Message from the UNA Local 115 Executive (Aug / Sep 2004)

Message from President Michelle Senkow

Welcome to September 2004. I am hoping that you were able to catch some of the sunny days of summer and had a restful holiday.

Following the June ratification of the UNA/PHAA agreement we have been busy with the new and changed articles of the Collective agreement. Our support continues to the LTC facilities that still have not settled on an agreement.

Short staffing situations lead to PRC’s (Professional Responsibility Committee) reports during the summer and occupational health concerns lead to continued committee work for Local 115. Grievances continue about scheduling and rotations.

Continued support and education of our members promoted the many opportunities for union education that occurred this September. Ward rep, committee members, general members and executive will be attending fall union education to support our union efforts. Thanks to all that entered the draws.

Congratulations to our new UNA members and new registered nurse and registered psychiatric nurse graduates. As you embark on your nursing career enjoy and be confident in your nursing profession. Your union and advocates are here to answer questions and assist you with any areas of concern.

Welcome to the new UNA Local 115 Website. Thank of the last agreement (from April 1, 2003 onward) then we believe they would be entitled to the increase in the hourly rates. Members should write to WCB and request they adjust their compensation rate in accordance with the retroactive salary increase pursuant to the new collective agreement between PHAA and UNA.

PROFESSIONAL DUES

The number (684.6) hours required to be eligible for reimbursement for professional dues (AARN & RPNAA) are now defined. In addition, you may be eligible for reimbursement for any other professional dues that are acceptable to your Employer.

Meal Periods

Nurses can request a meal period longer than 30 minutes as long as the extended meal period is compatible with work assignments. Your Employer cannot unreasonable deny your request.

DAY DUTY

Day duty defined as the majority of hours falling between 0700 and 1500 hours. Minimum day duty is guaranteed 2/5th (40%) of the time unless it is mathematically impossible.

For groups that currently have 1/2 guaranteed this will be maintained unless the delivery of client care requires a change.

If meeting the day duty requirement is not possible, day duty will be reduced only to the extent necessary.

PERMANENT SHIFT

Vacant positions can be posted with a permanent night, evening, or night and evening shift pattern. When nurses apply for a posted vacancy they are considered to have requested the permanent shift pattern.

Nurses working a permanent shift pattern can request a change to their shift pattern after 12 months and the Employer must post a new shift schedule with a 12 weeks posting period.

In addition, Employee shift patterns may be changed at any time if the Union or the Employees develops a shift schedule that is contract compliant. The Employer cannot
unreasonably refuse to implement the schedule.

WEEKENDS

The guarantee of 9 out of 12 weekends is maintained for nurses who currently have it, unless delivery of client care requires a change.

SCHEDULE CHANGES

An Employer cannot unreasonably deny a request for a shift change from a nurse if there is no additional cost.

Schedules can be changed with less than 14 days notice, if the nurse and her Employer both agree. The parties must agree on each exchange request. If there is no mutual agreement the 2X penalty rate applies for the first shift.

Part time nurses can agree to change their scheduled day of rest with less than 14 days notice. The nurse and the Employer must agree each time there is a request for an exchange.

ON CALL AND CALL-BACK

Changes to the on-call duty roster with less than 14 days notice can occur by agreement between the Employee and the Employer. Both parties must agree to each exchange request.

Unless there is agreement between a nurse and their Employer the nurse cannot be assigned on call for more than 7 consecutive days, longer than 72 consecutive hours and, if possible, one weekend in four off duty with a minimum of two weekends off in five.

TRANSPORTATION

Nurses who are required by the Employer to use their own vehicle receive a new $130 a month allowance (pro-rated for part-time & casual) in addition to the regular reimbursement of insurance costs. On July 9, 2004 the mileage rate goes up from 35 cents/kms to 38 cents/kms.

ORIENTATION

If a nurse is absent for more than 6 months the Employer must provide appropriate re-orientation. The length of the orientation and how it is provided will be determined after consulting with the nurse and their immediate supervisor.

(Please check our October 2004 Newsletter for the 2nd installment of this article).

Sincerely,

Michelle M. Senkow
President, UNA Local 115

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