AUPE Media Release: UCP Must Stop Privatization for Persons With Developmental Disabilities
Union notified of privatization last week
EDMONTON – Members of the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees (AUPE) are calling on the UCP Government to stop any plans to privatize services for Persons with Developmental Disabilities (PDD) after they were sent letters of intent last week.
“The UCP need to put a stop to this privatization immediately,” says Chair of AUPE’s Anti-Privatization Committee Kevin Barry. “The number one resource in supporting Persons with Developmental Disabilities are the staff. Concerned family members are already reaching out to us. They are concerned about what privatization means for keeping staff and providing quality services.”
Last week letters were e-mailed to AUPE members working for Edmonton Region PDD Residential and Support Services, Family Support for Children with Disabilities (FCSD) services provided at Rosecrest and Hardisty Home, and Calgary Region PDD Graduated Supports. These letters gave the false impression that the Government had already entered into consultations with AUPE about “alternative delivery” of PDD services, when consultations have yet to take place.
“Our members are already meeting and committing to stopping this from happening,” says Barry. “They know any ‘savings’ will come off their backs, with privatization likely leading to lower wages, no pension, and reduced benefits. This makes it harder for providers to keep staff who build relationships and trust with the people they serve.”
In the letter e-mailed to AUPE members, the Government claims that “no decision has been made”, it is currently unknown which providers may be considered and what specific plans the Government has in mind after the end of the 90 day “consultation” period.
“We don’t trust them when they say ‘no decision has been made’,” says Barry. “This government is ideologically driven to privatize, and so we will be discussing all options to work with families and the public for collective action to protect these valuable services.”
AUPE Vice-President and Chair of Anti-Privatization Committee Kevin Barry is available for comment.
For more information contact Trevor Zimmerman, Communications, 780-919-9975.