We applaud the courage and commitment of our members, who have been on the front lines throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. The past 15 months have shown just how vital our public services truly are, and just how badly underfunded they have been due to decades of austerity by governments at all levels.

We will forever remember how our members, and public service workers the world over, stepped up and delivered the services we all rely on in uncertain times. Many contracted COVID-19, and many passed away, while working to serve their communities. We must never forget them.

To mark UN Public Service Day, CUPE is joining the call by Public Services International (PSI) for global action to stop the billions of dollars that flow to offshore tax havens – money that should be used to fund an equitable recovery backstopped by quality public services.

CUPE also supports PSI’s call for care work, which is often delivered by women, to be recognized, valued, supported and well-funded. We must not repeat the mistakes that handcuffed health care, public health, long-term care, and other front line care services, and lead to so many tragic and preventable deaths during the pandemic.

Finally, CUPE acknowledges the importance of rapid vaccination of the world’s population. Governments and public sector workers are critical to this process. CUPE supports the global push to remove patents and other barriers to scaled-up vaccine production and distribution. Canada has been a roadblock to these life-saving efforts, and that must end. Take action today by writing your MP and demanding their support for a people’s vaccine.

Read more:

Public Services: More Essential than Ever (PSI)

Manifesto: Rebuilding the social organization of care (PSI)