They called on the province to take action to protect women-oriented and women-controlled services and tackle the issues of governance, accountability, and inclusion of boards of directors in the sector.
Clinical-type services are far removed from the original aim of shelters founded on feminist, activist principles of counselling, housing, and support for women in crisis, says former NAC president Doris Anderson.
At issue in the lockout are the careers of several long-serving crisis counsellors, who management wants to replace with social workers with masters degrees.
The Yellow Brick House board, which is dominated by three men, says it wants to replace the staff to hire more diverse and qualified staff.
But Zanana Akande, president of the Urban Alliance on Race Relations, says board members are targeting the very workers who have spoken out for quality services for women, and challenged racism, oppression, discrimination and homophobia in the workplace.
CUPE is calling for a review of the agency and open elections for a new board of directors reflective of the community. The ministry has yet to respond.
The lockout began January 24 when management closed the shelter, locking out 38 workers and displacing residents to an insecure location.
Add your voice to the calls for a review at: http://cupe.ca/action/YellowBrickHouse