Is Local 328 Switching To A PTO System?

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No. Not unless we agree to, and we haven’t done that.

[Edit] You can download a copy of the PTO proposal here.

Local 328 continues to get questions about PTO in response to OHSU’s recent communication on the subject. While many took the wording in OHSU’s blog post to mean that OHSU is moving forward with PTO even though the nurses did not agree to change to a PTO system in their contract negotiations, what OHSU was communicating is that PTO continues to be a priority for them and that they will go ahead with it for unclassified employees and they will continue to propose it to represented employees.

Local 328 has NOT agreed to a PTO proposal. OHSU cannot simply impose PTO on our bargaining unit without our agreement. OHSU knows this and they have never indicated any attempt to do anything but follow the contract.

We DO have contract language which says we will meet and form a task force with OHSU. A task force is a place where we can discuss PTO, look at possibilities for changes and make recommendations. A task force is not collective bargaining and we are not required to come to a resolution by participating in a task force.

Our contract does NOT obligate us to formally bargain over PTO prior to negotiations in 2019. However, when bargaining begins OHSU may decide to put a PTO proposal on the table.

We are committed to full disclosure and membership involvement and no changes will be made without that discussion and involvement.

At this time only one meeting has been held and that was between OHSU and AFSCME staff for the purpose of allowing OHSU to explain what was being provided to unclassified employees. As of this time OHSU has not contacted to our union to formally propose that the task force be formed and begin meeting. We will let you know if they do.

We will to continue to post updates on our FaceBook page on our blog so that members may comment and share ideas and concerns.

21 thoughts on “Is Local 328 Switching To A PTO System?”

    1. Any particular reason why? A discussion of pros and cons might be helpful to others who are still trying to decide.

  1. I know there are a lot of factors to make this a fair thing, but personally, I would like to transition to a PTO. The current system is frustrating. If I want to use Vacation time for a Doctor appointment, because I have more Vacation time accumulated, I would prefer to use that, instead of using my sick time for all my appointments, or appointments for my kids. But with PTO, I would be able to use what I need, and what I have. I wouldn’t have to worry about getting sick, because I don’t have enough hours accumulated. I understand with PTO, there are drawbacks as well. Hours aren’t accumulated as quickly. I think working towards something that gives the flexibility of a PTO, but still able to accumulate hours with the current program would be ideal.

    1. Being neutral here in terms of what members should decide, but in the interest of facts, in the system rolled out for the unclassified folks, total time accrues at the same rate as the current system.

  2. I believe that PTO is pretty standard in the job industry now a days and I think if nothing or very little time hours are taken away from employees this would be a great step moving forward. Rolling the sick and vacation hours together is preferable to me personally.

  3. It’s my understanding we had a PTO system in the 90’s and it didn’t work well. Too many questions of how different situations/events should be handled.

    I would need details on exactly how it works. It’s my understanding that, despite it being called PTO, there actually still are two banks of time. I have a lot of time in both of my banks. I don’t want to lose any of it.

    One downside I’ve heard is that, when you’re genuinely sick for multiple days, the first two days still come out of the PTO/vacation side and then the rest comes out of the sick side. If I’m genuinely sick, it ought to all come out of the sick side — I was sick!! So it should be sick time!

    I don’t want to lose any of my banked time. If they’re going to take any of this time away as a result of a new system, I expect to be cashed out for it. But back in 2005 when my son was born I had enough sick time to cover almost the entire 12 weeks to which I was entitled and vacation to cover the rest. It was a comforting feeling of security. I’d rather have the time and keep the system the way it is rather than change it.

    If it’s not broke — and for me, it’s not — don’t fix it.

  4. Do we have any idea of how our SIK and VAC hours will be rolled into PTO? I understand how young parents might prefer PTO, but we’ve had that system before and I much prefer our current system.

    1. There is no “will be” at this time, since there is no proposal on the table for Local 328 to address. However the program as rolled out to unclassified employees maintains the same total accruals and splits current sick leave accrual rates between the PTO bank and an Extended Illness Bank.

  5. I’m all for a switch to PTO, especially if it adds the benefit of paid parental leave and we continue to accrue PTO at at least the same rate of accrual of vacation + sick time, both now and in the future.

  6. I’ve been split about keeping our current vs PTO/Extended time… however, from what I understand of the proposed system, all/most of my banked sick hours (and I have ALOT of it accrued) be rolled into this extended/sick bank… I’m actually against that, as I feel that what has been proposed encourages folks to be call in sick multiple days. From a personal stand point, I feel such a policy would pose hardship, especially on units/clinics that are already short staffed.

  7. Personally I just don’t see the benefit to employees with this, I would much rather keep the current system.

  8. The rate of vacation accrual for AFSCME employees is already significantly behind the other employee groups. PTO is something to consider but only if our rate of accrual matches that of ONA employees. It takes an AFSCME employee 20 years to make the vacation accrual of a new hire ONA employee. This is unacceptable.
    ONA years 1-5 rate= .0923 total= 192 hours
    AFSCME years 1-5 rate = 0.0461 total = 96 hours
    AFSCME years 20+ rate = 0.0923 total 192 hours
    Why has nothing ever been done about this?!

  9. I’m strongly opposed. We should reject this offer for the same reasons the Nursing Union rejected it. Please take a moment and talk to an OHSU nurse. I can’t speak for them but I see a tremendous long term down side.
    1. For those who are lucky enough not to use their sick leave there is a tremendous benefit at retirement to having accrued sick leave. This agreement would sharply reduce the amount of money many would receive at retirement. It is truly a minimal short term gain when looked at the cost over the long term.
    2. The environment which we work in if full of sick individuals. Part of the agreement made with management is they will try to make sure this is a safe place to work. However we work with and among some of the sickest people in our community. Sick leave is there so when one of us becomes sick because of the environment we work in we are compensated.
    3. Of the two previous companies where I worked where management implemented a cost saving program like this my coworkers came to work sick more often. The results is I came home sick more often because of them.

    1. There is no offer to reject, yet. The system proposed for the unclassified folks allows them to add PTO back to the extended illness bank so retirement is not harmed.

  10. I cannot express how opposed I am to going to a PTO system strong enough. It was a disaster when we tried it in the ’90s, and I have no reason to believe it won’t be equally as awful now. I have self-interested reasons to be against this: I have a lot of sick leave, and being Tier 1, I accumulate more vacation time than most. Parental leave means nothing to me. There is no way that my retirement won’t be harmed by this change. There is no way that I won’t lose several days of vacation time each year. There’s no way that OHSU would propose this change if it didn’t benefit them. And my very cynical side says that OHSU wouldn’t propose this change unless it hurt PERS employees and employees with seniority.

    1. Without takings sides, but adding a couple of facts – the total accruals would remain the same. PERS folks would have an option to move PTO to the etended illness bank to hold their retirement harmless.

  11. I strongly oppose the change. Having separate banks for sick, and vacation is the best option. Those people that are on board with this….will be the ones that use their sick time way too much, and run out of it. There should be no reason why the majority of us workers should ever run out of sick time. I asked around and most people have anywhere between 400 and 800 hours of sick time, and yes all those people I asked have kids just like I do.
    I don’t think penalizing the people that use their sick time responsibly, by helping out the people that don’t is by all means a good thing.

  12. I am not a fan of the idea of changing to PTO. While I think that the idea of paid parental leave is great, it favors employees who are at a certain point in their lives. This might be construed as discriminatory for those who while employed by OHSU did not receive this same benefit, or are not choosing to have children or are too young or old to benefit from the benefit. It may cause a huge problem that OHSU legal team hasn’t thought of. Also, I would like to see a side by side analysis of the current system vs. PTO. Who does this change truly benefit? Employee or OHSU? Just curious.

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