AHS wants to slash GSS workers' wages by 4%
EDMONTON—Alberta Health Services (AHS) has informed the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees (AUPE) that it intends to slash General Support Services (GSS) workers’ wages by 4 per cent.
AHS shared this news with the AUPE AHS GSS bargaining team today (July 15) as negotiations restarted after being put on hold during the COVID-19 pandemic. This comes after AHS initially entered bargaining with a proposed 1 per cent wage cut in February 2020. AHS is proposing the 4 per cent cut apply immediately after ratifying the new agreement, followed by three years of zero per cent increases.
“It is indecent and obscene,” says AUPE Vice-President Susan Slade. “Everyone knows Premier Kenney and Health Minister Shandro have no respect for front-line health care workers, even after everything they’ve done for us during the pandemic, and here we see AHS following their orders to add insult to injury.
“How dare they attack front-line health care workers who are already stressed and beaten down because of the pandemic.”
AHS GSS workers are often the lowest paid AHS employees, and many have to work multiple jobs because of AHS frequently offering part-time and casual work. These AUPE members work in cleaning and environmental services, food services, laundry, lab work, protective services, supply chain and purchasing, long-term care, and more.
“It seems AHS wasn’t content attacking registered nurses with their own proposed wage cut,” says Slade. “Now they’re going after the lowest paid and most precariously employed workers in the entire Alberta health care team.”
Slade went on to say that these are the same 11,000 workers who Minister Shandro has shamelessly threatened to fire as part of his UCP government’s privatization schemes.
“What AHS considers job security is a joke,” she says. “Not only does Shandro and AHS want to roll back these hard-working health care heroes’ wages, but they also want to fire approximately one third of them anyway.
“The only way to stop them is to fight back. We’re going to give our all to protect AUPE members and all the Albertans who rely on the services they provide.”
Vice-President Susan Slade is available for interviews.
Please contact Alexander Delorme, AUPE Communications Officer: 780-264-9274 or email@example.com