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Proposed agreement: FIQ members in Estrie hope for good news

Natasha Kumar By Natasha Kumar Mar19,2024

Proposed understanding: the members of the FIQ in Estrie hopes for good news

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Members of the FIQ were on the picket lines at the end of November. (Archive photo)

Radio-Canada

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After long months of negotiation and eight days of strike, Quebec and the Fédération interprofessionnelle de la santé du Québec (FIQ) reached a proposed agreement. The latter must now be submitted to the 80,000 members of the main nurses' union in the province.

Expectations are high among nurses after 16 months of negotiations.

It's about time! said nurse Isabelle Plourde, interviewed by Radio-Canada on Tuesday morning. She adds that her priorities include working conditions, certainly.

It's certain that in terms of salary too, we would like it to be equivalent to what was given to others, she also believes.

The government has often repeated: it wants to offer conditions that it describes as exceptional in exchange for flexibility in collective agreements. On the ground, however, concerns persist among workers.

LoadingOttawa and Quebec reach an agreement in principle on health transfers

ELSEWHERE ON INFO: Ottawa and Quebec reach an agreement in principle on health transfersLoading in progressOttawa and Quebec reach an agreement in principle on health transfers

ELSE ON NEWS: Ottawa and Quebec reach an agreement in principle on health transfers

I just can't wait to see what the deal is, especially in relation to flexibility. […] The government wants to take us a bit, so to speak. As the FIQ said, what I heard this morning, they wanted to take a neonatal nurse, take her to surgery. Currently, this cannot be done. Not in current conditions and not where medicine is going either. Nurses are becoming more and more specialized, noted nurse Isabelle Vachon on Tuesday morning.

The agreement will first be presented to the FIQ union representatives during its federal council, which is being held until Thursday.

It is certain that with results such as 42% of our members who are thinking of leaving when we surveyed them this summer in connection with the overload of work, for me, this issue […] absolutely must be addressed.

A quote from Stéphanie Goulet, interim president of the Union of Care Professionals of the Eastern Townships

To get there, Stéphanie Goulet hopes for good news regarding a key demand from the union: safe ratios of patients to healthcare professionals.

This means that we must stop having work teams that work at a numerical disadvantage all the time, because this has become the norm in the public network, you should know that. To counter the shortage, what employers have done is to reduce work shifts, she says.

If the delegates are satisfied, the agreement will be submitted to the members. The workers hope that the mobilizations will have made it possible to obtain gains.

A strike is never fun. It was bad for us because we had to leave our workplace, which created an extra workload for others. It’s sure that it’s not a good working atmosphere when you have to go on strike. We do it because we want things to change, notes Isabelle Plourde.

Out of respect for the process, Minister Sonia Lebel will not comment on the content of the agreement.

With information from Marie-Hélène Rousseau

Natasha Kumar

By Natasha Kumar

Natasha Kumar has been a reporter on the news desk since 2018. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining The Times Hub, Natasha Kumar worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my natasha@thetimeshub.in 1-800-268-7116

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