On May 2, 2021, François Legault said again at a press conference that he is “generously” offering beneficiary attendants the famous $26 per hour. He added a new false claim: that the increase amounts to a 23% raise. How did he come up with 23%? We don’t know. It’s pointless trying to do the math since it’s based on the $26 per hour figure, which is false to begin with.
$25.14 and not until 2022
In fact, the Legault government is offering beneficiary attendants (PABs) and health and social services aides (ASSSs) $25.14 per hour, and only in the last year of the collective agreement, which begins on April 1, 2022. That’s a 12.5% increase for PABs and ASSSs, counting the upgrading of their job titles from rank 7 to rank 9 and the salary increase the government is offering for the entire public sector, which comes to about 5% over three years.
Legault government wants to flout pay equity rights
And in exchange the CAQ government wants us to drop our pay equity complaints! Although Sonia Lebel has stated publicly that equity is not negotiable, the government has made its offer conditional on disposing of all the pay equity complaints for all class 2 employees (para-technical, auxiliary services and trades personnel). Yet the move up the salary scale is long overdue. The ASSS complaints date back to the 2010 pay equity audit and the PAB complaints to 2015. Among other things, the government’s demand would deprive PABs and ASSSs of the full retroactive amounts to which they are entitled. This is unacceptable. The government can’t make up the difference by taking the money out of the pockets of working women.
Premiums only for PABs in CHSLDs
The government is offering additional premiums but only for PABs working in CHSLDs, and with conditions attached. Furthermore, the premiums don’t count as part of salary and don’t count towards pensions. Finally, the government’s offer to PABs is contingent on us accepting all the downgrades to working conditions that it is demanding, particularly with regard to overtime.
No response to our suggestions
Meanwhile, the government’s offer so far doesn’t meet any of our objectives. More than a year after our collective agreements expired, we’re still waiting for answers to our proposals – even the ones that wouldn’t cost anything and would actually save money.
On occupational health and safety, excessive workloads, work-life-study balance, measures to attract and retain staff, the government is simply refusing to negotiate.
Instead of coming to the bargaining table to find solutions that will help us pull the health and social services system out of the crisis, the government prefers to float trial balloons in the media. They are openly dismissive of us because they think workers will turn against each other and most of our members will be happy with what the government is offering. They’re wrong. That is not what we’re hearing from the general meetings on strike action. On the contrary: workers want to stand up for themselves.
Download this bulletin in pdf : https://fsss.qc.ca/download/nego_public/.nego_2020/en-infonegomai2021.pdf