Coalition of Nova Scotia health care unions requests meeting with premier

    HALIFAX, Feb. 20 /CNW/ - A coalition of health care unions representing
32,000 health care workers in Nova Scotia has requested a meeting with Premier
Rodney MacDonald.
    In a letter sent to the premier today by Rick Clarke, president of the
Nova Scotia Federation of Labour, the unions are following up on a meeting
they held this week with senior staff in the Department of Health regarding
the Corpus Sanchez Report.
    Says Clarke, "The meeting with senior staff revolved around process and
participation, but we were also asked what it would take for the health care
unions to participate in 'meaningful consultations' on an integrated Health
Human Resources plan.
    "The representatives of the health care unions clearly stated that we are
not opposed to change in the health care system, but want to be legitimate
partners in that change. The fact that unions were not consulted at all as
part of the Corpus-Sanchez report did not exactly get us off on the right foot
in this regard," says Clarke.
    "One point that became very clear during these discussions was that there
are issues and questions that impact on the ability of the health care unions
to, in good conscience, participate in this process in an open and meaningful
way. These questions could not be answered by those present, so we are hoping
they can be fully addressed by the premier.
    "We would therefore request the opportunity to meet with you and the
Minister of Health, to continue this discussion on how or if the health care
unions are to be engaged in this process as legitimate partners," the letter

    The coalition consists of seven unions, including the NSGEU (Nova Scotia
Government and General Employees Union), CUPE (Canadian Union of Public
Employees), NSNU (Nova Scotia Nurses Union), CAW (Canadian Auto Workers
Union), IUOE (International Union of Operating Engineers), SEIU (Service
Employees International Union) and CUPW (Canadian Union of Postal Workers).

For further information:

For further information: Rick Clarke (NSFL), (902) 454-6735; Danny
Cavanagh, CUPE, (902) 957-0822; Joan Jessome, NSGEU, (902) 471-4566; Janet
Hazelton, NSNU,(902) 456-2084; Shauna Wilcox, CAW, 1-800-591-7523; Gerard
Higgins, SEIU(902) 455-1095; Dwayne Fitzgerald, IUOE (902) 539 5438; Fred
Furlong, CUPW, (902) 454-5812

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Canadian Union of Public Employees - Atlantic Region

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