Austerity Blues: Public Sector Bargaining Rights in the United States and Canada

Source: Joseph B. Rose, Labor Law Journal, Vol. 64 no. 4, Winter 2013
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The 2008 global economic crisis had two discernible effects on government fiscal policy in the United States and Canada. First, and consistent with other industrialized countries, governments introduced major stimulus programs in an attempt to reduce the economic impact of the recession. Second, as increases in government expenditures led to rising budget deficits and public debt, governments recognized the need to develop fiscal plans aimed at restoring balanced budgets. Achieving this objective proved difficult in the absence of a sustained economic recovery and the European sovereign debt and banking crisis.1 As stimulus measures gave way to austerity programs, policy makers increasingly focused on reducing expenditures and restraining public sector compensation. …