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BELLE RIVER -- More than 60 workers at a retirement home in Belle River are receiving a hefty raise as part of a new contract.

The members of Unifor Local 2458 are employees at La Chaumiere Retirement Residence and they ratified a new three-year collective agreement.

It includes improvements in health benefits, access to mental health supports and wage increases of eight per cent and 12 per cent over the term of the contract.

"This contract gives health care workers at La Chaumiere the highest wage increases we have seen in a long while, making jobs at this retirement residence good jobs that workers can rely on,” said Shelley Smith, Unifor Local 2458 second vice president. "Employers across the province need to take notice that attracting and retaining health care workers starts by ensuring workers are fairly compensated."

The new contract was ratified by 100 per cent of employees and replaces the previous one which had expired on January 2019.

It covers more than 60 Registered Practical Nurses, Registered Nurses and Personal Support Workers at La Chaumiere Retirement Residence.

Unifor says the new agreement also includes improvements to work schedule language, paid education leave and increased shift premiums.