The 6,500 members represented by the Council of Health Care Unions need to send Stephen McNeil a message that he direct the employers to take bargaining seriously and get a deal done.
Halifax (22 March 2018) — After more than a year of bargaining, the Nova Scotia Health Care Council of Unions is announcing that it will soon hold Nova Scotia’s first-ever province-wide health care bargaining unit strike vote.
Health care unions take province-wide strike vote to back proposals
The Council of Unions says the employer’s representing the Nova Scotia Health Authority (NSHA) and IWK Health Centre has slowed the pace of bargaining significantly over the last 2 months. The Council of Unions have tabled an entire collective agreement package, while the employers have only tabled individual proposals. The Council of Unions believes that the only way to get the NSHA and IWK to take health care bargaining seriously is to initiate a province-wide strike vote.
The Nova Scotia Council of Health Care Unions includes the Nova Scotia Government and General Employees Union (NSGEU/NUPGE), the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), Unifor and Nova Scotia Nurses' Union (NSNU). The health care bargaining unit represents 6,500 health care members. The NSGEU/NUPGE is the chief negotiator with CUPE as the deputy negotiator.
Employers need to take negotiations seriously to get a deal
The 6,500 members represented by the Council of Health Care Unions need to send Stephen McNeil a message that he direct the employers to take bargaining seriously and get a deal done. Considerable time and resources have gone into these negotiations, and it is time to get a deal so the government can refocus their attention on addressing the crisis in health care.
Details of the strike vote will be released in the coming days.
Unions not walking away from bargaining
All the votes of Health Care Bargaining Unit members from all the unions at both the NSHA and IWK will be counted together as required by the constitution. Each of the 4 unions will conduct its own vote, including holding information sessions as required. The result of the vote will be made public.
It is important to note that the Council of Unions is not walking away from the table. There are more conciliation dates set for April and May — and the Council of Unions will be there. The Council of Unions is requesting that the employers to come to the table ready to actually bargain. Health care members from one end of this province to the other deserve a new collective agreement.
The Council of Unions, NSHA and IWK have further conciliation dates set for April 10, 11, and 12, and again on May 2, 3, and 4.
The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 390,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. — NUPGE