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BRANDON Judy Darcy, head of Canadas largest union, says the future of Medicare in Canada for decades to come will be decided in the next few months and Manitoba Premier Gary Doer has a key role to play in defending public health care.

“Right wing premiers like BCs Gordon Campbell and Albertas Ralph Klein have no intention of waiting for the Romanow Commission to report - they want to box him in now,” says Darcy. “They are moving ahead with massive privatization of health care.

Darcy applauded the strong leadership role that Premier Doer played at the recent Premiers conference, blunting the drive by Albertas Ralph Klein to open up more of our health care system to for-profit services.

We are looking to Premier Doer to take a strong stand against privatization in all its forms and to continue to set a very strong example for the country as Manitoba did when it passed legislation to ban public funding of private clinics in the province, says Darcy. Manitoba needs to lead the fight in defending public health care for all Canadians for generations to come.

Darcy will be in Brandon tomorrow to speak at 2:30 p.m. to 300 delegates meeting at the Keystone Centre for the CUPE Manitoba convention. Manitoba Premier Gary Doer will speak to CUPE delegates Friday morning at 11:00 a.m.

The Canadian Union of Public Employees is Canadas largest union representing a half-million women and men across the country. In Manitoba, CUPE represents 24,000 members in health care, education, municipalities, social services, child care, utilities, libraries and emergency services.

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For more information contact:
Doreen Meyer, CUPE Communications
Allen Bleich, CUPE Manitoba Coordinator
Cell: (204) 781-8781