Agreement ratified by Healthcare Food Services members

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March 26, 2018

Recently, approximately 86 unionized employees at Healthcare Food Services in Orleans secured a three-year agreement.

Initially, there was a fear that due to the recent minimum wage increases that this round of bargaining would require concessions. However, the Union Negotiating Committee achieved creative solutions to secure an agreement with no concessions that also improves a number of working conditions. This includes the creation of six new full-time positions.

Full-time employees, which comprise about 51% of the workforce, receive a signing bonus of $600 plus increases totalling 80 cents per hour over the contract term. Part-time receive a $150 signing bonus plus hourly rate increases of up to $1 per hour based on years of service effective March 25, 2018. Part-time employees in the progression grid also receive an improved annual increase of at least 30 cents per hour. Going forward, Members will receive the greater of the above or the new wage scale which takes any future minimum wage changes into consideration.

If the employer cancels a shift with less than 48 hours’ notice, the affected employees receive four hours pay at their regular rate for that shift.

Vacation language improves to permit employees to request one week of their vacation entitlement to begin mid-week for travel purposes. In addition, members may use up to one week of vacation as individual days.

Float days increase to 3.5 per year, up from 2.5, for full-time, and two per year, up from one, for part-time. Also, the employer will pay employees’ first two days of emergency leave, in addition to the existing allowed sick days, for reasons that don’t fall under language already providing for paid leaves in the agreement.

Part-time employees may now opt-in to the benefit plan on a voluntary basis to receive vision care coverage. Going forward, the employer will recognize any Statutory holidays declared by the government as paid holidays for the employees. In addition, Stewards receive two paid days every other year for Union education-related leaves of absence.

Members ratified the contract on March 25, 2018.

Union Negotiating Committee: Joanne Crispin, Lucie Goyette, Brad Stewart, Union Servicing Rep Sandra Proulx, and Regional Director Daniel Mercier.