- Wednesday, May 27, 2015
The Saskatchewan Association of Health Organizations Inc. (SAHO) tabled a final offer to the Health Sciences Association of Saskatchewan (HSAS) on April 10, 2015 following 20 months of negotiations. HSAS rejected SAHO’s final offer, and SAHO submitted an application to the Saskatchewan Labour Relations Board to have an independent vote conducted among HSAS members. Members have voted to reject SAHO’s final offer.
The vote had a 63% response rate from the membership, with 80% of those responding rejecting SAHO’s final offer.
“We are disappointed that HSAS members have rejected the final offer. The collective agreement expired on March 31, 2013. SAHO has been engaged in ongoing negotiations with HSAS, and we have yet to reach an agreement that works for all parties. We applied to the Labour Relations Board to conduct a vote among the employees, after negotiations reached a stalemate,” said Doug Forseth, CEO, SAHO.”
Included in the final offer from SAHO were wage increases of 1.5%-1.5%-1.55% and 1.95%, along with enhanced premiums. HSAS is taking issue with SAHO’s proposal offering 20 months of retroactivity for time spent bargaining. HSAS is demanding 26+ months of retroactivity, with the final number of months being determined according to when an agreement is finally reached, as the timeline extends further.
“There is an increasing focus on achieving a timely conclusion to bargaining. Reaching a settlement in a reasonable period provides assurance to both employees and employers, as both benefit from the stability that a concluded agreement brings,” stated Forseth. “SAHO believes the offer to be fair and equitable and comparable to other recently settled healthcare agreements. With the rejection, the bargaining impasse will continue.”
SAHO is a non-profit, non-government association responsible for providing collective bargaining, labour relations and classification/job evaluation services to health regions, the Saskatchewan Cancer Agency and affiliated agencies throughout the province.