Mr. Speaker, first and foremost, the government does indeed support free collective bargaining. A negotiated settlement is always better for the parties because they can be masters of their own domain. They can determine what their destiny is going to be. Indeed, in the federal service, in the federal legislation area, 94% of collective bargaining does conclude with a collective agreement as negotiated by the parties.
Even when the parties become entrenched and extraordinary means of help given at the table still does not allow the parties to find a negotiated settlement, it does not mean that the government will necessarily intervene. The government intervenes in a very clear case: it intervenes when the work stoppage affects the national economy or has a greater Canadian public interest. As I have outlined today in my opening remarks, clearly there is no question that a prolonged work stoppage at CP Rail has a great and significant effect on our economy and therefore on the Canadian public interest. That is why we as a government must intervene to protect the interests of all Canadians.