Health Care Bargaining Update

Attention members of the Health Care bargaining unit in locals 100, 122, 195, 193, 104;

As you are likely aware, your collective agreement expired on October 31st, 2020. NSGEU started preparations for bargaining shortly after, sending out our membership surveys in December and reviewing the results early in the new year. 

The NSGEU Health Care bargaining committee members then began drafting NSGEU’s bargaining proposals and brought these proposals to the larger Health Care bargaining council, which includes representatives from CUPE and Unifor, on February 10th. At that meeting, the unions shared their proposals and began deciding which proposals we would bring forward to the employers (IWK and NSHA). The Council has scheduled two additional meetings to finalize its proposals and strategy. 

The Council, which is led by NSGEU, began asking the employers for bargaining dates in December 2020. After several further attempts to secure bargaining dates, the employer recently confirmed bargaining dates. The parties have agreed to exchange proposals on Thursday, April 15th. We have eight additional dates scheduled for bargaining, with the final date scheduled for Thursday, May 13th. 

The Executive Council of Health Care Unions, which is made of the leadership of all four unions representing health care workers across the province, and the NSGEU Board of Directors both agreed to select Health Care as lead table in bargaining for this round. The Council of Health Care Unions does not expect this round of bargaining will be as prolonged as the previous round, as the councils now have merged collective agreements in place.  

As a result of the new Health Authorities Act passed by the provincial government in 2014, which merged the nine district health authorities into one, all four unions (NSGEU, CUPE, Unifor & NSNU) now must bargain in four Councils: Health Care, Administrative Professionals, Support Services, and Nursing. NSGEU appoints the Chief Negotiator for the Health Care Council and has the majority of bargaining committee members (NSGEU 6, CUPE 3, Unifor 1). 

NSGEU’s representatives are: 

·         Chief Negotiator is NSGEU Director of Servicing and Negotiations, Shawn Fuller;  

·         Co-Chair is Allan LaPierre;  

·         Chris Weaver;  

·         Cindy Smith; 

·         Peter Perry; 

·         Uta Berthold-Brush; 

·         Sara Jane Arason. 

The Health Care Council has also begun work on negotiating essential services agreements with employer representatives from the IWK and NSHA. These agreements determine the number of employees who must remain at work in the event of a strike. The IWK essential service agreement is complete, and the negotiations for the NSHA agreement are ongoing.  

We will provide an additional update once we meet with the employers in April. If you have questions or concerns about the bargaining process, please contact the NSGEU by calling 1-877-556-7438 or email 

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