More than 1,700 unionized PeaceHealth workers in Oregon and Washington reached a tentative agreement with management on Nov. 30 that includes raising pay for some workers by more than 50%.
The tentative agreement follows lengthy negotiations with the Oregon Federation of Nurses and Health Professionals that was punctuated by a five-day strike in October.
Affected workers include lab professionals at PeaceHealth St. John in Longview as well as the technical and service and maintenance workers at PeaceHealth Southwest in Vancouver. In Oregon, technical workers at PeaceHealth Sacred Heart are affected.
"This agreement secures the largest raises for these workers in history," union President Jonathon Baker said in a statement.
PeaceHealth, through a spokesperson, credited its negotiating teams, adding “Together with the union, we worked hard to reach three separate agreements that our caregivers can be proud of and support, and we look forward to the outcome of the vote."
Baker said the agreement will ensure that no union worker at Southwest or St. John receives less than a 20% raise over the life of the contract. Some units will receive as much as a 55% pay raise over the contract's life; most workers will receive at least a 28% raise.
Workers at Sacred Heart will see comparable raises, he said: as much as 37% for some workers over a three-year contract rather than the four-year agreements reached at Southwest and St. John (with most workers getting 20% raises).
Other benefits in the tentative agreement include longevity and ratification bonuses, increases to differential pay, disciplinary protections and a staffing committee to work on the issue of systemic short staffing.
Baker said the agreement also nullifies all unfair labor practice complaints filed by the union and management.
Workers in each unit of the labor must still vote to ratify the agreement. Voting began as soon as the agreement was announced among the 1,000 workers of the service and maintenance unit. The rest of the units vote at various times over the next two weeks. Baker said results will be sent out once they are available.