Employers continue to violate collective agreement by making classification changes, says HSABC

Arbitration decision to be handed down in November 2012.

logo of the Health Sciences Assocation of B.C. (HSABC/NUPGE)Vancouver (31 Aug. 2012) - In spite of the Health Sciences Association of B.C.'s (HSABC/NUPGE) cease and desist request and an active arbitration about employers’ failure to adhere to certain terms and conditions negotiated in the 2010-2012 Health Sciences Professional Bargaining Association (HSPBA) collective agreement, employers continue to implement classification changes.

HSABC/NUPGE, on behalf of the HSPBA, charged that Health Employers Association of B.C. (HSABC) has contravened the collective agreement by failing or refusing to work towards fulfillment of the objectives outlined for the Joint Classification Committee, negotiated in the 2010-2012 collective agreement.

When the union filed the grievance in November 2011, it advised Health Authorities’ CEOs to cease and desist from implementing the Interim Classification Modifications negotiated in tandem with the terms and conditions of the Joint Classification Committee. The union believes that Health Authorities are prohibited from implementing any of the interim classification modifications because the right to do so is conditional upon the Classification Committee fulfilling its objectives. The committee has not done so.

The arbitration began in April and is expected to conclude in late November, after which the arbitrator’s award will be issued.

In the meantime, employers continue to ignore the agreement and push forward with classification changes that affect health science professionals, most recently sweeping changes in the Fraser Health Authority.

Examples of scenarios that explain if changes have been made to classifications by the employer can be found on HSABC/NUPGE's website.

All health science professionals covered by the HSPBA collective agreement who have been affected by their employer’s implementation of the interim modifications, regardless of whether their position has been red-circled, are asked to contact their steward and to initiate a grievance.

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