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Truro, Nova ScotiaCUPE Nova Scotia President Danny Cavanagh says he is dismayed that the health minister has named an advisory panel to help with consolidating the District Health Authorities (DHAs) with zero representation from labour.

“We are talking about a workforce that is close to 80% unionized, and we are supposed to expect that this panel will somehow be able to provide feedback that’s balanced and thoughtful,” asks Cavanagh.

“The vast majority of workers in our health care system are unionized workers. What does this say to these workers and their unions? It says that we have a provincial government and a health minister who appears to be out of touch with the realities of the health care system,” says Cavanagh. 
CUPE Acute Care Co-ordinator Wayne Thomas, meanwhile, says, “For Minister Glavine to suggest they are building a health care system focused on enhanced quality and safety – his words – and not include one single union voice on his panel is, frankly, shocking.” 

Thomas says CUPE represents some 4,300 frontline health workers in eight DHAs across the province. It is the largest health care union outside of the Capital District.  

CUPE is also the largest health care union in Canada, with over 150,000 healthcare workers in every province, with a wealth of expertise in the sector.