Union wins $8 million interest decision on comparability/pay equity settlement

Victory also includes money for LTD recipients Arbitrator Stephen Kelleher has resolved the disputed issue of outstanding interest owing on HEUís recent comparability/pay equity victory by establishing a framework whereby up to $8 million will be shared equally by eligible members covered by the settlement. In an April 7 decision, Kelleher rejects employer arguments that would have reduced the interest owing on the $25.8 million in pay equity adjustments retroactive to April 1, 1996 to about $4 million. The Health Employers Association of B.C. and HEU have entered into discussions to set the exact interest amount and the date it will be paid to members. HEU members who are covered by the comparability/pay equity settlement and who were employees as of May 1, 2000 will receive a prorated, equal share of the interest owing. Prorating will be determined according to the number of hours worked between April 1, 1999 and March 31, 2000. For example, a member who worked full time during that period will receive a full share, while someone who worked half time will receive a half share. The arbitrator agreed with the union that HEU members on long term disability who work at facilities covered by the award would also be eligible to receive a share of the interest settlement. This means that many members on LTD will receive an interest payment and it will not be clawed back by the Health Benefit Trust, which is an important economic gain for disabled union members, says HEU secretary business manager Chris Allnutt.