To mark the day this year, we’re calling on CUPE members and our allies to add their voices to the campaign to fix long-term care.

COVID-19 has exposed the impact of neglect, cuts and privatization to many public services and programs. We’re seeing this starkly in the ongoing tragedy and crisis in long-term care. The pandemic has highlighted and deepened a crisis that has been affecting long-term care for years.

That’s why CUPE is campaigning to fix Canada’s long-term care system, by making it a part of our public universal health care system.

Decades of underfunding, understaffing, poor working conditions, high levels of violence, and a focus on profits over quality care have eroded Canada’s system of long-term care to the breaking point, leaving us tragically unprepared to protect the lives of our most vulnerable.

Add your voice demanding the federal government lead the way by making long-term care an accessible, publicly funded, and universal health care service, for national standards to make sure the needs of residents are being met, and for a dramatic increase in the number of long-term care beds and staff to ensure access and quality of care.

As we weather this crisis and look to the future, one thing is clear: we won’t go back to the way things were. CUPE stands in solidarity with public sector workers around the world who are also fighting privatization and deep cuts to services, demanding the equipment and protection they need to do their jobs safely, and calling for major reinvestments in services that are the foundation of safe and healthy communities.

CUPE is a member of Public Services International (PSI), the global trade union federation for public services workers, representing 30 million workers in 154 countries. On UN Public Service Day, PSI is demanding urgent action to boost public financing of public services, with a focus on health care. Key demands include:

  • progressive taxation that delivers the revenue needed to dramatically increase support for public services;
  • an end to national and international public sector wage constraint policies, which will help fully staff health care and other front-line public services; and
  • cancellation and renegotiation of debt for countries in the global South, so governments can invest in public services.

Read PSI’s statement here.