Phase #1 of Renew PEI, Together: A Phased Approach begins today. I would like to express my sincere gratitude to each and every one of you for the care you have provided to Islanders during these unprecedented times. I’m very proud of the work of PEINU members, not only in preparing for potential COVID-19 patients, but also for their part in flattening the curve on PEI
I continue to hear, on a daily basis, how collaborative and accommodating you have been when asked to take on new roles, duties and responsibilities. I recognize this was not easy but again nurses went above and beyond to ensure Islanders were protected and cared for. Together RNs and NPs are an incredible force!
Since my last letter, PEINU has continued to advocate for your safety. We hope to reach an agreement with government today regarding a Joint Statement on PPE. This would ensure your right to use your professional and clinical judgement to determine the appropriate PPE. See the letter on our website under the COVID tab.
PEINU is in regular contact with Health PEI to ensure the collective agreement is followed in its entirety. For instance, we have been hearing from members that summer vacations are in jeopardy. Yesterday, in our weekly teleconference with all unions and the employer, we were reassured that the employer is proceeding with the regular process of vacation as outlined in Article 22.4.
Also discussed was the allocation of procedure masks for those in long term care who are required to wear masks during their shift. The union does not support the “bundling of breaks” unless mutually agreed to by the employee as per Article 20.2 (e).
As of yesterday, the Letter of Agreement between the four Public Sector Unions and the employer has been extended for 2 weeks, now expiring on May 14, 2020. The Letter of Agreement can be found on our COVID webpage.
Please continue to reach out to your local president or your provincial union with any questions or concerns you might have.
Also, please take time during National Nurses Week to celebrate (at a distance) your contribution to the health and well-being of those in your care.
Most importantly, lean on each other and our union, because together we will conquer COVID-19!