B.C. nurses approve collective agreement with pay increase, workload changes

Deal includes wage premiums for work on understaffed units

Nurses in B.C. will get a two per cent annual wage increase in a new three-year collective agreement.

Details of the deal between the Nurses’ Bargaining Association and the Health Employers’ Association of B.C. also include wage premiums if employers don’t meet staffing levels they have agreed to.

Starting on April 1, 2020, nurses will receive an additional $5 an hour if they are working short on a unit, department or program with 10 or fewer scheduled nurses.

There are other premiums as well for nurses who work in units that are understaffed and for those who agree to work a shift on short notice.

READ MORE: New contract would force B.C. health authorities to hire new nurses or pay millions

The agreement takes effect April 1 and expires March 31, 2022.

The BC Nurses’ Union says 54 per cent of the more than 21,000 ballots cast in a ratification vote supported the agreement, which was reached in November.

“I believe we have negotiated an innovative contract that will make a positive impact on the working lives of our members and the patients in their care,” union president Christine Sorensen said in a statement on Friday. “However, nurses have sent a clear message to the government that they are skeptical real change will come.”

The union says a province-wide survey in 2017 showed staffing and workload were the biggest concerns for nurses in contract negotiations.

“Unsustainable workload coupled with a systemic nursing shortage has a direct impact on a nurse’s ability to provide safe patient care. Our members have spoken,” Sorensen said. “While more needs to be done, this contract is a step in the right direction.”

The Nurses’ Bargaining Association represents about 44,000 registered, psychiatric and licensed practical nurses in B.C.

The agreement also provides community nurses with improved mileage expenses.

As well, nurses will be paid for previously unpaid work at the ends of their shifts when they provide information to those replacing them.

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Gas prices spike in northern B.C. ahead of the long weekend

Fuel went up 17 cents overnight in Prince Rupert

OP-ED: Striking a balance with the oil tanker moratorium

Dennis Patterson, Senator for Nunavut, on protecting Canada’s environment and economy with Bill C-48

Over $70,000 in grants for crime prevention on the North Coast

Three organizations on Haida Gwaii, Prince Rupert and Bella Coola will receive support

MP Nathan Cullen to testify at oil tanker ban committee hearings

Senators travel to Prince Rupert and Terrace as part of fact-finding mission on Bill C-48

VIDEO: Alberta man creates world’s biggest caricature

Dean Foster is trying to break the world record for a radio show contest

Should B.C. lower speed limits on side roads to 30 km/h?

Vancouver city councillor wants to decrease speed limits along neighbourhood side roads

Lawsuit eyed over union-only raise for B.C. community care workers

‘Low-wage redress’ leaves 17,000 employees out, employers say

Landlord of alleged Okanagan shooter recounts deadly day

Tony Friesen was working in one of the units of his Penticton building when he heard shots

Foreign national arrested in connection to thefts at YVR

A woman, 60, is being held in police custody as Richmond RCMP investigate

Police pursue pesky porker on Vancouver Island

‘This was allegedly not the pig’s first escape’

Westjet tries again to dismiss proposed class-action lawsuit alleging discrimination

Former flight attendant claims airline broke contractual promise to create harassment-free workplace

Man airlifted to hospital after apparent hunting incident in East Kootenay

The man was in stable condition when he was flown out of Fairmont Hot Springs to a Calgary hospital

Police probe eight fires set at B.C. elementary school

Nanaimo RCMP say fires appear to have been set intentionally

Most Read