Ontario arbitrator rejects freeze, orders wage raises | National Union of Public and General Employees

Ontario arbitrator rejects freeze, orders wage raises

Brian Keller deals blow to McGuinty government restraint plan by ruling in favour of employees at Windsor Regional Hospital.

Windsor (8 Oct. 2010) - An arbitrator has ruled in favour of increases to wages, shift premiums and benefits for 400 members of the Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU/NUPGE) at the Windsor Regional Hospital.

The hospital argued that increases should be denied due to the compensation restraining plan proposed by the Ontario Liberal government of Premier Dalton McGuinty (which proposes a public sector wage freeze) and also because of the institution's “dire" financial situation.

However, Arbitrator Brian Keller ruled that “it is good labour relations to prefer a central pattern where one exists” and he went on to award members the same increases included in the Hospital Professionals Division (HPD) Central Agreement.

"The board notes wage increases given to other employees in the hospital for this period, wage increases given to employees elsewhere performing the same work, and further notes that the union is not asking for wage parity.... Nor is it looking for 'catch up'," Keller wrote.

"It is looking, however, for the same across the board increases as granted to other employees in the hospital and employees employed elsewhere in the same work. Accordingly, the board awards a 2.5% across the board increase for Schedule A employees and, in keeping with the earlier interim awarded, a 3.5% across the board wage increase for Schedule B employees."

NUPGE

The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 340,000 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

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Read full text of arbitrator's decision - pdf

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