(OTTAWA) Treasury Board President Mona Fortier admits to being “frustrated” with what she describes as stalled negotiations with federal public servants who have been on strike for eight days now.

“I’m still in the same place where we get offers that are unaffordable and unreasonable. As long as things don’t change, it’s going to be difficult to find a place where we’re going to have an agreement that’s going to be reasonable for Canadians and which is also going to be fair for the employees,” she said Wednesday. on her way to the weekly Liberal caucus meeting.

She did not directly respond to questions from reporters about whether the possibility of back-to-work legislation being invoked was getting any closer. She also wouldn’t comment on whether the Treasury Board’s proposed 9% salary increase over three years is a final offer.

“We will continue to work very hard. We’re still at the table, but I can tell you I’m frustrated this morning because it’s not moving forward,” she dropped.

The Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC), which represents some 155,000 civil servants on strike, is asking for a 13.5% salary increase over three years since it believes that this is more appropriate to the level of the inflation. Teleworking is also one of the main points of contention.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau seemed much more tempered on Wednesday than Ms. Fortier. “We are continuing to make constructive offers. We are hopeful that we will continue to see progress, but it will take the time it takes,” he said.

Asked about the patience of Canadians, which could be eroded in the face of the impacts of the strike on services such as passport renewal, Mr. Trudeau replied that “we are still just [at] a few days since the start of this industrial action”.

“Of course, as Canadians have more difficulty accessing services, worrying about their taxes, the frustrations will mount, but for now, the principles […] of [ right to] strike, to negotiate collective agreements in good faith [are respected]. We are doing the necessary work. »

Last week, on day one of the strike, Mr. Trudeau said that the population would not be “enormously patient” if the walkout lasted “too long”.