While today’s Manitoba budget announcement did not include significant funding increases to public services, CUPE is pleased that the budget does not include continued wage freezes for public sector workers.
“We appreciate that paying down the deficit is no longer shouldered by CUPE members as we have seen in previous budgets,” said CUPE Manitoba President Kelly Moist. “We are also pleased that we have not seen the types of cuts experienced by other provinces.”
CUPE applauds the government for providing additional funding resources to family services, schools and long-term care facilities, but cautions that these resources should be allocated to support staff that are on the front line providing care to Manitobans.
“Ensuring that our school support staff and health care aids receive their share of funding so they can do their work without over-stretched resources is important to quality education and health care,” states Moist. “We will work with the province to ensure that these additional resources are allocated appropriately.”
Funding commitments to family services and early learning are all important parts of the CUPE Pay Equity Campaign.
CUPE also supports the province’s move to generate revenue rather than cutting front-line services, but questions the province’s use of a sales tax, rather than increasing taxes to top income earners and the richest corporations.
“CUPE believes that those who are doing well in today’s economy, namely the richest corporations, should be paying their fair share,” continues Moist. “Manitoba needs to reassess its taxation policies, and move to a more equitable tax model.”
CUPE applauds the provincial government for taking leadership by increasing the minimum wage again this year, and will continue to monitor whether or not new infrastructure funding will be tied to private public partnerships.