October 10, 2012
VANCOUVER—In the wake of tentative agreements reached in the master provincial government workers’ (BCGEU) and nurses’ bargaining (NBA), the Health Science Professionals Bargaining Association (HSPBA) and Health Employers Association of BC (HEABC) return to the bargaining table this week.
The bargaining association is optimistic that the tentative agreements achieved at those two tables signals a willingness by government to return to the health science professionals bargaining table with an appetite to bargain.
Both those tables have achieved tentative agreements under the cooperative gains mandate. And while the nurses’ agreement includes an attack on benefits that the unions cannot support, the direct government service tentative agreement does not. The HSPBA believes it is possible to get to a deal that does not erode benefits, and will take that message to the table.
In addition, a significant win in the continuing dispute regarding the application of interim classification modifications agreed to in the 2010-2012 collective agreement should also help kick-start concerted bargaining at the health science professionals’ table.
Bargaining dates have been set aside for this week and next.
CUPE represents approximately 500 members in the HSPBA which has over 17,000 members, the majority of whom are represented by the HSA. Other Unions at the table are BCGEU, PEA and HEU.