(OTTAWA) Canadians may lose patience if the labor dispute between 155,000 federal public servants and the government continues, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau warned on Wednesday. However, he did not want to go further on the conditions that would justify a special law on the return to work.

“This is the first day of a union disruption,” he said before the weekly Liberal caucus meeting. We have work to do at the bargaining table. We have proposals on the table. We should commit to that. We are not going to pre-empt the reflection. »

“We had an offer on the table Monday night which they didn’t respond to before going on strike,” he said.

Mr. Trudeau called on the Public Service Alliance and the Treasury Board to break the deadlock. Both parties indicated Tuesday evening that they remained at the negotiating table.

“It’s what Canadians expect and I know Canadians aren’t going to be very patient if this continues,” he said.

Treasury Board President Mona Fortier said she’s optimistic the talks are progressing. “I’m confident there will be an agreement,” she said.

The government assures that essential services will be maintained, but taxpayers who are waiting for a tax refund may have to be patient. Processing of tax returns is on hold, but the April 30 deadline for filing remains.

The delivery of passports will also be difficult. Only new requests made for urgent or humanitarian reasons will be processed.

Employment Insurance benefits, pension, War Veterans Allowance, Old Age Security and Guaranteed Income Supplement will continue to be paid.

Ms. Fortier is due to take stock Wednesday noon with the Minister of Employment and Social Development, Karina Gould, the Minister of National Revenue, Diane Lebouthillier and the Minister of Immigration, Sean Fraser.

The union is demanding a 13.5% wage increase over three years, while the government is offering 9% instead. Job security and the addition of telecommuting in the collective agreement are among the points in dispute.

More details to come.