Over 100 workers at Misericordia Hospital in Edmonton, members of CUPE 2111, took their lunch hour Tuesday to shine some light on the impact poor working conditions and low wages are having on patient care.
“The system is breaking down because we are constantly short-staffed,” said local president Peggy Morton. “If anyone has any doubt about the importance of support staff to patient care they just need to take a good look at what is happening inside this hospital.”
Currently in negotiations with the Capital Health Authority, the local is pushing for better wages and benefits to improve recruitment and retention and to ease the serious workload in housekeeping, food services, maintenance and administration.
The demonstrators handed out information illustrating the impact staff shortages can have on patient care.
“Imagine a trip to the hospital without clean rooms, sterile instruments, faulty plumbing and no one to take patient information, retrieve records or schedule procedures. While many think of doctors and nurses when they think of health care providers, the work that these people do is critical to care,” said Morton.