Message from Treasurer Malcolm Weisgerber
Once again the nurses of Alberta have a renewed contract for the next three years, and a first contract with Alberta Health Services. And as befitting anything with Alberta Health Ser-vices the negotiation process was not without its controversies and drama.
It started with UNA members, at the November demand setting meeting, accepting the strategy of the short list, rather than the usual multi-page document of contract changes. As anticipated it set AHS back on their heels and totally caught them off guard. From that first meeting it was one thing after the other, which culminated in the ratification of the contract.
Although we did not achieve everything on the short list there were some major victories beyond the scope of the short list. The new letters of under-standing represent huge gains, which will have a major impact on nurses, job security and job creation. Despite the original offer from the employer, there were no, absolutely no rollbacks from the last contract.
It was a wild ride, so to speak, and in the words of our illustrious chief negotiator “you can’t make this s_ _ t up!” Both he and our president acknowledged that although every round of negotiation is different, this was the most different they have encountered.
As this was my first time on the provincial negotiating team, despite a huge learning curve, I am very impressed with the process and the whole team. I thank the members of Local 115 and South Central District for allowing me this opportunity and I hope one day in the future to do so again.
UNA Local 115 Treasurer
Ph: 403-670-9960 Fax: 403-263-2908