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Hospital Bargaining Units : NS Labour and Advanced Education, Labour Relations Board




The Labour Relations Board (Nova Scotia) wishes to announce guidelines in the determination of appropriate units for applications for certification in hospitals. The guidelines, set out below, are for the convenience of all parties concerned in applications for certification. They in no way affect existing bargaining units except, possibly, on an application to amend a Board Certification Order.

The Board will continue to exercise its discretion in considering appropriateness of the bargaining unit in every individual application by a union for certification as bargaining agent on behalf of hospital employees. However, if a union applies for a bargaining unit that departs from the guidelines, it will be called upon to satisfy the Board that, under the circumstances, the unit requested is appropriate. In a small hospital or nursing home, for instance, the Board might conclude that a broader unit, or even an all-employee unit, is appropriate.

Employees excluded by Section 1 (2) of the Trade Union Act of Nova Scotia will, of course, not be included in any unit.

In the absence of grounds which lead the Board to conclude otherwise, the following hospital bargaining units will be considered appropriate:

  1. Nurses - all registered or graduate nurses and specialized nurses, such as psychiatric nurses, working in their speciality.
  2. Health Care Employees - all employees directly concerned with the treatment of patients.
    Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, specifically included are certified nursing assistants, nursing assistants, nurses’ aides, orderlies, technicians, dieticians, pharmacy clerks, medical records staff, and therapists.
  3. Office Employees - all employees performing duties of a primarily clerical, bookkeeping or secretarial nature.
    Where employees are performing clerical, bookkeeping or secretarial duties in particular departments of the hospital under circumstances which demonstrate a community of interest with other employees in those departments, the Board may find them to be appropriately included in a unit other than a unit of office employees.
  4. Residual - all other employees working in or out of the hospital. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, specifically included are the kitchen, housekeeping and dietary staff.

    P.F. Langlois                
    Chief Executive Officer

    Halifax, Nova Scotia
    October 29, 1973

NOTE: The Labour Relations Board (Nova Scotia) by LRB 4453 Interim II, dated November 14, 1997, changed the name of the Residual Bargaining Unit to "Service Support"