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(Vancouver) Any attempt by the BC Liberal government to enact legislation that breaks negotiated agreements with the workers who care for the ill, elderly and disabled in community care – will be met with a firmly coordinated response, the Canadian Union of Public Employees says.

It will not be business as usual in this province, said Barry ONeill, president of CUPE BC, if Gordon Campbell and his government decide not to respect the contracts that ensure quality services for community care clients and equitable working conditions for their caregivers.

People in community care are among the most marginalized and vulnerable in our society. And the women and men who care for these clients are already underpaid for the difficult services they are committed to providing on a daily basis.

This government appears ready to drag people in community care out of their group homes and throw them into institutions. It seems ready to show equal disregard for the workers who care for them, ONeill said.

Tearing up contracts will tear apart our communities. Who can count on the word of a government that breaks democratically negotiated agreements? How will anybody, including business people, ever trust this government to keep its promises?

Honesty, respect and dialogue, not acts of betrayal, are the key to building strong communities, ONeill said. CUPE members, who form the largest union in B.C., add their voices to the growing chorus of citizens who are telling this government to stop its destructive attacks on public services.


Contact: Barry ONeill, CUPE BC president (604) 916-8444Teresa Marshall, communications representative
(604) 291-1940 or (604) 313-6103