News Release Archive

  Human Resources Minister Jay Abbass held a brief news
  conference today to address labour relations issues
  regarding the QEII Health Sciences Centre legislation
  currently before the House.
  The bill allows for the merger of the Victoria General
  Hospital, the Camp Hill Medical Centre, the Nova Scotia
  Rehabilitation Centre Corporation and the Cancer Treatment
  and Research Foundation of Nova Scotia.
  "The bill respects and preserves collective agreements.
  Indeed government did not modify exiting agreements. All
  employees come to the new employer with the contracts they
  have now," the minister said.
  In addition, the minister pointed out, the legislation
  recognizes the sanctity of the Trade Union Act and the
  provisions of the act to govern a merger or amalgamation.
  "I wouldn't want people to make decisions based on a
  misreading of the bill," he said.
  He noted that the act specifically states that VG employees
  will continue to receive the same or equal coverage; that
  workers in the civil service pension plan remain in the
  plan, or can join a new plan created by the new employer if
  they so choose; that worker's pay equity gains are protected
  because they are recognized in their collective agreements;
  the legislation does recognize the Nova Scotia Government
  Employees Union, and all other bargaining agents, which have
  negotiated collective agreements on behalf of their
  membership through the Trade Union Act provisions; that
  employee's seniority is recognized.
  The minister said that it is still early in the legislative
  process for the bill, and that legitimate concerns regarding
  the bill can be addressed at the law amendments committee
  "The law and our legislative structures provide all with
  this opportunity. The law does not permit the NSGEU to take
  strike action -- such action is uncalled for, unwarranted
  and illegal."
  The minister noted as well that the government cannot give
  one union a privileged position over another and that the
  bill treats all employees and unions fairly.
  Contact: Norma MacIsaac  902-424-5427
  trp                     Nov. 29, 1995