Since 1968, labour relations in the construction industry have been governed by a particular statute, the Act Respecting Labour Relations, Vocational Training, and Workforce Management in the Construction Industry, commonly known as Act R-20. This statute and the resulting regulations are situated at the crossroads of two larger legislative and regulatory groupings: the one that governs construction work and the one governing labour relations.
Act R-20 is administered by the Commission de la construction du Québec (CCQ), a government organization funded mainly by the construction industry. The full text of the statute is also available from the Publications du Québec.
This law provides:
- Provisions regarding the labour relations system that divide the industry into four sectors for the purpose of negotiating the collective agreements(industrial, institutional/commercial, civil engineering and roadwork, and residential);
- The designation of employer associations and associations representing workers for the purpose of negotiating the collective agreements;
- Mandatory union membership;
- Application of working conditions for all workers and employers;
- Mechanisms for degree employer and union representation;
- The functions and composition of members of the CCQ, the Committee on Vocational Training in the Construction Industry (CFPIC) and the Construction Industry Social Benefits Committee;
- The CCQ’s powers;
- Exclusions from the field of application;
- The functions of the Tribunal administratif du travail (TAT);
- The negotiation process, content, entering into and scope of the collective agreements, and the conclusion of specific agreements;
- Union freedom and security;
- Criminal measures;
- Determination of the roles and projects that may be subject to regulation under this statute.
Field of application
The Act Respecting Labour Relations, Vocational Training, and Workforce Management in the Construction Industry (Act R-20) and the resulting regulations provide a framework for construction work and labour relations that govern all employers and workers In the construction industry throughout the province of Québec.
Definition of construction
All work relating to buildings and civil engineering executed on a construction site and on the site of a project:
- Prior work of preparation of the ground plus certain related work.
Under certain conditions:
- Installation, assembly, repair, and maintenance of building equipment;
- Installation, assembly, repair, and maintenance of production machinery;
- The cutting and pruning of trees and shrubs to clear electricity-distribution lines.