Agreement Achieved at Pharma Plus Drugstores
Members employed at Pharma Plus Drug Marts voted to ratify a new collective agreement on April 3, 2011. It was a challenging set of negotiations mainly due to recent government changes on pharmaceutical rebates affecting business in all drugstores in Ontario. Shoppers Drug Mart reacted with cutting hours and laying off employees. Pharma Plus fought the legislative change but was unsuccessful in stopping it. The members realized the huge impact this would have on negotiations and supported their negotiating committee in their efforts.
The resulting collective agreement is fair to both sides and gives Pharma Plus an opportunity to grow their business in this new drug store environment. The company tabled many concessions and wanted to do a major layoff. The committee fought the concessions and brought back the best possible agreement under the circumstances.
The new agreement provides for the following:
- Pension issues all resolved maintaining the $40.00 benefit level per member
- The LawNET program was introduced providing savings when using lawyers for all matters outside of work
- Dental contributions were increased to maintain coverage for both full-time and part-time members
- Grievance and arbitration language has been modernized
- Wage and seniority protection for members who transfer between Pharma Plus and Pharmx Rexall
- bargaining units
- Increased restrictions on the use of part-time employees which will protect and create full-time jobs
- New Registered Pharmacy Technician rates of pay
- $0.25 across the board increase in the 2nd and 3rd year of contract
- The store guarantee was renewed
Negotiating committee members are: Negotiating committee members are: Kimberly Macduff, Janet McMillan, Barbara Richter, Jason Russell, Sue Schouten, Brenda Stokes, South Central Director Sylvia Groom, Executive Assistant Harry Sutton, and President Shawn Haggerty.