St. Norbert Personal Care Home - Local 368 - Bargaining Brief
Updated: Apr 07, 2021
Approx. Number of Members: 90
Current Contract Expires: June 26, 2017
MGEU Staff Negotiator: Loren Findlay
Elected Bargaining Committee Members: Cosmedine Rosario, President Mercy Puznak, Chief Steward Angela Hansen, Vice-President
LATEST BARGAINING NEWS
The St. Norbert PCH - Local 368 Bargaining Committee once again collected bargaining proposals from members, both on-line and through the mail.The deadline to submit proposals was Friday, October 30. Please stay tuned for a meeting (as public health guidelines allow) where members can vote on the latest proposals.
Overview of bargaining so farBy the end of 2017, even though all HCSS agreements had expired and MGEU Bargaining Committees were ready and eager to get going, negotiations had not begun. Employers — including Beacon Hill, Poseidon, Golden Door, and St. Norbert — were unwilling to schedule bargaining dates.
One issue was that in 2017, the government announced they wanted HCSS workers in each health region to be covered by one union and one collective agreement — but did not proclaim the legislation (Bill 29) until May 2018. During that time, the employers at the private PCHs refused to come to the table until they knew for sure that their employees would not be involved in representation votes. Once the Bill was proclaimed, the MGEU pressured private employers to finally sit down and begin negotiations -- however, they said since public sector negotiations would be delayed due to the Bill 29 union representation votes, private sector bargaining could not begin either.
The union representation votes that delayed all health care sector bargaining wrapped up in late August 2019 and members moved to their new unions in December 2019.
MGEU and the Beacon Hill
Lodge - Local 80 Bargaining Committee remained committed to getting on with
negotiating a new contract for Local 80 as soon as possible.
After the votes concluded, the MGEU met with
the Local presidents of private PCH Locals and, because so much
time had passed, it was agreed to schedule new proposal meetings. However,
before the union could meet with all members, the pandemic hit and public health
restrictions made continuing with meetings impossible.
In 2017, the government also announced that they would not consider giving any public service workers any general pay increase for the first two years of their new contract. This would include all HCSS members who work in public PCHs.
The employers of the private PCHs continue to tell the MGEU that since there is no money for the public PCHs, the private PCHs will not get funding either.
This is not fair. So along with other Manitoba unions, the MGEU formed the Partnership to Defend Public Services to challenge the government in court they’re doing goes against Canadian laws – all workers have the right to negotiate a fair contract, including their wages.
The trial was held over a few days in November 2019. MGEU President Michelle Gawronsky took the stand as the 4th PDPS witness. Economists, other labour leaders, labour relations experts, as well as several MGEU staff were also called to testify.
All of this testimony added to the body of evidence placed before the judge, which already includes 37 affidavits and more than 100 pages of agreed upon facts.
In January 2020, the PDPS and the Government filed their written
arguments with the court. Final arguments were heard over three days in
On June 11, Court of Queen's Bench Justice McKelvey
ruled that the government's wage freeze law, the Public Services
Sustainability Act (Bill 28), and its actions to impede collective
bargaining with Manitoba's public sector workers are a violation of the
Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
On August 17, the Pallister government announced that they would be appealing the judge's decision. The government had until January 2021 to submit supporting documentation for its appeal by the end of January 2021 and the Partnership to Defend Pubic Services (PDPS)
(which includes the MGEU and other public-sector unions) then had
30 days to file material in response. The government's appeal is
expected to be heard in court this spring.
While this goes forward, dates in November 2021 have also been set by the court for the second part of the Court of Queen’s Bench trial, to determine any additional remedies that go beyond having Bill 28struck down. Meanwhile, the MGEU and the other PDPS partners continue to focus on trying to get back to the bargaining table.