Health care workers hold “day of political protest” Thursday

News release

MLA offices to be targeted in action designed to minimize impact on patients

Health care workers will participate in a day of political protest against legislation that tears up legal collective agreements and clears the way for hospital closures, health care privatization and massive lay-offs.

Calling it a “measured response” to the Campbell Liberals’ Bill 29, Hospital Employees’ Union secretary-business manager Chris Allnutt says that tomorrow’s protests will be designed to minimize their impact on care for patients, residents and clients. The protests will target Liberal MLAs’ offices.

“After the election, our union committed itself to work with this government to strengthen health care,” says Allnutt.

“In return, Campbell has given us the back of his hand — tearing up our contracts and clearing the way for hospital closures and an unprecedented round of health care privatization.

“Over the last nine days, thousands of our members have joined with their communities at dozens of rallies and protests that are sweeping the province like wildfire,” says Allnutt. “Tomorrow represents a new stage in our political protest against a government that has betrayed its commitments to respect collective agreements and protect health care.”

Allnutt says that the nature of the protest will vary from community to community but that in most cases actions will take place between the core hours of 10:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.

Where HEU members leave their workplace to take part in protests, the union is committed to providing staffing levels higher than those set by the essential services process.

“It’s time for the Campbell Liberals to take a long hard look at where they’re taking health care,” says Allnutt. “It’s time to repeal Bill 29 and engage in a genuine dialogue with all stakeholders on how to make health care better for British Columbians.”

-30- For more information, please contact Mike Old at 604-828-6771 For Chris Allnutt’s statement to the media Click Here