Negotiations continued last week (March 2 and 3), but little progress was made. It’s clear the Good Samaritan Society is not interested in bettering residents’ living situation but only in retaining unchecked power over staff.
Even where the employer could benefit from our proposals, they pushed back. For example, your bargaining team tabled discipline and job performance provisions that would be fair to staff and save both parties time and resources by putting mutually understood processes and responsibilities in place.
The employer dismissed these proposals, claiming them unnecessary because their own discipline policy already covers the language.
Then they contradicted themselves, tabling counterproposals that fall well below the Human Resource industry standards, and promising - as consolation - to introduce the aforementioned discipline policy, which they had previously said was already in place.
These actions demonstrate exactly why we need to secure a strong collective agreement. Unlike employer policies, a collective agreement is legally binding. The Good Samaritan Society will have to follow it or be held accountable; they can’t manipulate it at whim or arbitrarily choose when and how it’s applied.
This is why they’re trying to keep strong and clear language off of the bargaining table and pushing for rollbacks to the current agreement.
They’re also holding back on signing off articles that haven’t been signed off at the Long-Term Care table. Combined with the wage disparity that exists between us and other Good Samaritan staff, this is just one more way the organization tries to divide employees and treat us like we are inferior.
Their lack of respect for us reflects their lack of respect for the vulnerable Albertans we see daily, whose supports are being knocked down left, right and centre by broader UCP cuts to Programs for Persons with Developmental Disabilities (PPDD).
Your bargaining team is considering what next steps we can take to get the working conditions we deserve and the homes that residents need. If you have any ideas or questions, please reach out.
GOOD SAMARITAN SOCIETY GROUP HOMES BARGAINING TEAM