Bargaining Update – Yukon Government Employees

The Union Pre‐Bargaining Team met for the second time with the employer’s team from February 25 to February 28 in Whitehorse.

At the January bargaining session, the employer proposed significant changes to shift patterns and hours of work for a select group of Extended Care Workers, all Residential Care Workers and many Natural Resource Workers.

The Pre‐Bargaining Team was very concerned about the impact of these proposals on our members, and held a series of membership information sessions in Whitehorse during the week of February 11. All members who could be affected by these proposed changes were invited. These meetings were extremely well attended. After discussions on hours of work and working conditions, members were polled in confidence by worksite in order to have their say regarding their shift work preferences.

The vast majority of those in attendance at the meetings – 94% opposed these changes. In fact, many signed petitions and many others took the time to write personal testimonials on the impact that the change in hours of work would have on their professional and personal lives. All were quite clear about their feelings. They love the work that they do, but feel there is a need to protect the current hours to maintain their work‐lifestyle balance.

This message was carried back to the bargaining table and conveyed to the Employer’s team.

We can report that while some progress has been made in resolving operational issues, much work remains to be done.

Next Steps

Unfortunately, the Yukon Government will be taking most of the hours of work proposals to the Main Table, along with some of the unresolved Union proposals.

This means that the Main Table team will be bargaining all unresolved hours of work proposals along with the monetary items established at the bargaining conference last fall. The Main Table Team will be reviewing and preparing all outstanding proposals and confirming monetary priorities during the week of March 4 in advance of negotiations with slated for March 12‐15.

Stay tuned—we will keep you informed as bargaining progresses.