EDMONTON – Social services workers who are members of Local 006 of the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees will hold a province-wide day of protest today to draw public attention to their concerns about heavy workloads.

Social workers and other social service workers will hold lunch-hour information pickets in six communities to protest against heavy caseloads that are contributing to employee burnout and high staff turnover, said Local 006 Chair Maureen Braun.

The protests will be held from 12 noon to 1 p.m. in Edmonton, Calgary, Barrhead, Red Deer, Lethbridge and Medicine Hat. A list of locations and contact people is included below.

“We are constantly losing people and never catching up because of this,” said Braun. “People are quitting as fast as they can be trained because their workloads are so heavy.”

Braun noted that Local 006 members are aware that Alberta Children’s Services has a workload committee looking at the situation, but they are concerned the time frame for addressing the problem is far too long. “The minister needs to take immediate action to resolve the workload issues before the situation gets any worse.”

Local 006 represents social services workers who are direct employees of the government of Alberta.

For more information, contact:

Maureen Braun, Chair, AUPE Local 006, 780-717-5000 (cellular phone)

David Climenhaga, Communications Director, AUPE, 780-930-3311 or 780-717-2943 (cellular phone)

Local 006 workload protest times and locations

Edmonton: Peace Hills Trust Tower, 100th Avenue and 109th Street. Contact: Fred Hill, 780-415-0902 (work) or 780-481-4930 (home); Sandra Azocar, 780-422-2001 (work) or 780-461-2444 (home); Guy Smith, 780-454-0411 (work) or 780-436-5199 (home).

Barrhead: Administration Building, 5143 – 50th Street. Contact: Jill Trites, 780-674-8335.

Calgary: MacDougall Centre, 455 – 6th St. S.W. Contact: Donna Smith, 403-297-5827 (work) or 403-730-8549 (home); Gail Iler, 403-297-2851 (work) or 403-284-1919.

Red Deer: Provincial Building, 4920 – 51 Street. Contact: Christopher D’Lima, 403- 360-7582 (work) or 403-347-8216 (home); Carol Ramage, 403-340-5580 (work).

Lethbridge: Provincial Building, 200 – 5th Ave. S. Contact: Carol Sekiya, 403-388-7651 (work) or 403-329-4237 (home); Lorraine Buchanan, 403-381-5314 (work) or 403-394-9113 (home).

Medicine Hat: Provincial Building, 346 3rd St. S.E. Contact: Melanie Metcalf, 403-529-3153 (work) or 403-529-9743 (home); Cory Basiuk 403-529-3143 (work).

photo: Social services workers who are members of Local 006 held rallies around the province Oct. 30, like this one in Calgary, to protest their heavy caseloads.