The Heart of Healthcare | May 2015 Issue 13

ISSUE 13

Unions defend the rights of workers which are spelled out in their collective agreements. When their rights are violated, a union member can talk to their manager and explain why this contradicts their contract. But what can a new union member do if they don’t have a contract? The answer: a lot more than you might think. In February 2015, the workers at Revera Home Health Windsor voted overwhelmingly to join SEIU Healthcare. Although they are developing plans to negotiate their first contract, this in-between state hasn’t stopped them from demanding their rights in the workplace before bargaining has even begun. “One of the key reasons we joined SEIU was scheduling. A full-time worker who is supposed to work 35 hours a week may not receive that many hours. They may get 30 hours one week, 20 hours the next. Scheduling isn’t consistent,” said Sheena Tremino, a PSW at Revera Windsor. One of the employees at the worksite hadn’t received any hours for more than four straight weeks. Another new SEIU member from Revera brought this issue to management’s attention on her sister’s behalf and the employer not only re- instated the member’s hours, but also sent a written apology. PURPLE AGENTS OF CHANGE

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