PEMBROKE, ON, July 18, 2014 /CNW/ - July 21st professional and support staff at Paramed Home Health Care are taking to the streets to ask the public to pressure their millionaire CEO to make them a wage offer that rises above the poverty level.
The nurses, home support staff and clerical workers are asking the public to join them outside of Paramed's Pembroke office for an hour to send a message to their employer.
"Without these dedicated workers there is no home care for many frail residents in Renfrew County," says Warren (Smokey) Thomas, president of the 130,000-member Ontario Public Service Employees Union.
Starting wage for a home support worker at Paramed is $12.88 an hour. For that they are expected to provide their own vehicle to shuttle between appointments. On the other end of the scale Extendicare CEO Timonthy Lukenda earned $1.129 million in compensation for 2012 according to Business Week. Extendicare is the parent company that owns Paramed. Much of Lukenda's salary would come from revenue paid by the Ontario government towards nursing home care and home support.
The 140 staff that provide home care and support services in Renfrew County say they are being pushed towards a strike position by their employer.
If that happens many local residents would be left without care critical to keep them in their homes.
"It's a David versus Goliath struggle," says Thomas, "between one of Canada's largest private for-profit health care corporations and this small group of workers in Renfrew County. We are challenging the community to rise to the occasion and show their support."
No strike date has been set.
The public is encouraged to join the workers from 11 am – 2 pm outside the Pembroke Paramed office, 557 Pembroke St. E.
SOURCE: Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU)
For further information: contact Nelson Ross Laguna at 1-800-268-7376 ext 5445 or 613-324-4174.