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Health care unions defend bargaining association model

HALIFAX, Oct. 1, 2014 /CNW/ - Leaders of three of the health care unions in Nova Scotia - CUPE, NSNU and Unifor - have reaffirmed their support of a bargaining association model that the unions proposed to the provincial government in response to health district restructuring.

"We will re-state this loud and clear - we are confident that the bargaining association model is still the best option for health care workers in this province," said Lana Payne, Unifor Atlantic regional director. "This remains the only option that avoids chaos and disruption in the health care system and the only option that doesn't pit worker against worker and union against union."

The leaders and their members have been in front of the legislature since Monday to support the proposal and to urge the Liberal government to clarify their plans, as public comments from Health Minister Leo Glavine have been unclear.

"Among the unions, there was never any consideration that there would be carve-outs of existing bargaining units or runoff votes," said Danny Cavanagh, president of CUPE Nova Scotia. "The unions' Bargaining Association is the only true reflection of democracy, and the only way all of our members can have their rights protected."

"Our members just want to go to work and do their best to take care of people," said Janet Hazelton, president of the Nova Scotia Nurses' Union. "We worked together as unions all summer to come up with a solution that would avoid chaos and upheaval in our health care system. That's what all four unions pledged to do."

SOURCE Unifor