Following a 12-hour, last-ditch bargaining session Wednesday, union leaders representing 2,400 UVM Medical Center support staff and technicians have reached a tentative agreement with hospital management that raises the minimum wage and offers greater job protection.

In an email to union members, leaders of the UVMMC Support Staff and Techs United said the “historic” agreement, which is pending ratification by union members, “guarantees safety, respect, and livable wages for all members.”

According to the email, the provisions agreed to by the two sides include:

  • a new minimum of $20 per hour for the lowest paid position;
  • an average initial increase of 22.22% or $4.50 per hour;
  • a 20-step wage scale process for equity adjustments based on experience;
  • increases of 5% and 5% in each subsequent year of contract;
  • a floating holiday that can be used for cultural/religious holidays;
  • no union position can be laid off and outsourced.

Support staff and technicians voted to unionize in January and contract negotiations began in May. Union members are scheduled to hold a celebration of the agreement at 4:30 p.m. Thursday at 96 Colchester Avenue.

In urging its members to ratify it, union leaders called the called the tentative agreement “huge, in many cases life-changing….

“Our bargaining team is proudly endorsing this contract and recommending that you vote YES to ratify it,” the email said, ading that more information about the vote would be available soon.

This is a developing story and will be updated