Bill 29: The Health Sector Bargaining Unit Review Act
Link to the entire bill here:
Explanatory Note from the Manitoba Government:
This Bill deals with bargaining units and collective bargaining in Manitoba’s health sector.
The Bill establishes a fixed number of bargaining units for each health region and for each province-wide health employer such as CancerCare Manitoba and Diagnostic Services of Manitoba Inc.
A commissioner will be appointed to determine the composition of the bargaining units.
If a bargaining unit consists of employees represented by more than one union, the commissioner will conduct a representation vote of employees for the purpose of selecting a single bargaining agent.
Once a bargaining agent is selected, the Bill provides that the collective agreement governing the most employees in the bargaining unit to which that bargaining agent is a party will become the basis for negotiating a new collective agreement governing all employees in the unit.
The Bill also establishes an employers organization for each health region, for the sole purpose of collective bargaining. It requires the minister to appoint one or more representatives to bargain on behalf of those organizations and on behalf of the province-wide health employers.
The commissioner will have authority to make the decisions necessary to implement the new bargaining framework.
The Manitoba government of Brian Pallister introduced Bill 29: The Health Sector Bargaining Unit Review Act during the 41st Legislature, 2016-17.
In previous comments to the media, Premier Pallister had indicated that it was too much for government to negotiate with so many bargaining units. In response, many unions, including MAHCP, clarified that they often bargain as larger groups. For example, MAHCP’s Central Table sees 17 bargaining units negotiating at one table – not 17 separate tables. This clarification seems to have fallen on deaf ears, as Pallister went full-steam ahead with Bill 29.
Where we are now:
Bill 29 passed first, second and third reading, was given Royal Assent and then proclaimed on May 10, 2018. When the Bill was proclaimed, it officially became named: The Health Sector Bargaining Unit Review Act. It is now law in Manitoba.
The Pallister government appointed a commissioner, Robert Pruden, also in May of 2018 to oversee Bill 29’s expected 18-month implementation process.
MAHCP has been included in meetings with government officials and other unions that have members in health care to discuss the details of Bill 29.
However, many questions remain that MAHCP President Bob Moroz and Executive Director Lee Manning continue to seek responses to. Dates for the expected representation votes have not yet been decided, but should take place before the end of Commissioner Pruden’s 18-month implementation process. In essence, that means anytime in 2019.
Communications from MAHCP, including newsletter:
December 1, 2018 Complications related to Bill 29 abound
October 19, 2018 MAHCP President responds to Commissioner’s Update to all unionized workers.
September 2018 Bill 29 likely to increase need for MAHCP member participation
June 2018 Solidarity is silver lining during trying times in health care
June 2017 MAHCP fighting for health care
March 16, 2017 MAHCP President’s statement on Provincial Legislation affecting labour