Potential CUPE 1252 Strike Reminder

To keep our members, including our new LPN members, informed of their rights and obligations during a strike by another union, should one occur, we want to remind you of the basic rules to follow in the event CUPE workers do go on strike.

1. You must report to work as scheduled.

2. If there is a picket line that prevents you from reporting to work due to fear or harm, you should leave the area immediately and contact your supervisor for instructions. You should remain ready and available for your scheduled shift.

3. You must only perform your regular and usual RN/NP/LPN functions and duties. You cannot and should not be asked to perform work of any kind normally performed by a CUPE member.

4. If you are pressured by your employer to do CUPE work, ask the employer to put their request in writing and send a copy to us. We will pursue the matter from there. However, the “obey now, grieve later” rule should be adhered to.

Remember, the employer will be trying to limit the impact of a legal strike by having other employees perform CUPE work. The more CUPE bargaining work that gets done, the potential for the strike to last longer. This is in no one’s best interest.

We completely understand the care, concern, and empathy you have for the patients and clients that you care for, and in some cases these folks are like family to many of you.

However, we are asking that legal strike action by another union be respected. This is part of the free collective bargaining process and supporting our brothers and sisters of CUPE is an important show of solidarity within the labour movement in NB. The employer cannot win this strike on the backs of NBNU members, by trying to divide and conquer unions that work side by side every day. We are free to support their picket lines and peaceful demonstrations; however, respecting CUPE’s decision to strike cannot involve illegal job action on the part of any NBNU members (see ss. 104-106 of the Public Service Labour Relations Act).

As more information becomes available, we will be sharing it with all NBNU members. If you have questions, please contact us or your LRO.

We appreciate your patience and understanding with us as we try to get this very important information out in a timely manner to all members.

In Solidarity,

Paula Doucet, RN
NBNU President