Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)




Faculty of Arts

First Advisor

Terry Copp

Advisor Role

Thesis Supervisor


The aim of this study is to determine why collective bargaining rights were granted to civil servants. Chapter one examines the historical development of labour relations in the civil service, specifically social, political, and economic trends present when new bills governing labour relations were introduced. Trends which were to have an impact on Bill C-170 are delineated. Chapter two follows the evolvement of collective bargaining rights into a political issue and the reaction of political parties and other interest groups. Emphasis is placed on the role of postal employees. Chapter three examines the political situation before and after the 1965 federal election and its impact on the decision to introduce the right to strike. The thoughts of editorialists and parliamentarians on the proposed bill are then reviewed. Chapter four follows Bill C-170 through parliamentary committee hearings where labour, business, and committee members expressed their concerns. Parliamentarian and editorial opinions are also put forward. The conclusion poses reasons why the right to strike was granted to all employees. The epilogue shows that on-going issues between the government and its unions stem from the 1960s and postulates that the current aspirations of civil service unions are unlikely to be met.

Convocation Year