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Ottawa- Canadians are being shut out of discussions that are fundamental to the future of our country. That was the concern expressed today by Judy Darcy, National President of the Canadian Union of Public Employees, Canada’s largest union.

M0069006eisters are meeting behind closed doors, restructuring the services that Canadians depend on without any public input or accountability, 00730061id Darcy. T00680065y’re talking about who will fund and control essential services like health care, education and the social safety net and we’ve no idea what deals are being made. 000a003cp>Federal and provincial officials have been meeting in a series of closed-door sessions this week to discuss reform of the social union.

W00650020shouldn’t have to rely on leaks to the media to find out what’s happening in discussions that are every bit as important as Charlottetown or Meech Lake, 00730061id Darcy. C0061006eadians reacted strongly when politicians thought that they could broker a deal behind our backs. We’re heading into the next century but they’re still stuck in the closed-door politics of the last century. 000a003cp>I00740027s not just the process that concerns us, 00740068e CUPE leader said. W00650020know that some provinces want to reduce the federal role in health so they can privatize parts of the health care system. And we know that some want to thwart new programs such as home care that are urgently needed. 000a003cp>W00650027re calling on the Prime Minister to make public the proposal his government tabled so that Canadians can debate what’s at stake and tell our elected governments what we think, 00440061rcy concluded.

CUPE represents 460,000 women and men who work in health care, education, municipalities, social services, libraries, utilities, transportation and airlines.

January 13, 1999

For more information, contact: Robert Fox (613) 237-1590 ext. 264

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