Mediator appointed to aid first contract talks with Compass

Bargaining bulletin

The Labour Relations Board has appointed mediator Debbie Cameron to help settle a first contract covering more than 200 HEU members employed by Compass Group to provide housekeeping and dietary services in Provincial Health Services Authority facilities.

The appointment comes in response to the union’s request for mediation yesterday under Section 55 of the Labour Code, and after members voted 99 per cent in favour of job action earlier this week. The LRB has also instructed the parties to begin negotiating essential services levels.

Talks with Compass broke down June 22 with little accomplished since bargaining began five months ago for the U.K.-based corporation’s PHSA employees who work at the B.C. Cancer Agency, B.C. Children’s and Women’s Hospital and Sunnyhill Hospital for Children.

HEU secretary-business manager Judy Darcy says that the union hopes an agreement will be reached shortly now that a mediator is in place.

“Compass needs to step up to the plate and settle a solid first collective agreement with our members.

“We have successfully reached contracts with the company’s two main competitors, Sodexho and Aramark, and those agreements are helping to bring stability to the workplace and improve the quality of care to patients,” says Darcy. “We expect nothing less from Compass.”