Nova Scotia Nurses' Union staff can provide advice and answers to your questions on topics such as filing grievances, interpreting contracts, negotiations, legal advice. Below is a list of some frequently asked questions. 

What is a grievance?

A Grievance is any violation or difference of interpretation of a collective agreement. Some agreements can include any other complaint relating to working conditions or relations between the nurses and the Hospital concerning the meaning, interpretation, application, administration or alleged violation of this Agreement. The NSNU represents numerous nurses in grievances each year. 

What is arbitration?

Arbitration is the process by which the parties to a dispute submit their differences to the judgment of an impartial person or group appointed by mutual consent or statutory provision.

Arbitrations are referred to that stage by the Grievance Committee upon denial of the grievance by the Employer at the final grievance stage. At this point, an Arbitrator is appointed to provide a final and binding decision on the Grievance.

How do I file a grievance?

If you have a grievance with your employer, your first step is to speak with your Local’s Shop Steward/Local Executive Member, who is trained to assist you in the grievance process.

What’s my Local Number?

The Nova Scotia Nurses’ Union does not use Local numbers. Your Local is identified by the name of the workplace. (e.g. IWK, Cape Breton Regional Hospital, Glasgow Hall)

How do I update my personal information?

Please contact Nancy MacDonald at or 902-469-1474 ext. 300 to update your personal information with the Union. This includes any address changes or change of name. If you have an email address and would like to receive your newsletter via email, please contact us as well to make sure we have the correct address.

What if I work at two facilities and NSNU dues are taken twice?

Union Dues Rebates: If you are working at more than one facility and paying union dues more than once in a pay period, you are eligible to receive a rebate of the additional dues you have paid over and above the regular bi-weekly rates.

If you are a casual member who has been paid “less than” 7.5 hours (applicable to acute care members) or 8 hours (applicable to long term care members) in a bi-weekly pay period you are eligible for a union dues rebate.

If either of the above applies to you, please contact Verna Harrie at 1-800-469-1474 / 902-469-1474 (ext. 304) or.

What is the difference between the Union and the College?

The Union is your certified bargaining agent to represent you in matters concerning your employment that arise under the collective agreement.

The College is the regulatory body for all licensed nurses in the province. Due to recent changes to the Nursing Act, the Colleges for LPNs, RNs and NPs have merged to become the Nova Scotia College of Nursing (NSCN).

Please note that any questions regarding the renewal of, or registration for professional licenses are to be directed to the College. See below for contact information.

Nova Scotia College of Nursing

Suite 300 – 120 Western Parkway
Bedford, Nova Scotia, B4B 0V2

Local Phone: 902-444-6726
Toll Free in Canada: 833-267-6726
Fax: 902-377-5188