Toronto – The Ontario Hospital Association (OHA) and the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) announced today that they have reached a negotiated tentative three-year collective agreement for hospital employees. The settlement, covering 18,000 hospital employees at 56 hospitals, helps ensure significant labour stability over the next few years during an anticipated period of change in Ontario’s health care system.
This is the third successive, freely negotiated, agreement between CUPE and OHA — a first — in a sector where contract negotiations are routinely resolved through arbitration. The tentative settlement features contract improvements and a wage increase in each of the three years of the contract that runs from September 29, 2006 to September 28, 2009.
“Both CUPE and the OHA recognized that a negotiated collective agreement is in the best interests of hospital employees and, as a result, our patients,” said OHA President and CEO Hilary Short. “The hard work of CUPE and the OHA has resulted in this voluntary agreement and set the stage for an even more productive working relationship over the next several years.”
Both parties have agreed to ratification no later than July 14, 2006.
“The next few years will be a period of rapid change and many challenges in the hospital sector. CUPE’s hospital membership was clear they wanted contract improvements and a speedy resolve to bargaining in order to focus efforts on continuing to provide quality public health services,” said Michael Hurley, the president of the Ontario Council of Hospital Unions (OCHU/CUPE), which represents 32,000 Ontario hospital employees.
CUPE and the OHA would like to extend their sincere thanks and appreciation to mediator Bill Kaplan for his key role in assisting the parties in reaching this collective agreement.
The tentative settlement covers trades, maintenance, dietary assistants, custodial, materials management and clerical staff, and 3,600 nurses.
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