Collective Bargaining Case Study

Watch the Fifth Estate documentary “The Education of Brian Nicholl.”

After viewing the video, write a 2,000–2,400 word essay  examining what the film reveals about collective bargaining in Canada. Be sure  to include in your discussion the following issues:

  • What was the balance of bargaining power, and  how did it shift as the story unfolded?
  • What strategies did the union employ to try to  achieve a settlement? Why did it choose those strategies?
  • What was the employer’s strategy for avoiding  contractual obligations? Why did the strategy work?
  • What does the case tell us about the importance  of language clarity in an agreement?
  • What role does the union play in circumstances  such as the one found in the video?
  • What does the case say about the tension between  union staff negotiators and affected workers?
  • What role did the provincial government (the  state) play in the process and outcome?
  • How much did the economic and political  environment shape the bargaining outcome?
  • In your opinion, could the union have done any  more for the workers? Should the workers have accepted the deal?

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