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Dietary, housekeeping staff on the street by mid-April

Thirty-eight health workers at the Normanna Rest Home in Burnaby have received their layoff notices as the seniors’ residential care facility moves to contract out cook, dietary, and housekeeping jobs to private companies with low-waged, transient employees.

As a multi-level care facility, Normanna receives funding from the Fraser Health Authority. Its dedicated and experienced health workers are integral members of a team of caregivers who make the facility a comfortable, clean and safe home for 100 seniors.

“The loss of familiar and committed caregivers means a loss of continuity, familiarity and friendship to Normanna residents and their families,” says Chris Allnutt, the secretary-business manager of the Hospital Employees’ Union (CUPE) who represents the pink-slipped workers.

“By contracting out work that is currently being performed by a stable workforce of skilled and experienced workers to low-waged, private companies, Normanna is in danger of compromising the care of its residents,” he says.

The Liberal government’s passage of Bill 29 one year ago paved the way for contracting out of health support services in seniors’ long-term care facilities across the province.