The Spotlite is on Kathy Kuhn RPNKathy Kuhn RPN
Pam Ferguson is Kathy Kuhn's colleague in Kelowna, BC, and shared the following about her work partner: "Kathy is a very experienced and knowledgeable psychiatric nurse, who has passion for her work and does her utmost to ensure that clients get the help they need. She is a very organized, hardworking, creative person. Above all, her attitude and skills are what I admire. I have been fortunate to be mentored by Kathy to improve my skills as a group therapist. I am always amazed at how she can use sharpness of mind to provide such gentle and compassionate care."
Kathy says she always had a curiosity about mental health. As a young person, she wondered "what was going on at the building with the green roof" near her home, in the town of North Battleford, Saskatchewan. It turned out it was the provincial mental health hospital. The curiosity grew, and led Kathy to the psychiatric nursing program. She attended the last class of the hospital-based program, and graduated in 1974. At that time, the nursing courses were offered on the job. After class, students hit the wards. Then quite often, they would have to go back to class after working different shifts on the units. The advantage of such training was, upon graduation, participants would have had a lot of clinical time under their belts; they already had a good deal of practical experience to go forward with. More . . .
MARY STEINHAUSER – (1942-1975)
"An example for all Canadians" are the words of Pierre Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada, as he describes Mary's heroic actions while being held hostage for 41 hours in a June 1975 attempted prison break and her service as a nurse, social worker and activist.
"Mary will be remembered with respect and gratitude for her outstanding courage and fortitude in recent days and for her service in a most difficult and demanding vocation. Your daughter has set an example for all Canadians" .... Pierre Elliott Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada, in a June 11,1975 telegram to Mary's parents on the day of Mary's tragic death at the BC Penitentiary, New Westminster BC.
Sometimes referred to as a "BC Hero", this outstandingly brave young woman began her career as a Registered Psychiatric Nurse at Essondale in 1960, graduating in 1962. Following graduation, she continued working as an RPN at Essondale, Woodlands School, and Tranquille School until 1965. Full story
Poster (please post)How Canadians can help.
New Issue of Spotlite available now
See "NEWS" page.
Shining the Lite on Two Generations of Mental Health Service Providers
Donna and John Higenbottam
It would be fair to say that the Higenbottam name is synonymous with mental health services in British Columbia; and across Canada. Six of the family members work in related fields, and have had a significant impact on policy development and resources, both provincially and federally.
We have decided to shine the Spotlite on the whole family; because of the encouragement and role models they provide to anyone that comes in contact with them.
Donna is sitting in the kitchen of their vintage beachfront home that looks out over Boundary Bay, in Tsawwassen. She and her husband, John, have lived there for 18 years. She has a warm smile on her face and is very welcoming-and welcoming of the idea that she could share her story and passion for psychiatric nursing. more ...
Attention HSA RPN's – Don't allow yourself to be intimidated.
What the Labour Code Says
Some of you are apparently being told by HSA reps that dire consequences could await you if you sign a UPN card. Nothing could be further from the truth. This is purely an intimidation tactic by a Union that is becoming more desperate with each passing day. The link below will take you to excerpts form the BC Labour Relations Code. These are actual excerpts, they were not written by UPN and they constitute the current law of the land. Please take the time to read them so you can avoid or indentify these intimidation tactics.
HSA Spreading Falsehoods about UPN – Here are the facts!
It's unfortunate but there are a lot of derogatory comments about the UPN and how ineffective the UPN is, using intimidation, false accusations and scare tactics, etc.
Remember this is not unfamiliar behavior when the real issues are being clouded, not addressed or there are inadequacies to be hidden.
The links below will provide you with the ACTUAL Facts, no falsehoods, no intimidation, no scare tactics. Just the plain, simple, TRUTH.
HSA getting desperate. Resorts to spreading falsehhods in the workplace.
The plain, simple, TRUTH.
Educational opportunities fund returns.
UPN is pleased to announce the return of the Educational Opportunities Fund. Bursaries from this fund are used for the clinical education of nurses and include the upgrading of nursing skills. All active UPN members are eligible to apply for this funding. The current maximum that will be paid out to an individual annually is $4,000.
Thank You HSA RPNs!
Many thanks to the HSA RPNs and representatives who turned out for our debate at Sullivan Hall on September 26, 2013. It was rewarding and gratifying for UPNs' representatives and we certainly hope it was equally gratifying and rewarding for you. We look forward to serving your needs as UPN members.
UPN Welcomes all RPNs
The Union of Psychiatric Nurses of British Columbia would like to extend a warm welcome to our counterparts at HSA and offer you the opportunity to be part of a professional union that supports and unites ONLY Registered Psychiatric Nurses. Uniting RPNs in a strong, profession-focussed union will strengthen our profession's ability to negotiate better contracts and practice conditions while advocating for improved mental health and addictions care in British Columbia.
The UPN is the only Registered Psychiatric Nursing union in Canada. It's a fact that no one can understand and advocate for RPNs better than other RPNs. The Union of Psychiatric Nurses has been doing just that since 1965. Our roots reach back even further, to September 4th, 1947, when the first Psychiatric Nurses' Association in Canada was formed here in British Columbia.
Click HERE to print/read new information pamphlet
HSA Members click HERE.
Any Questions? Forward your questions to joinnow@ telus.net
"Turning the spotlite on our members"
In the coming weeks and months the website and Spotlite Magazine will showcase some of UPN's front-line practitioners by telling their stories and highlighting what a unique group of care professionals RPN's are. This month we are "turning the Spotlite" on Kathy Kuhn RPN. Do you know an RPN with a who deserves to have the Spotlite focussed on them. If you do, send your recommendation along to Yves Chinnapen, Chair, UPN Communications Committee for consideration.
Transfer from the Public Service Takes Place June 1
Forensic Psychiatric Services, Oak Bay Lodge and the Lodge at Broadmead Impacted
On March 28, the B.C. Public Service Agency advised us that they were removing Forensic Psychiatric Services (FPSC), Oak Bay Lodge and the Lodge at Broadmead from the Public Service effective June 1, 2013. FPSC and Oak Bay were to be moved to the Health Sector and the Lodge at Broadmead would become an independent employer. This letter can be found by clicking the link Notice Letter.
This brings about some very significant changes, especially for those members working at FPSC and Oak Bay Lodge, as the move to the Health Sector would entail a transition to a completely different collective agreement. With Broadmead, the employer intends to remain under the 15th Master until it expires on March 31, 2014 and then negotiate separately from then on.
Shortly after receiving this notice we entered into talks with the government and learned that they did not consider this a change in employers and therefore they did not believe that our members had a choice in remaining with their employer or taking their displacement rights as found in Article 13 of the 15th Master. We categorically disagree with the government's position and, after some discussion, filed a General Application Grievance claiming that there was indeed a change in employer and that our members should have all of their Article 13 rights including the right to opt for severance pay.
Since then, John Hall has been appointed as sole arbitrator for this case and we have July 31 and August 1, 2013 set aside for the hearing. As this will take place after the June 1 transition, we have also received undertakings that, if we should win our case, all employees of the effected agencies will be offered their Article 13 rights at that time.
We have also been actively involved in working out a transfer agreement for FPSC and Oak Bay Lodge. We have had several meetings with representatives of the Government, Health Employers Association (HEABC), FPSC and Oak Bay management present. While we have not yet completed talks on the transfer agreement, most of it has been agreed to and there are only a couple of matters remaining to finalize. You can review the tentative agreement by clicking the link transfer agreement.
With the move from the 15th Master to the Provincial Collective Agreement (PCA) you will note that there are quite a few changes to your working conditions. Some are for the better while others are not so good (see comparison document). Through our transfer agreement talks, we have tried to lessen the negative impacts in some of these areas. For example, while you will be losing STIIP, your sick leave banks will be "seeded" with 10 sick days per year of service up to the maximum allowable.
During talks, we also spent quite a bit of time determining how the change from a 35 hour week to a 37.5 hour week would impact your schedules. While you will lose your surplus days because of this, we have come to the conclusion that there is no need to radically alter your rotations. Those on a 4:2 rotation can remain on the same rotation and need only work ten minutes more per shift. Members working a 5:2 shift will see no change. In the community, if you were working a 9-day fortnight, this can still be retained however, you will need to work an extra 33 minutes per shift. You can review the rotation calculations by clicking on one of the links: 4:2, 5:2, or 9-day fortnight.
One major question that we don't have an answer for yet deals with classifications. The classification system in the Health Sector is significantly different to that in the Public Service and, in some instances; the classifications don't align with each other. We have been constantly asking the employer for information on how they see our members being classified but they say they haven't completed their determination yet. All we can do is wait and see at this point. Once they make their determination, we hope that it will be a fair one. If it isn't, then we will have to sit down with those members who are negatively impacted and figure out what kind of a case can be made for disputing the classifications. As I say, until they advise us of what the classifications are, we can only hope that it will be reasonable and fair.
For those members at the Lodge at Broadmead, we hope to be over there soon to discuss any concerns you may have and to discuss strategies for bargaining at the end of the year. We believe you will see little noticeable change after June 1 and so we have focused more on the other two groups who are facing much more change. This doesn't mean that we have forgotten you. You are important to us and we will do our best to support you through this change.
We recognize that this is a major change for many of you who have spent your entire nursing career in the Public Service. Should you have any concerns or questions, please feel free to contact us either by email or by calling the office.