No move on general wage increase, no to job security

Bargaining bulletin

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The Health Employers Association of BC came to the table Monday with exactly the same position on general wage increases that they opened with 12 days ago.

Despite a significant shift at the bargaining table last week by health unions, HEABC once again proposed an annual general wage increase of 1.5 per cent for union members whose wages were slashed by ten times that amount two years ago.

So far, health employers have not tabled a response on job security.

And today, they signaled their intent to contract out at least two hundred more workers before the current agreement expires on March 31.

"HEABC's hard line speaks volumes about their lack of understanding for the financial hardship and constant uncertainty facing health care workers,” says Facilities Bargaining Association spokesperson Judy Darcy.

“There"s little evidence at these talks of government’s new approach to public sector negotiations.

“The position they tabled today was confrontational. There is really no other way to describe it.”

While health employers made some movement on union proposals to fast-track special adjustments for targeted job categories, it was limited to trades and IT workers.

For these groups they proposed a $3 increase in year one, and 50 cents in each of the following three years.

But they largely ignored the FBA’s proposal to expand the number of job classifications due special adjustments adding just LPN supervisors and orthopedic techs to the list.

HEABC again tabled a $3700 signing bonus--the FBA is proposing $4700--and held firm on several other non-monetary issues.

“The FBA unions will meet Tuesday to prepare our response to HEABC at the bargaining table,” says Darcy.