Some 335 officers will wear their peace Quebecois full uniform soon sign Monday of “good faith” to the government.
The Union of special constables of the Government of Quebec (SCSGQ) announced Sunday in a statement that he had ordered its members to “temporarily suspend [their] visibility means” and to wear the full uniform.
The union said they made the decision after receiving a letter from the Minister of Public Safety, Martin Coiteux, which would have communicated his concerns about the fact that several peace officers do not wear the full uniform.
Special constables, who are responsible for security in the province courthouse and the Quebec National Assembly, openly showed their opposition to the government, especially by wearing non-regulation trousers.
The union argued that Sunday’s decision was “a first step to demonstrate [its] open” to dialogue with the government. The collective agreement for special constables expired on 31 March 2015.
Currently, negotiations are “frozen tables,” said union president, Franck Perales. A meeting is scheduled Tuesday morning however with Minister Coiteux.
Mr. Perales reiterated that this was a “temporary” measure while waiting to see the government’s proposals. Visibility means are the only means of pressure available to those agents who do not have the right to strike, he recalled.
According to the union president, the claims relate in particular to the salary scales of its members – a record that does not move for ten years, he lamented.
SCSGQ pressure means in particular had slightly disturbed the activities of the courthouse in Montreal in June 2015, when these agents were presented in court with jeans. The judges had immediately ordered them to get changed and come back wearing the regulation uniform, citing decorum.
A few days earlier, the judges of the Gatineau courthouse respondent had special constables to remove a protest armband with which they were presented in court.