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Hospital Support Newsletter Autumn 2016

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Message from the Chair

On the horizon: 2017 bargaining

Dear Sector 11 members,

Since members of Sector 11 voted in favour of a coordinated bargaining strategy at an earlier divisional meeting, your executive is planning to align expiry dates, and improve contract language where it has dipped below industry standards. We are now ready to co-ordinate bargaining dates with more than half of our units.

We are also very concerned with the growing threat by many employers to contract out more and more of our jobs. In our next rounds of bargaining we will reinforce our efforts to stop this trend. We will make it our priority to improve all job security articles, and to protect our members from having their work being performed by outside agencies.

No matter which collective agreement applies to our members, we will fight back against contracting out, and efforts by employers to weaken job security.

As always, your input is valuable to maintaining our strength as an OPSEU sector. Don’t hesitate to contact myself or any member of the divisional executive with your thoughts and concerns.

In Solidarity,

Jill McIllwraith, Acting Chair

Sector 11 contact information

Jill McIllwraith, A/Chair, georgiajill@hotmail.com

Lauren MacLaren, Secretary, opseu.sec.bps@outlook.com

Lisa Hovinga, Treasurer, lhovinga67@hotmail.com

Harjinder (Harry) Sangha, Collective Bargaining, gogiman2000@msn.com

Jon Hopkins, Education & Communication,jonhopkins369@gmail.com

Leonardo Ho, Health & Safety, leonardoho@gmail.com

Lynne Easter, Negotiator, leaster@opseu.org

Sector 11 Goals

  • Develop strong demand setting and member engagement in advance of bargaining.
  • Co-ordinate union activities across Sector 11.
  • Participate inside OPSEU to promote and support the aims, purposes and goals of all 130,000 OPSEU members.

Pre-bargaining conference recap

Several months ago, dozens of members of the Hospital Support Division gathered in Toronto to share information and prepare for bargaining. Several OPSEU staff members also attended to share their expertise and advice on how we can become a stronger division.

OPSEU supervisor of communications, Randy Robinson, provided us with an insightful analysis of hospital funding cuts and the impact they’re having on the quality of health care in Ontario.

Randy was followed by Terri Aversa, an OPSEU health and safety officer, who encouraged us to treat our collective agreements as a health and safety document. Collective agreements can be an important tool that promotes the psychological well-being of workers, she told us. They can also help reduce the risk of harm in the workplace.

Working in small groups, Sector 11 members were guided by OPSEU staff members Gwen Jenkins and Rona Rigotti, on the skills involved in mapping industry standards. They explained that too many of our collective agreements fail to adequately address this issue, and that stronger contract language is badly needed.

Neil Martin, a former OPSEU health and safety officer, discussed the need for employers to proactively assess and develop policies to reduce the risk of workplace violence.

A big “thank you” to all members (first time and returning) who attended this important Sector 11 conference!

May 31 rally at Queen’s Park

On May 31, Sector 11 executive members attended a rally at Queen’s Park organized by the Ontario Health Coalition. They heard the results of a referendum held on the issue of funding cuts to our health care system. More than 93,000 people voted in favour of ending the cuts, and to demand that the federal government increase funding to the provinces in this round of negotiations on the Canada Health Accord. Ontario New Democratic Party Leader Andrea Horwath and Progressive Conservative Leader Patrick Brown addressed the rally, and pledged to present the results of the referendum to Premier Kathleen Wynne.