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Fredericton The Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) wants New Brunswick Premier Bernard Lord to lead by example and stand up for the public delivery of health care services at the First Ministers conference next Tuesday.

We want to leave no doubt in Lords mind that it matters who owns our hospitals. We want accountability in health care spending that shows public dollars going to care. We dont want cloaks of commercial confidentiality or government secrecy anywhere near the delivery of public health care, says Phillip Morgan, member of CUPE Local 1252.

81% of Canadians* believe the provinces must guarantee federal health dollars are spent on health care and provide clear reporting as a condition of receiving more federal health care funding. 92% want federal funding earmarked for health care, as recommended by the Romanow Commission and 77% want the Prime Minister and Premiers to ensure health dollars go only to public, not-for-profit health care

Lord and the other premiers cant ignore what Canadians want. Theyll decide whether our health dollars are invested in public health care or whether they go to buy lawnmowers, pave highways, cut taxes or line the pockets of private, for-profit corporations, says Morgan. Well give Lord the same message other Premiers will get in Ottawa next week - health care is not for sale. We made it. We like it. We need it. We want it.

*(Pollara, January 2003)

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For more information:
David Rouse, President CUPE New Brunswick
506-432-0618 (cell), 506-432-6352 (home)
Phillip Morgan, Chair New Brunswick Council of Hospital Unions PR committee -
506-452-5309 (work), 506-450-3362 (home)
Richard McGrath, CUPE Communications -
613-237-1590 ext. 267 (work), 613-296-8438 (cell)