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I just moved to Toronto and a new graduate. I am also sending a lot of resumes out and have found it very difficult in terms of getting any kind of response. I am not sure that any nursing job will have a manageable workload just from my practical experiences in Ottawa. One question though, wouldn't the pay rate be the same given that employers follow the collective agreement of ONA, or are some long term health care facilities non unionized?
Not all hospitals or nursing homes are under ONA. Most hospitals are under ONA but there are a few (and they're dwindling, such as Sickkids) who are non-unionized. Some nursing homes that are owned by the City of Toronto are actually under CUPE which is a different union. I think some Toronto Public Health nurses are under CUPE as well. So it depends.
As to the best nursing homes in TO? I have no idea. It really depends on the facility itself. If you're an RN, sometimes you're the only RN on duty per shift for the whole building, especially on nights.
Pay wise, I heard that those owned by the city of Toronto start at $34/hr (which is higher than the starting wage at both unionized and non unionized hospitals in TO, that's for sure).