LPNs in former CDHA receive pay increase after six-year fight

Nova Scotia Government and General Employees Union (NSGEU)

Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) with the Nova Scotia Government and General Employees Union (NSGEU) who worked at the former Capital District Health Authority (CDHA) have won a twelve per cent pay increase after a six-year fight.

The consent award was issued by arbitrator Lorraine Lafferty, effective Monday, and concludes a long-standing classification review.

The increase is retroactive to any hours worked back to March 17th, 2014.

A release from the NSGEU says the award, which is pensionable, also applies to former CDHA LPN who have resigned, retired, or taken a position with another health authority or employer.

Affected LPNs enrolled in CDHA pension plans since 2014 will see improvements in their pensions now or at the time of their retirement.

Union president Jason MacLean says, "In the end, this is a very important victory for Licensed Practical Nurses and begins to show respect for the expanded roles they play in our health care system."

The union formally initiated the reclassification process on behalf of all LPNs who worked in the former CDHA in 2014, with arbitrator Bruce Outhouse determining last fall that their role had been substantially altered.

That led to another arbitration process for two days last week to determine the corresponding pay increase.

The NSGEU says it will now advocate that the provincial government immediately extend the twelve per cent wage increase to LPNs across the province, saying that wage parity has been a consistent practice in health care in Nova Scotia for more than 25 years.