Queen's University

NHL labour negotiations: Queen's University expert


Queen’s University labour relations expert George Smith is available to talk about collective bargaining techniques as the NHL owners and the players’ union struggle to reach a deal.

Mr. Smith is a former Air Canada, CBC and CP Rail human resource executive who has spent decades negotiating major labour deals with unions. While Mr. Smith is not a hockey labour expert, he is an expert on the collective bargaining process and can talk about the high-pressure atmosphere in the bargaining room, and what techniques the NHL owners/players union reps may use to reach a deal when two sides are far apart.

“It’s not unusual for the two sides to start off wide apart on issues. The goal is to try to work together and find the middle ground,” says Mr. Smith, whose uncle, Sid Smith, was captain of the Toronto Maple Leafs and won the Stanley Cup three times. “Negotiating in small groups can lead to the biggest breakthroughs. In large group negotiations, everyone is on the defensive and you have to be careful who says what. You can be a little more informal with smaller groups.”

Please note Mr. Smith has limited TV availability on Wednesday, Sept. 19.

To arrange an interview, please contact communication officers Michael Onesi at 613.533.6000 ext. 77513 or michael.onesi@queensu.ca or Anne Craig at 613-533-2877 or anne.craig@queensu.ca at Queen’s University News and Media Services Department in Kingston, Ont., Canada.

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Attention broadcasters: Queen’s has facilities to provide broadcast quality audio and video feeds. For television interviews, we can provide a live, real-time double ender from Kingston via fibre optic cable. Please call for details.

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Last updated at 11:46 am EDT, Fri August 22, 2014
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