Pandemic Pay

Protests result in more staff covered–some still left out

Well-attended protests in front of most of Ontario’s hospitals on May 14 have resulted in the government adding many classifications to pandemic pay which it had not originally planned to include. Added are dietary aides, maintenance, sterilization, stores and receiving, and ward and unit clerks, forward facing clerical and administrative staff, and others.

Some classifications are still left out. OCHU and other health care unions intend to keep the pressure up to include everyone. 

Eligible Workers

List taken directly from, June 2, 2020

  • Personal support workers including home support workers, home help workers, community support workers, residential support workers, homemakers
  • Registered nurses
  • Registered practical nurses
  • Nurse practitioners
  • Attendant care workers
  • Auxiliary staff, including:
    • porters
    • cooks, food service, food preparation
    • custodians, cleaning/maintenance and environmental services staff, sterilization and reprocessing staff
    • housekeeping
    • laundry
    • security, screeners
    • stores/supply workers, receivers, department attendants
    • hospital ward and unit clerks
    • client facing reception/administrative workers, schedulers, administrative staff working in home and community care or community-based mental health and addictions
    • community drivers
    • community recreational staff/activity coordinators
  • Developmental services workers
  • Mental health and addictions workers: counsellors/therapists, case workers and case managers, intake/admissions, peer workers, residential support staff, Indigenous/cultural service workers
  • Respiratory therapists in hospitals and in the home and community care sector
  • Paramedics
  • Public health and infection prevention and control nurses

“I’m not covered, what can I do today?”

Working group established to recommend next steps in campaign to cover everyone 

OCHU has set up a working group with members who are excluded from pandemic pay, from a number of hospitals from across Ontario.

This committee will bring back a campaign plan. We will discuss this plan with the local union leadership and with the membership over the next two weeks.

Until then, we strongly encourage all members who are not currently covered to write their MPP and email the Ministry of Health.