There is a back story to this that seems to be missing from the OP. This is an inter union dispute over who will represent nurses who have voted to leave HEU and switch to BCNU as their bargaining representative. Such things are frowned upon by the BC NDP.
These nurses voted to come over to the BCNU per the BC Labour Code that allows groups to change their bargaining association and the NDP is scandalized by this action. Also the BCNU has been condemned by both the B.C. Federation of Labour and the Canadian Labour Congress accusing the BCNU of "raiding" the HEU.
This was NOT imposed by the BC Liberals.
Bill 18 is being passed to expand the definition of nurse to include LPN's under the Health Authority Act to give effect to the democratic will of these nurses who voted to leave HEU and join the BC Nurses Union.
One of the main reasons for the change voted on by the LPNS is that unlike other members of HEU, LPNs operate under a professional college regulating their practise as with Registered Nurses and Registered Psychiatric Nurses
Also the HEU is an integral part of Dix's power base in the public sector union movement sp you can expect the BC NDP will do all inits power to stay on board with its power base.
Here is the Bill in its entirety:
BILL 18 — 2013
HEALTH AUTHORITIES AMENDMENT ACT, 2013
HER MAJESTY, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of the Province of British Columbia, enacts as follows:
1 Section 19.1 of the Health Authorities Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 180, is amended in the definition of "nurse" by striking out "an enactment" and substituting "the Health Professions Act" and by striking out "or as a registered psychiatric nurse" and substituting ", licensed practical nurse or registered psychiatric nurse".
2 This Act comes into force by regulation of the Lieutenant Governor in Council.
Vaughn Palmer sets out the background and what is going on that has resulted in this minor amendment to the language in the Health Authorities Act.
When the invitation arrived at the Opposition offices for Adrian Dix to attend this year’s convention of the B.C. Nurses’ Union, it presented the New Democratic Party leader with a bit of a dilemma.
The would-be premier has taken most opportunities to talk to business groups over the past two years and with major trade union gatherings, he’s either gone himself or sent a high-profile representative.
The nurses have often been on the same side of health care concerns as the New Democrats. For instance, recently both blasted the B.C. Liberals for neglecting to fund a promised 2,000 additional nursing positions in their three-year budget and fiscal plan.
But all that was secondary to one overreaching concern for the New Democrats, namely that the BCNU was an outcast in the provincial labour movement.
The union had successfully persuaded nurses in the rival Hospital Employees’ Union to switch their membership in a vote conducted under the provisions of the labour code. Now it was trying to recruit nurse-members of other public sector unions as well.
Though legal and democratic, within the church of labour, where picket lines are sacrosanct and solidarity forever is a hymn, raiding is regarded as original sin, making the nurses the closest thing to heretics.
Dix was not willing to address a union that had been condemned by both the B.C. Federation of Labour and the Canadian Labour Congress. Nor were the New Democrats prepared to send another MLA to speak in place of the leader.
So when some 400 delegates representing 40,000 nurses (including the 7,200 licensed practical nurses who voted to come over from the HEU) gathered in Vancouver last week, the Opposition was a no-show in any official capacity.
Health Minister Margaret MacDiarmid did attend and was rewarded with multiple ovations. Among other things, the delegates hailed her government’s tabling of a piece of legislation that would further the process of consolidating nurses into one big union, albeit without any prior consultation with the other affected unions.
But Dix decided not to attend the nurses’ convention well before the Liberals made that hasty legislative move, and he did so strictly because of BCNU poaching on the membership of unions.
“The raid is ongoing, and we were concerned about that,” he told me Monday when I asked about his decision to boycott the BCNU convention. Why concerned? “Well, there is a concern about the disruptions that it brings.”
He assured me that if the New Democrats win the election, they would seek to establish a businesslike relationship with the nurses’ union, which is not to say that he’d ever be on speaking terms with the delegates at their convention.
Nor could Dix claim that he was simply trying to remain neutral in the nurses’ recruitment drive.
For he did accept an invitation to address the HEU convention in Vancouver late last year and there, to a couple of standing ovations, called on members to support the NDP and help “bring the change we need in B.C.”
In return, Dix embraced the union’s opposition to contracting out of jobs in health care facilities, which has resulted in the layoff of union members and their replacement by contract employees.
Citing the pending layoffs at a residential care facility in Burnaby, Dix said: “Some of those employees have been there 30 years and more ... I don’t know about you, but I don’t think we should let that stand.”
He vowed to restore hospital employees’ successorship rights, legislated out of existence by the Liberals during their first year in office.
Dix is closely tied to the HEU. Judy Darcy, the union’s formidable president, backed his leadership bid, then stepped down to become a candidate in New Westminster, one of the safest seats for New Democrats. If Dix forms government, she’ll likely be on the short list for a cabinet position.http://www.vancouver...l#ixzz2NI8huJ47
I am unsure how this got spun as something the BC Liberals have done other than to give effect to a legal and democratic vote of the LPNs who voted to leave the HEU and join the BCNU.
This legislation was introduced at the request of the nurses and Health Minister Margaret MacDiarmid said nurses have asked for legislation that would reclassify licensed practical nurses so all nurses are in one association for bargaining purposes. Licensed practical nurses are currently part of a bargaining association with other hospital support staff including care aides, whose standards are not upheld by a college under the Health Professions Act. "I understand why they want it," MacDiarmid said of a change in legislation.
It seems there has been consultation - with the nurses who are actually affected and who voted to leave HEU for the BC Nurses Union under the provisions of the BC Labour Code allowing for such actions.