CUPE 204 Bylaws Adopted!

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CUPE members from health care facilities across Winnipeg have voted overwhelmingly in favour of the new CUPE Local 204 Bylaws!

The next step towards building our new Local is voting for a new Local Executive!

Thank you to all the members who voted for our new Bylaws! We’re well on our way to becoming Winnipeg’s largest, strongest health care support union and we couldn’t have done it without so much participation from CUPE health care support members!

Member Update on WRHA Changes

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Health Sciences Centre, Seven Oaks General Hospital, and Grace Hospital have recently provided CUPE with an “Employment Security” notice, outlining plans to make major changes to the rotations and structure of health care support positions at Health Sciences Centre (HSC) and Seven Oaks General Hospital (SOGH).

HSC, SOGH, and Grace Hospital have asked CUPE to meet in the coming weeks to discuss these changes. First and foremost, we will ensure that the collective agreements at HSC, SOGH, Grace Hospital and all other CUPE facilities are followed and honoured. CUPE has been very clear that we disagree with the government’s overall plan to restructure health care.

The WRHA has met only a few times with CUPE and other health care unions and has consistently announced major changes with very little notice to unions and very few details. This is unacceptable.

All health care unions, including Manitoba Association of Health Care Professionals (MAHCP), United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW) and the Manitoba Nurses Union (MNU) have expressed similar frustration with the lack of detail provided by the employer to date.

CUPE’s position is that we cannot support the WRHA’s “Healing Our Health System” or “Manage to Budget” projects when we are provided with so few details on how the changes will affect our members.

CUPE members across Manitoba, including CUPE members at HSC, SOGH and Grace Hospital have held information pickets and rallies against the government’s health care restructuring and we will continue to do so to raise awareness in the public that these cuts will hurt, not heal the health care system.

Rest assured that CUPE is doing everything possible to protect members’ jobs, and we are doing everything possible to protect the health care services you provide.

As mentioned, the WRHA will be meeting with us in the coming weeks, and we will do everything we can to ensure CUPE members are being treated fairly. While we expect the conversation will continue to be a one-way street, we will make it clear that we cannot accept job losses or cuts.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you hear rumours or if you feel like you are being treated unfairly by your employer. Rest assured, you are CUPE’s #1 priority.

If you would like to take immediate action, please contact the Minister of Health and your local Member of the Legislative Assembly and express your disappointment with the way the government has implemented their health care restructuring, and your fears on how it will impact the important services you provide to Manitobans.

You can contact your MLA on the Legislative Assembly of Manitoba website:
We will provide further information as we receive it.

CUPE Local 204 draft bylaws

CUPE ManitobaPHCC Main, PHCC News

CUPE health care members in the WRHA have been busy all summer drafting a new set of bylaws for what will become Winnipeg’s largest health care union!
Members of the new CUPE Local 204 have the opportunity to develop and review the draft bylaws, before being voted on by the membership.

Please review and send all your feedback and suggestions via our contact form: Contact us

Download Draft_Local_204_Bylaws

WRHA announces cuts to frontline workers, more health care closures

CUPE ManitobaPHCC Main, PHCC News

The WRHA has once again announced a slew of cuts to patient care and privatization of services that will directly affect Manitobans and the front-line health care workers who provide the services.

Today’s WRHA announcement cuts deeper than before, with whole clinics being shut down, and promises to reduce staffing levels in WRHA facilities.

Among those clinics being closed are:
• Four QuickCare clinics;
• The Corydon Primary Care Clinic, which specializes in diabetes care;
• The Mature Women’s Centre, a multi-disciplinary facility which specializes in gynecological issues, including menopause transition and hysterectomy alternatives.

“At this point we can safely say that health care in Manitoba is in distress,” said Debbie Boissonneault, President of CUPE’s Provincial Health Care Council. “This government is going too far, too fast, and someone is going to get hurt.”

There has been no indication how many front-line workers will be cut, but the WRHA irresponsibly claims that Manitoba has “too many” health care workers.

Today’s announcement suggests a planned reduction of front-line staff by claiming the WRHA will introduce new staff-to-patient ratios and “mixed” duties, with no further details.

“Brian Pallister said that he will ‘protect’ front line workers,” said Boissonneault, “But this government has finally come out with the truth: there will now be fewer front-line health care staff to care for Manitobans”.

The announcement also indicates the privatization of adult outpatient physiotherapy and hospital-based occupational therapy clinic services, as well as the Grace Hospital retail food services. Meals currently made on-site at Middlechurch Home will in the future be provided by the Regional Distribution Facility.

The WRHA is also increasing various fees for various services.

“The WRHA and provincial government are decimating our health care system with reckless cuts, closures, and privatization,” said Boissonneault. “This must be stopped”.

CUPE members protest cuts to health care in Manitoba

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CUPE members were out en-force on July 6, protesting the Manitoba government’s cuts to health care.

“Employees at Health Sciences Centre (HSC) and CancerCare Manitoba are overworked, understaffed, and deeply concerned with the Pallister government’s massive changes to health care” said CUPE Local 1550, representing support staff at HSC and CancerCare Manitoba.

With Emergency Rooms and Urgent Care Centres closed, new long-term care facilities canceled, the cancellation of the new CancerCare building, and other hospital programs being cut and shuffled around, a bigger burden will be placed on HSC with no sign of new resources.

“The government’s cavalier plans for health care have been confusing, chaotic, and have deeply hurt staff morale”, said CUPE 1550. “How can HSC handle major increases in patient flow? How can health care workers do their jobs when the government keeps making cuts and systemic changes?”

Pickets were held from 7:15am – 9am, 11am – 1pm, and 3pm – 5pm throughout the day to facilitated shift changes so members could join the picket line. Local media noted the significant support from members of the community driving by.

Recent polling found that the majority of Manitobans are opposed to the governments closure of Emergency Rooms and Urgent Care Centres. CUPE and other unions have held numerous rallies against cuts, including outside the Concordia Hospital, Seven Oaks General Hospital, Victoria Hospital, Misericordia Hospital, at the Manitoba Legislature, and in Flin Flon.

“Our pickets today are to keep the pressure on the government by continuing to raise awareness against the cuts”, said CUPE 1550.

CUPE members from Locals 500, 998, 1599, 1973, and 2348 came out in support!

CUPE members were also joined by dozens of activists from sister unions, including Amalgamated Transit Union 1505, Canadian Postal Workers, Manitoba Association of Health Care Professionals, Manitoba Federation of Labour, Manitoba Government & General Employees Union, Manitoba Nurses Union, Public Service Alliance of Canada, Unifor, and Workers United.

Unions file court injunction against Pallister’s wage freeze bill

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Today CUPE, through the Manitoba Federation of Labour’s Partnership to Defend Public Services filed a court injunction to the Manitoba Court of Queen’s Bench against Pallister’s Bill 28, the “Public Services Sustainability Act”.

Terry Egan (second, back row) with other labour leaders.

Bill 28 is also known widely as the public sector wage freeze bill.

“CUPE is taking concrete action against Bill 28,” says Lee McLeod, Regional Director of CUPE. “By filing an injunction we are sending a clear message that we believe the wage freeze legislation is unconstitutional, and must be stopped”.

Bill 28 was tabled on March 20, 2017 by the Pallister government, and passed in June.

Bill 28 has not yet been enacted into law, which means this injunction could prevent the Bill from actually taking effect. The court injunction process may take a number of months to complete.

“We will fight Pallister’s attacks on families in the courts of law, in the halls of power, and in the streets” says Terry Egan, President of CUPE Manitoba.

“This government will no longer be able to pass laws that hurt Manitoba families without a fight”.

For more information on the Partnership to defend Public Services’ efforts to fight Bill 28, visit the MFL’s page.

Pallister Government’s Plan for Health Care: Create as much confusion as possible

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Today the Minister of Health has once again announced major changes to Manitoba’s health care system. These changes will cause greater confusion and frustration within the health care system which is already facing government cuts and restructuring.

“Pallister is already assaulting our ERs, Urgent Care centres, and other hospital programs in Winnipeg, and now he wants to restructure the system province-wide? It’s nothing short of reckless,” said Shannon McAteer, CUPE Health Care Coordinator. “Causing widespread confusion and uncertainty in the health care system will hurt staff morale and will frustrate patients.”

CUPE Provincial Health Care Council President Debbie Boissonneault

The provincial government has already imposed system-wide cuts in the form of forcing RHAs to find “savings”, as well as hundreds of jobs cut from management positions. The new Provincial Health Organization will supposedly find even more “savings”, but the government is unclear where those savings will come from or what front-line positions will be affected.

“The provincial government is playing a dangerous game with our health care system,” said McAteer. “Playing shuffle-board with our health care programs is irresponsible.”

Using the same Peachy Report they used to cut ERs and shuffle hospital programs around in Winnipeg, the government is now taking aim at Rural Health Authorities and province-wide programs with yet-to-be-determined cuts and changes. The government is unclear on what exact changes will be made to important services including Diagnostic Services of Manitoba Inc. and how these changes will affect staff.

“The government’s approach to health care creates so much uncertainty and leaves health care providers and support workers with more questions than answers,” said McAteer. “With so much being changed at once, we are deeply concerned that patient care, staff morale, and actual programming will be irreparably damaged.”