For Immediate Release - September 21, 2020
Saskatoon – Home Care Schedulers, Continuing Care Assistants, and Licensed Practical Nurses who are members of SEIU-West want to remind their clients in Saskatoon that they are still without a collective agreement and are frustrated with the lack of progress in negotiations with the Saskatchewan Association of Health Organizations (SAHO) due to the Sask Party government’s refusal to fund a fair deal.
“Our home care clients deserve to receive quality health care that is compassionate, thoughtful and well resourced,” says President of SEIU-West Barbara Cape. “Under the current government’s plan for health care, clients are being short-changed on time and having their care rushed because of a government that puts quality care last.”
Several years ago, there was a push to do LEAN assessments in home care services which saw people following home care workers with stop watches so they could steal time away from clients receiving care and save budget dollars. This is confirmed in the SHA data that establishes an eight per cent decrease in home care services funding since 2014.
“The changes implemented have not resulted in the desired results,” adds Cape. “In fact, our members have reported a higher workload and less staff to accomplish the tasks on a day to day basis. This government has done no favours to people seeking home care. ”
Since the August 12 demonstrations that took place at multiple sites across Saskatoon, SEIU-West members have held events in a number of communities including Swift Current, Biggar, Wilkie, Craik, Davidson and Moose Jaw. Future events have been requested by members to take place in Kyle, Wynyard, Rosetown, Kindersley, Lanigan, Assiniboia, and Lafleche and the list continues to grow.
“Our members are your neighbours, family, and friends, and they need your help to fix this situation and put pressure on this government to invest in our health care system,” adds Cape. “Our members’ working conditions become the conditions in which the public receives and experiences health care services and we all deserve better.”
During these demonstrations, the members of SEIU-West are following Public Health orders by physically distancing, wearing masks, practicing good hand hygiene, and attempting to maintain a maximum of 30 people in any given demonstration area.
SEIU-West members working for the SHA have been without a contract since March 31, 2017.
Service Employees International Union West (SEIU-West) represents over 13,000 people across Saskatchewan. They include people who work in health care, education, municipalities, community-based organizations, retirement homes and other sectors. They are joined by one colour – purple – and one union – SEIU-West. Visit PurpleWorks.ca to find out more about SEIU-West members.
For more information, contact:
Christine Miller, Communications Coordinator