Members at Country Estates Retirement achieve their first contract

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May 23, 2019

On May 22, 2019, the health care workers at Country Estates Retirement Home in Lindsay ratified their first collective agreement as Union members with UFCW Local 175.

Bargaining for this first agreement at Country Estates Retirement Home required the use of Ministry of Labour (MOL) conciliation services. The employer had been delaying negotiations and would not agree to the Home being covered under the Hospital Labour Disputes Arbitration Act (HLDAA). As a result, the Union had filed for a No Board to be issued, which means that negotiations had reached an impasse heading into conciliation.

The agreement includes raises for all employees at Country Estates Retirement Home of 2% in each year of the agreement term plus an additional 1% in the third year. Language also ensures shifts will be a minimum of four hours.

The employees will now receive a health care spending account. For full-time, this account will provide $500 per year, and part-time will receive $250 annually. In addition, full-time employees will have three paid sick days each year.

Since this is a first agreement, the employees will now benefit from a grievance and arbitration procedure, Steward representation, and a Union Rep whose access and visitation to the workplace have been formalized in the language.

Scheduling will now be done in order of seniority and vacation entitlement will improve. The agreement contains language to form a Labour Management Committee to promote a harmonious workplace as well. Other language negotiated provides paid bereavement leave of two days for immediate family, and paid leave up to three days for jury/witness duty. Employees now get a meal allowance and travel expenses paid when required to attend a course as well.

The employer will contribute $100 toward the UFCW Local 175 Training & Education Fund, and it will also pay for 50% of the cost to print copies of the new collective agreement for the employees.

Country Estates Retirement Home employees will be covered under HLDAA to resolve any issues that may arise in future bargaining.

Union Negotiator: Union Rep Casey Magee

The employees at Country Estates joined the Union early last year! Read about their organizing campaign here.

Find out why Health Care workers benefit from belonging to our Union!