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British Columbia Ambulance Service

Size of company: Large (More than 500 employees)

Industry: Health Care, Social Assistance

  • BCAS staffs remote stations by forcing new employees to work hours and hours away from where they live without compensating them for travel. These remote stations are "on call" stations where employees are paid $2/hr to be available by pager and are often given arbitrary response time targets by there direct supervisors despite there not being any in the collective agreement. Theses employees are only paid there normal pay rate when they respond to a call out. New employees (often with little street experience) are placed in these remote communities with little to no support for dealing with the completely foreseeable situations that they will have to deal with. The remote stations are often rat infested and have failing infrastructure (no potable water, plumbing that doesn't function).
    The BCAS is using a pay system for remote areas that was designed for people who live in the area to staff an ambulance resource and forcing on new employees as an unethical way to get cheap labour to fill the BCAS's contractual obligation to the Province of BC.
    The organization lack leadership on every level. The QA is almost non existent. Jobs that are done poorly are never corrected and there is almost never any feedback unless there is a poor patient outcome or the press becomes involved. Moral is horrendous and there is nothing being done at any level to correct it from what I can see.
    The majority of the BCAS ambulances are staffed by "part time" (really casual) employees. These employees work primarily at remote and rural stations. They work anywhere from one or two shifts a month to 80+ hours a week. The turnover is incredibly high. These employees are forced to work overtime with no compensation making it difficult to work a second job. The schedule is unpredictable and cannot be counted on for any predictable income.
    Overall, the BCAS is at a tipping point for functioning or failing. It's chronically understaffed at the current level of Ambulances when the reality is there needs to be more resources available to meet the current demand.
    This employer fails to meet Maslow's hierarchy of needs at every level.

    Posted on 24 March 2014 by Rater #27 | Flag as inappropriate

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