Workers in private health care flocking to join AUPE
AgeCare SkyPointe workers in Calgary join list of nearly 1,600 seeking union help
Another group of workers in private, for-profit health care have joined the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees (AUPE) to further their fight for quality patient care and better working conditions.
The Alberta Labour Relations Board (ALRB) confirmed yesterday that nursing-care workers at AgeCare’s SkyPointe seniors’ facility at 179 Skyview Circle N.E., Calgary, had successfully voted to join AUPE. It issued a certificate for the union to act as bargaining agent for the employees.
“These are just the latest in a long line of workers in private care who are turning to AUPE as they see declines in their working conditions and the care offered to residents and patients,” says Karen Weiers, vice-president of AUPE, Alberta’s largest union with more than 96,000 members.
“There are 17 other private facilities in Alberta where a total of nearly 1,600 members have turned to AUPE in the last 18 months and are seeking a first contract,” she says.
“The core issues are always the same. These workers love their residents and want to be able to provide quality care, but operators, whether in for-profit or non-profit facilities, are often operating short of staff and make decisions based on their bottom lines rather than care. They offer no accountability for their decisions or how they spend the money they get from the government to care for our seniors.”
Weiers issued a warning to private operators thinking of expanding in Alberta as the current government seeks to hand over more vital public health-care services to corporate interests.
“We’re waiting for you. Health-care workers know that AUPE is strong and will fight for them and for Albertans receiving care. You may have heard Alberta is open for business, but we will not let you skim off profits from taxpayer funds that should go to care. We won’t let you cut corners in care so you can boost bonuses to executives and payouts to shareholders. Alberta workers, Alberta patients and Alberta taxpayers deserve better.”
Other care facilities where AUPE is currently seeking a first contract include:
- AgeCare SkyPointe, Calgary – AgeCare
- Bethany Riverview, Calgary – Bethany Care Society
- Eau Claire Care Residence, Calgary – Chartwell Master Care
- The Estates, The Manor, The Park and The Villa, Edmonton – Rosedale Assisted Living
- Foyer Lacombe, St. Albert – Covenant Care
- Griesbach, Heritage Valley and Wild Rose Retirement Residences, Edmonton – Chartwell Master Care
- Mount View Lodge, Olds – Mountain View Seniors Lodging
- Points West Living, Lac La Biche – Points West Living
- River Ridge Retirement Living, St. Albert – Revera
- Rocky Ridge Retirement Community, Calgary – Signature Retirement Living
- St. Elizabeth Health Care, Wetaskiwin – Points West Living
- St. Teresa Place, Calgary – Covenant Care
- Wentworth Manor, Calgary – Brenda Strafford Foundation
For more information:
Terry Inigo-Jones, AUPE communications officer, 403-831-4394