Letter to the Editor- Health Care Workers Underappreciated by Provincial Government (June, 2020)
Health Care Workers Underappreciated by Provincial Government
I think the health care workers in Saskatoon deserve a huge thank you from our community. So far these individuals have successfully prevented any COVID-19 outbreaks in our long-term care homes and hospitals. Compared to other provinces, these dedicated people have done an impressive job.
Most of the health care workers in Saskatoon are members of SEIU West. These members include laboratory technologists, LPNs (nurses), continuing care assistants, housekeepers, and many other professions too numerous to mention. The sad fact is these people have been working without a contract for more than four years. They are not walking out or striking because their jobs are too important to walk away from.
The provincial government takes advantage of this dedication and throws crumbs at them. The current contract offer is five per cent over five years with the first two years having no increase at all.
If our teachers are worth six per cent over four years and our city employees are getting 6.9 per cent over four years, how can the province offer less over a longer period of time?
The offer to the health care workers is insulting and disrespectful. They are there for us to do all of the necessary testing, keep our facilities clean and safe for patients, and care for our loved ones, but the government is not there for them when a fair contract is overdue.
It’s time for the Saskatchewan Association of Health Organizations (SAHO) to treat these people with respect instead of kicking them in the butt.
Shame on you Premier Moe for turning your back on this essential service group.