Food service and housekeeping staff at three B.C. hospitals have returned to direct employment with Fraser Health, as the New Democrat government’s plan to end contracting out unpaid services medical is in progress.
The first phase involves 362 employees from Eagle Ridge, Royal Columbian and Burnaby hospitals, as a contract with the American company Aramark Corporation has come to an end. Premier John Horgan and Health Minister Adrian Dix announced in August 2021 that 21 food and housekeeping contracts with hospitals in British Columbia were expiring, mostly in March this year, and 4,000 employees across the province would return directly to health authority employment.
Island Health began the process in 2020 when contracts expired for 150 workers at Comox Valley Hospital and North Island Campus Campbell River and District.
The change ends “decades of injustice” for people who worked during the COVID-19 pandemic, as the province strives to recruit more people to work in the health care system, said Ten when announcing the change last summer.
Direct employment provides wage increases and pension plans for support staff contracted by the previous BC Liberal government in 2003. The return to direct employment is to continue over the next two years, for contract employees of Aramark, Sodexo, SerVantage and Compass at Fraser Health, Vancouver Coastal Health and the Provincial Health Services Authority.
Legislative Assembly of British Columbia Politics of British Columbia