United Way Canada LogoUnited Way British Columbia (UWBC) and CUPE 1760 have agreed to increase extended health coverage to a combined maximum of $1,200 per year per person for accessing psychologists (including clinical psychologists), registered clinical counsellors, social workers, and online cognitive behavioural therapists.

This agreement was reached outside of the collective bargaining process, which is currently paused, but the proposal to increase coverage originated from a union bargaining proposal. This change is effective now, rather than waiting for the completion of collective bargaining. Members can access information on their extended health coverage at https://service.pac.bluecross.ca/member/login/ and are encouraged to make use of their benefits to support their personal health and wellness.

“We are pleased to see this increase in coverage applied now. It reflects the timely need for mental health supports, a priority of our members”, said CUPE 1760 President Lena Shillington.

CUPE 1760 has also achieved the conversion of 12 temporary status jobs to regular status. This reflects a major priority of the union to address precarious work through collective bargaining and through the application of existing collective agreement terms between the parties. Every job converted from temporary to regular gains access to the full terms and conditions the collective agreement provides. These additional rights for members becoming regular include seniority, full access to benefits, sick time, vacation, layoff and recall rights, long term disability, and enrolment in the pension plan.

“We are proud of this significant improvement to our members’ working conditions, with more work to be done to continue converting jobs from temporary to regular, where appropriate,” said Shillington.

The arbitration between CUPE 1760 and UWBC on the subject of pay rates in regions outside of the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley will proceed on April 19 and 20, with a decision by the arbitrator expected shortly thereafter. Members will be notified of the outcome via a bulletin similar to this one.