Ratification to be conducted by mail-in ballot
Halifax (22 Jan. 2008) - Registered nurses represented by the Nova Scotia Government and General Employees Union (NSGEU/NUPGE) have reached a tentative contract agreement with the Capital District Health Authority.
A ratification vote will be conducted by mail-in ballot.
Union president Joan Jessome says she is pleased with the agreement, given the ongoing battle with the province over the right of health care workers to strike. No strike vote was taken during negotiations.
The proposed settlement applies to approximately 2,400 members of NSGEU Local 97. They have been working without a contract since October 2006.
If approved, the deal will provide three increases of 2.9%, effective on Nov. 1 of 2006, 2007 and 2008, one increase of 2.1%, effective on April 1, 2009, and a separate "long service increment" of 3.5% on April 1, 2008, for RNs with 25 years of service or more.
Jessome says it is the first time the government has taken direct steps to "say thank you" to long-serving nurses and those who are close to retirement, thus encouraging them to remain in the workforce.
A province-wide shortage of approximately 500 nurses is projected in Nova Scotia by 2010. The agreement was reached through conciliation. NUPGE
(Published as n22ja08b.htm)