Sandra Brayer, UNA
Sandra’s been nursing for 20 years and for the last several she worked a straight night shift as a float across medical and surgical units at the University of Alberta Hospital in Edmonton.
Sandra Brayer is one of the first nurses to take advantage of the new “weekend worker” shift recently negotiated in Alberta.
“I work a 0.8 (full-time equivalent FTE) but I get paid full time. It’s been nice,” Sandra says. “I went to the weekend worker job to try out a day-evening shift schedule,” she says. I work four shifts, Friday to Monday for three weeks and on the fourth week, I just do three shifts. You get paid for an extra shift each week,” is the simple way Sandra explains it.
She says the Grey Nuns Hospital where she’s taken the new job is always short on weekends, and even with two other weekend workers, there’s always been lots of gaps to fill.
But, she says “the toughest part has been working every weekend.” Sandra has two kids, and not having time to spend with her teenage daughter on weekends has been difficult. Now with summer coming and people heading out for recreation on weekends, Sandra really wonders about working every weekend. She says it might work better for parents of young children or couples who are juggling daycare.
But this week she did have four straight days, Monday to Thursday, off. “I get all my stuff done during the week when other people are working.”