New Alliance for Negotiations in the Public Sector

The FIQ and the APTS laid the groundwork for their alliance on Tuesday to negotiate the public sector. They want to improve the working conditions of their members in the health and social services network.
For the first time, the Interprofessional Federation of Health (FIQ), which has 76,000 nurses, licensed practical nurses and other healthcare professionals, and the Alliance of Professional and Technical Personnel in Health and Social Services (APTS), which 55,000 social workers, laboratory technicians, youth center educators and others will negotiate together to renew their collective agreements.

On Tuesday, the two union organizations, 90 percent women, gathered at the Palais des congrès in Montreal, first in separate rooms and then together to seal their alliance.

“It’s an important day. This is the first official meeting, “said Nancy Bédard, president of the FIQ, in an interview.

The FIQ-APTS alliance, which represents 131,000 members in health and social services, will eventually file with the Quebec government common demands on wages, pension plans, parental rights and regional disparities, said in a statement. interview Carolle Dubé, president of the APTS.

“We have issues that are common to our job titles, which will taint this negotiation more broadly, such as labor shortage problems,” Ms. Dubé noted. The problems of work overload and psychological distress add to the problems of recruitment and retention of the workforce.

Mrs. Bédard, of the FIQ, adds: “We are living the same problems. We have paid the costs, at the same level, of the reforms, the budget cuts, the administrative decisions that have been made in the health network, in the last years “.

What links the APTS and the FIQ is “the desire to want to improve the working conditions of the people who work at the heart of the health network in Quebec,” Bédard summarized.

Collective agreements for some 450,000 government employees will expire next March. Normally, the demands of the trade unions are tabled at the end of October.

It is still unclear whether the CSQ-CSN-FTQ inter-union common front will be able to reform this time.

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