July 21st, 2018

Union deals better at provincial level

By Collin Gallant on October 17, 2017.

Medicine Hat News

This year the City of Medicine Hat secured a one-year wage freeze from its four major unions, but the cold isn’t catching across the province.

A look at recent settlements shows most public service contracts signed at the municipal level include higher raises than were given locally.

Medicine Hat council approved three multi-year deals that include raises in years out with CUPE 46, the city’s largest with about 800 members, about 80 unionized firefighting staff, as well as about 80 IBEW members at the powerplant and line units.

Only the Medicine Hat Police Association remains without a current contract.

The provincial outlook

Elsewhere, the largest municipal contract of the summer came in August.

The City of Red Deer and its 210 firefighters came to terms on a 30-month deal that sees annual increases of 2.5, 2.2 and 1.2 per cent, respectively.

In May that city struck a two-year deal with electricians totalling 3.75 per cent — compared to 7 per cent over four years for local IBEW members.

The town of Hinton came to terms with 116 employees represented by Unifor for a three-year deal providing raises of 1, 2, and 3 per cent.

Lethbridge and the Associated Transit Union agreed to a multi-year deal for 35 para-transit operators with increases of 2.5 and 3.5 per cent annually.

Local transit drivers, as well as all city employees represented by CUPE 46 settled for 4 per cent over three years in the spring.

Local firefighters will see a combined 7.1 per cent raise over four years.

The City of Lacombe agreed to a 2 per cent increase with its 15-member police association in a one-year deal that expires at the end of 2017.

Hat power employees accepted 7 per cent over 4 years as well.

Each contract sees a zero for 2016, which was a key demand of city negotiators.

Moduline deal

A deal between 89 members of the Moduline Medicine Hat Employees Association and the local structure-building company will see labour peace for three years. The deal, with took effect in June, sees raises of 1.35 per cent this year then 1.66 per cent and 2 per cent before mid-2020.

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