#1Wage policy gives new bargaining committee ambitious mandate, clear direction to win fair contract

Bargaining bulletin

Fresh from a positive three-day bargaining demands conference, HEU’s new Provincial Bargaining Committee will be pressing forward to begin preparations for the important upcoming round of facility/community sector negotiations. These talks cover roughly 95 per cent of HEU’s 46,000 members who work in hospitals, long term care facilities, and health ministry- funded community services.

The first task for the committee—which begins with a three-day orientation meeting starting Nov. 7—will be to meld the hundreds of bargaining demands approved at HEU’s wage policy conference in late October into a comprehensive package to table to employers when negotiations start. At the conference, demands were placed within a six point priority framework which included:

  • employment security and privatization protection;
  • one contract for all;;
  • safe workplaces;;
  • wages, benefits and pay equity;;
  • pension justice; and;
  • training opportunities.;
Members of the new bargaining committee include Leo Bibo from Vancouver General, Sheila Rowswell from GF Strong, Barb Burke from Penticton, David Lowther frm Victoria General, Laura Neil from Royal Jubilee, Bob Peacock from Broadway Pentecostal, Dave Santella from the community social services local Pioneer House, Chris Duckett from Powell River, Frank McCann from Royal Columbian, and Ronnie Nicolasora from the Tilbury local.

HEU president Fred Muzin, financial secretary Mary LaPlante, and secretary-business manager Chris Allnutt are also on the committee. Allnutt is the union’s chief bargaining spokesperson.

Meanwhile, in an important bargaining development at the union’s 22nd biennial convention which preceded the wage policy conference, delegates approved an increase in strike pay from $200 a week to $250 a week, a clear signal of delegates determination to win a fair contract settlement.