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Regina: The CUPE Health Care Council, which bargains on behalf of 12,000 health workers in five regions, begins contract negotiations today with the Saskatchewan Association of Health Organizations (SAHO).

We want to negotiate major improvements in this bargaining round aimed at making our health care system a better place to work, says Steve Foley, President of the Health Care Council. Far too many of our members continue to be sick or injured because of their work in the health system. That has to change.

CUPE health workers are seeking improved hours-of-work arrangements, better family leave provisions, reduced workloads, benefit improvements, and contract language that prevents any contracting-out or privatization of the health care system.

Our proposals are designed to protect and enhance our health care system so it works for everyone including our CUPE members who are on the front line of health delivery, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, says Foley.

The CUPE Health Care Council represents health workers in acute care, long term care, community care and home care in Regina QuAppelle, Prince Albert Parkland, Sunrise, Sun Country and Prairie North health regions. They are employed in a variety of positions including special care aides and dietary staff, licensed practical nurses, housekeeping, technicians and technologists, laundry, clerical and maintenance.

The agreement between CUPEs Health Care Council and SAHO expired on March 31. Foley says the two sides have bargaining dates until the end of December.

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For more information contact:
Steve Foley at 546-2185