Parameds back at table with mediator, HEABC Jan. 15 - #4

Bargaining bulletin

In the meantime, union bargaining association agrees not to escalate job action

In a late-breaking development Thursday afternoon, the paramedical professional bargaining association has agreed to labour minister Dale Lovick’s request to resume talks with mediator Brian Foley and health employers. Those talks are scheduled to begin Friday.

And the unions will comply with Lovick’s request not to escalate job action during mediation, but planned job action for Friday and the weekend will proceed.

On Monday, the bargaining association will repeat this week’s rotating “paramedical professional days” starting with rehabilitation therapists. No picket lines are planned.

Meanwhile, HEU’s clinical perfusionists went to essential services levels on Thursday. They were part of this week’s round of rotating job action.

After mediated talks broke down last week, the paramedical professional bargaining association, with the Health Sciences Association as the lead union, announced that a different group of their members would be at essential service levels each day from Tuesday to Friday.

When Foley booked out of the last round of talks, he said the parties were too far apart to come to an agreement. The issues still unresolved include classification, on-call pay, provincial seniority, levelling, scheduling and long-term disability.

“We hope that the employer has felt enough pressure from the job action this week to get serious when mediation starts tomorrow,” said HEU secretary-business manager Chris Allnutt. “We are hopeful that a future escalation in job action can be averted with these talks, but if not, HEU members are prepared to show their solidarity on the picket line.”

Lab workers (including lab technologists) are off-the-job Friday. All paramedical workers go to essential services levels on the weekend.

Also this weekend, HEU will run ads in Vancouver area dailies supporting its clinical perfusionist members.