CAW Members Ratify Agreements at Hotel Dieu Grace Hospital

December 14, 2009, 10:19 AM EST

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CAW Local 2458 members have overwhelmingly ratified three-year collective agreements covering four bargaining units at Hotel Dieu Grace Hospital in Windsor, Ontario.

The agreements include wage increases of six per cent over the three years, increases to premiums, as well as a seventh week of vacation after 28 years of service. In addition, there are further wage adjustments to specific classifications in some units.

These CAW bargaining units cover 280 service workers, 140 registered practical nurses, 230 office and clerical workers and 25 skilled trades workers. The service group voted 98 per cent in favour; office and clerical 97 per cent; the engineers 94 per cent and RPNs 86 per cent.

These agreements model the pattern of settlements at CAW hospitals across the province, which are modest but fair, said Tullio DiPonti, CAW Local 2458 financial secretary. They reflect a respectful relationship between the hospital and the union, he said.

"Our members who work in hospitals are the backbone of the health care system in Windsor, and face incredible risks and challenges that need to be recognized; when health care workers are taken care of, the entire system works better," DiPonti said.

CAW Local 2458 President Bruce Dickie said it's a big contrast to the situation at Windsor Regional Hospital, which has yet to reach agreement with its 700 CAW members.

"Windsor Regional Hospital CEO David Musyj has clearly and publicly stated he has no intention of negotiating any improvements whatsoever for front-line workers who put themselves at risk on a daily basis without even the simple right to refuse unsafe work," Dickie said.

"One must wonder why Hotel Dieu is able to negotiate a fair settlement, while Windsor Regional not only refuses to settle, but will also put employees out of work by closing the doors at Malden Park next year. The least they could do is give these employees some peace of mind with a collective agreement in place."

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