Ontario Machinists Ratify First Agreement with Voyageur

Members of Local 1295 in Sarnia, ON, who are employed as Medical Attendants by Voyageur Patient Transfer Services are all smiles after ratifying their first collective agreement.

“These people joined the Machinists for better representation, wages and respect on the job and I think we delivered that in this first collective agreement,” explained District 78 Organizer Ralph Martin. “A premium for on-call work was a big issue for the members and they’re very pleased with what we got for them.”

The three-year agreement provides for wage increases of 9 percent in the first year, 5.5 percent in the second year and 6 percent in the third year. Other agreement highlights include: $4/hour shift premium for on-call work; bereavement leave language and increased vacation time.

“First agreements can be very tough to accomplish and this was no exception,” said Martin. “Our bargaining team is to be congratulated for its tenacity in not backing down on what were very important issues to the membership.”

The 15 members provide non-emergency ambulatory patient transfers in the Lambton County area. The IAMAW also represents patient transfer workers at Ontario Patient Transfer in Hamilton, Kitchener-Waterloo and Winchester, Ambutrans in Toronto and Medi-Van in Winnipeg.