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Unionized staff workers at Oakwood Healthcare Center in Amherst have approved a new three-year contract.

The agreement covers 125 certified nursing assistants and dietary, housekeeping, maintenance and laundry workers represented by Service Employees International Union Local 1199 Upstate at the Bassett Road facility. Their previous contract expired Jan. 22.

Under the new contract, the certified nursing assistants will receive an immediate $1 per hour pay increase, plus a 25-cent raise in May and a 25 cent increase in November. Other staff will receive three raises totaling between $1.10 and $1.45 by the end of November.

Though the new contract expires April 1, 2004, SEIU said the wages and benefits will be renegotiated in April 2002 to coincide with statewide bargaining in the nursing home industry.

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