- Telework: Continuation of work-from-home has been agreed upon by all departments except CRA, which wants a formal review of telework directives.
- Contracting Out: PSAC wants a guarantee of no contracting out of public service jobs, while the government is willing to reduce contracting but not eliminate it completely.
Tax Deadline Remains Unchanged
The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) confirms that the tax deadline of May 1 will not be extended.
IRCC Strike: Affected Services
During the IRCC strike, applicants can expect delays in:
- Application processing
- In-person appointments, including citizenship ceremonies
- Contacting IRCC via email, phone, or social media
- Consular citizenship and passport services
- In-Canada passport services
CRA Service Disruption Alert
The federal government is encouraging Canadians to submit their taxes as soon as possible to avoid any hiccups during the current strike.
You can easily use online services like Express NOA and Auto-fill my return in approved tax preparation software—just sign up for CRA My Account access and you’re all set!
Be aware that certain CRA services might be delayed or become unavailable during the strike. This could lead to longer wait times at contact centers and potential delays in processing some income tax and benefit returns, particularly paper submissions.
Online services will still be up and running during the strike! These include:
- Registering for direct deposit
- Updating your personal information (address, phone number, marital status)
- Making a payment
- Tracking the status of your return
- Applying for child benefits
- Receiving mail and email notifications
- Viewing uncashed checks
So, make sure to use these online services for a smoother tax filing experience.
The Union’s Objectives
Federal government employees are striving for better pay, increased remote work flexibility, improved job security, and a healthier work-life balance. They have been without a collective bargaining agreement since October 31, 2021.
Both CRA and IRCC employees are officially on strike as of 12:01 am EST on April 19, 2023. Temporary employees, however, will continue to work during the strike.
When Will the IRCC Strike End?
While there’s no set end date, experts predict the IRCC strike won’t last long. Either the government and union will reach an agreement, or the Canadian government will have to implement “back-to-work legislation” to mitigate the impact on essential services. Previous public sector strikes lasted around 3-4 weeks.
For now, IRCC and federal public employees remain on strike until their demands are met. Stay tuned for more updates on +1 News
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