The 3rd annual Alberta Union of Provincial Employees (AUPE) Pancake Breakfast and BBQ in celebration of unionization in Stettler happened on Wed. July 17.
Stettler has three separate AUPE chapters that became unionized three years ago so the breakfast and BBQ attracted staff as the time worked around tight schedules and acted as a way to give an update to union workers.
“It was to try and get people to ask questions, give them updates,” said Stettler Chapter Chair Denise Johnston.
People from the hospital, auxiliary nursing, and general support services (GSS) are ‘all in the same boat’ when it comes to dynamic work situations. Behind the scenes, the union is working to get fair wages for the amount of time and effort put into their profession.
Poor working conditions have led to stressed, overworked employees and worsening patient care according to Johnston. In response to this, they applied for enhanced meditation to begin first contract arbitration.
This will get the union one step closer to a collective agreement that benefits both parties fairly. The union wishes to see fair and competitive wages for staff as a strike is not an option.
The Stettler Chapter and Slave Lake Chapter have joined forces to share the same enhanced mediation dates which have been set for September 10, 11,18,19, and 20.
The saying ‘You have to put money in to get money out’ was one of the main areas she feels the company can work towards. Residents will be more inclined to live in their assisted living buildings if there are better living and working conditions available.
“No short staffing, better laundry detergent, better machines – all of those things are actually going to cost them money but if you had the best services that you could possibly want or need, the demand for people to be in your building is going to be that much greater,” said Johnston.