Yesterday, we met for our second round of negotiations. Management wants to change our contract to unilaterally make decisions that are currently being made collaboratively with Caregivers.
They continued to propose tripling the number of required hours for per diems. While Sparrow’s administration did back off on changing the per diem cap, we are worried that tripling the number of required hours could push Caregivers to work elsewhere.
They proposed broadening their ability to discipline Caregivers. While we were able to get management to agree to have Action Plans be measurable and with timelines, management proposed being able to discipline Caregivers if we inadvertently or improperly follow the leave process or make other procedural mistakes. Even though they say this is not their intent, they also proposed language suggesting that if your elected representatives accidentally clock in the wrong department while working on your behalf, they could be subject to discipline.
They proposed allowing management to unilaterally decide which units are open or closed. Currently, this is a decision that is made directly by Caregivers in each unit. Last session management had proposed that they alone would decide which units will have on-call requirements. When these two proposals are added together, it looks like Sparrow’s administration is trying to be less and less collaborative with those of us who work on the frontlines.
The pandemic has shown that Caregivers need to have more of a say – not less.
The good news is that we were able to reach several tentative agreements cleaning up contract language yesterday including in our non-discrimination clause. We also got management to withdraw their proposal on eliminating our contractional professional appearance protections. Nevertheless, yesterday’s session made clear that we will need to stand together against management’s attempts to take unilateral control for themselves if we want to keep our voice strong. We need more input not less after the year we have had.
As a reminder, the Bargaining Advisory Team meeting is tomorrow (August 12) from 5:30pm to 8:30pm at Corey’s (1511 S Cedar St). Drop by anytime!
Your Elected PECSH-MNA Caregiver Bargaining Team