HSPBA UPDATE: 37.5-hour workweek issues resolved

February 17, 2016

BURNABY – As you know, the grievances and subsequent arbitrations surrounding the transition to the 37.5-hour work week resulted from a failure of the health authorities to follow the consultation process required by the Memorandum of Understanding (Appendix 27 – Re: Transition to 37.5-Hour Work Week. See p. 186 of the Collective Agreement).

Three CUPE locals were involved in this issue. Two of these locals decided to reach a settlement through a mediation/arbitration process with Vince Ready and Corinne Bell. CUPE Local 4816 declined the employer’s settlement offer, which was substantially lower than that offered by Vancouver Coastal Health and Island Health (formerly known as Vancouver Island Health Authority or VIHA).  CUPE 4816 elected to go forward with an arbitrated decision. (See previous updates).

The Island Health agreement affecting members in CUPE Local 1978 was reached on Nov. 17, 2015. The Vancouver Coastal Health agreement affecting members in CUPE Local 15 was reached in principle on June 12 and finalized on Nov. 5. The award for CUPE Local 4816 Fraser Health workers was announced on Dec. 18.  The outcome, which was similar for all three, resulted in 10-12 paid days off to be used by the successful grievors throughout the life of the collective agreement.

The general criteria used to determine which grievors qualified for redress were:

  • Members had to have submitted a grievance.
  • There had to have been a demonstrable violation of the Process Award (see Part A and Part B).
  • Members had to have been in a department that was covered by the Process Award when the grievance was filed, and;
  • Members had to have remained in a department covered by the grievances to have the full benefit of the settlement. Grievors who moved departments, either before or after the settlement, may suffer a reduction or elimination of their redress, depending on the particular circumstances.

Please note that each health authority had different earned-days-off policies and practices. The particular details and terms of each settlement or decision, although similar, are specific to the facts of each respective health authority.

The Health Presidents Council would like to thank all the stewards, members, and local officers who diligently pursued these grievances.

Full details of the settlements and award can be seen below.

1)    Island Health VIHA

2)    Vancouver Coastal Health Authority

3)    Fraser Valley Health