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Yesterday, the provincial government introduced new essential services legislation that recognizes public-sector workers’ fundamental right to strike. Provinces were compelled to amend outdated labour laws because of decisions at the Supreme Court of Canada and Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench last year to recognize and protect the Charter rights of public-sector workers, including the right to strike.

This legislation, once passed, will cover members working for Alberta Health Services and approved hospitals and those under the Public Service Employee Relations Act (PSERA).

Upon proclamation, this legislation will have a big impact on bargaining for many AUPE members.

It’s important for members to note that Bill 4 has only been tabled and passed first reading. At this time it is not law.

Here’s what Bill 4, once passed into law, will mean for current AUPE units at a bargaining impasse:

ARBITRATION: No impact – arbitration proceedings continue
Alberta Health Services – General Support Services
Alberta Pension Services Corporation
Alberta Treasury Branches

MEDIATION: 120 days upon proclamation to file an Essential Services Agreement
Alberta Health Services – Auxiliary Nursing Care
Good Samaritan Society – Gerald Zetter – Auxiliary Nursing Care
Lamont Health Care Centre – General Support Services
Covenant Health – General Support Services
Capital Care – General Support Services

Here’s what Bill 4, once passed into law, will mean for other AUPE units included under the legislation:

BEGAN BARGAINING, NOT YET AT MEDIATION: upon proclamation, negotiate Essential Services Agreement according to legislated timelines

BARGAINING IS APPROACHING: upon proclamation, negotiate Essential Services Agreement according to legislated timelines

AUPE will continue to analyze Bill 4 and provide updates to AUPE members on how the legislation may or may not impact their bargaining.

Please contact AUPE at 1-800-232-7284 should you have any questions.

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