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Winnipeg CUPE, Manitobas largest health care union, has asked Health Minister David Chomiak to proclaim a week to recognize the contributions made by health care support workers in our province.

Support workers are the backbone of health care, yet theres little recognition for the important role they play within the system and the contribution they make on a daily basis to all Manitobans, says CUPE Health Care Coordinator Lorraine Sigurdson.

More than 8,500 CUPE members across the province work as support workers in hospitals, community facilities, and personal care homes. Support workers maintain medical records, provide nursing support, perform housekeeping services, process laundry, sterilize equipment, cook and serve meals, receive and transport materials, provide recreational activities, maintain equipment and facilities, and transport patients as well as hundreds of other tasks.

Following a recent meeting with the Health Minister, CUPE sent Chomiak a letter requesting that the province proclaim a week to honour the contributions made by Manitobas health care support workers.

Support workers are just as dedicated to patient care and keeping our health care system running smoothly as the other professionals who work in our hospitals and facilities, Sigurdson said. Having the province declare a Health Care Support Workers Week will go a long way to recognizing the valuable contribution our members and other support workers make to health care.

The Canadian Union of Public Employees is Canadas largest union representing more than 485,000 women and men across the country. In Manitoba, CUPE represents 23,000 members in health care, education, municipalities, social services, utilities, libraries and emergency services.

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For more information, please contact:
Lorraine Sigurdson, CUPE Health Care Coordinator
Phone: (204) 942-0343 ext. 214