Lecture 1: Interest Arbitration
normal way of bargaining for esesntial services
both parties make submissions to the arbitrator who then sets the agreement
o may set the whole agreement, or simply the clauses parties cannot work out
designed to replace the strike as the meachnism for resolving bargaining disputes
if the parties cannot agree, work continues and an abitrator will set the terms fo the
future employment relationship
usually mediation used first.
advantages for union
o steady gains, few pay cuts
May have narcotic effect, may push up wages that, in the public sector, are paid for
o arbitrator rarely concerned with government's ability to pay
when unhappy with outcome, government may simply legislate it away
Allan Ponak & Loren Falkenberg "resolution of Itnerest Disputes" 1989
growth of public sector unrest created new develelopments
o govs. believe
public sector work stoppages would put exteme burden on public
combination of public and economic pressure from public sector unions
would place too much power in unions' hands
so alternative to strike neeeed.
o sometimes illegal strikes still happen, but rarely
o unions and employers have more or less accepted binding arbitration
but creates its own problems as well
o reduces the likelihood that parties will reach an agreement on their own
lower cost of disagreement- the fear of going to arbitratio nis less than
the fear of a work stoppage
threat of strike is a powerful inducement to settle while threat
of arbitration is not.
concessions made during bargaining may prove harmful if abritrated
settlement is eventually required.
negotiators become accustomed to relying on arbitration.
Kinds of arbitration in Kanada
o conventional arbitration
board here's submissions, then fashions a solution
board permitted to accept union or employer position, split it down the
middle, or create own compromise
o Final Offer Selection
arbitrator picks between employer and employee's final positions, but
may not adopt a middle position.
o Choice of Proceedures
one of the parties (in Canada, the union) can choose prior or during
negoitations whether impasse will go to strike or arbitration Data clearly shows arbitration reduces the likelihood of negotiated settlement as
opposed to strike-based systems
o but this may be a price that has to be paid for the overall public good.
Chilling and narcotic effects