Monday, April 22, 2013

It's no vacation

It was 2:30 in the morning when we finished up.
Most of us had been up since 5 am and worked all day.
It's a 42 page contract with 61 articles, all from scratch.
So yes, there are some mistakes.
One of those was the language on vacations. The contract says we submit for vacations 4 weeks before the schedule.
What we agreed to was a MINIMUM of 4 weeks.
When this happens, you rely on the negotiation notes to clarify. I want to thank Carol Cote, who took notes for us, because if not for those notes, we would be in a pickle.
You'll remember that last fall we reached an agreement that full week vacations would be submitted up to 6 months in advance. We could not agree on partial week vacations.
Then this year, it was said that summer vacations needed to be submitted in January or it would be too late.
We filed 2 grievances and the first one had an arbitration date of May 29.
I am pleased to announce that we have an agreement that I believe covers most of our concerns.
Vacation can be submitted until 4 weeks before the schedule.
Non prime time vacations will have a one month period for full week requests and then be open for full or partial weeks. They will not depend on seniority, the will be first submit/first granted.
Prime time will have a one month submittal period, in which preference will be given to full weeks and seniority, and after that it will be first submit/ first granted.
Also, "full week" will be defined as 24 hours, so, if you need Thursday through the next week (10 days), you could conceivably get it without burning up 64 or 80 hours of vacation time.
Naturally, all requests are dependent on patient care needs.
It's complicated, and you'll have questions. Please talk to your delegates and officers.