Tentative agreement reached with over 46,000 health-care workers

Families, Health Monday, November 26, 2012 11:45 AM

VICTORIA - A tentative two-year agreement has been reached with the Facilities Bargaining Association under government's Cooperative Gains Mandate, Health Minister Margaret MacDiarmid announced today.

The agreement covers over 46,000 health-care workers in more than 270 different jobs across the health-care system including nursing, ambulance service, health records, trades, maintenance, housekeeping, payroll and more.

"By focusing on topics of common interest we have been able to reach an agreement that supports our valued front-line health-care workers, reflects our economic circumstances, and continues to put patient care first," said MacDiarmid. "This was a challenging round of negotiations and I would like to thank the parties for their hard work."

The two-year agreement provides for modest improvements to compensation, totalling three per cent over the life of the agreement, as well as job security provisions for workers. Under cooperative gains, employees will now have eligible drugs covered under PharmaCare, maintaining benefit coverage while contributing to savings.

"With this tentative agreement, more than one-third of unionized public-sector workers are covered by agreements reached under the Cooperative Gains Mandate," said Finance Minister Michael de Jong. "This tentative agreement meets the terms of the Cooperative Gains Mandate established at the outset of negotiations. It provides for modest improvements without adding costs for taxpayers and without sacrificing services to British Columbians."

Additional details of the agreement will be available upon ratification by unions.

The tentative agreement was reached under the B.C. government's 2012 Cooperative Gains Mandate. The 2012 Cooperative Gains Mandate applies to all public-sector employers whose collective agreements expire on or after Dec. 31, 2011.

The mandate gives public sector employers the flexibility to find savings from existing budgets to fund modest wage increases in a way that does not add pressure to the government's bottom line, does not add costs for taxpayers or ratepayers, and does not sacrifice services to British Columbians.

Media Contact:

Ryan Jabs
Media Relations Manager
Ministry of Health
250 952-1887 (media line)

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