Health workers lost trust in Premier before Maui trip — year-end poll

Arrest just latest in series of ethical lapses, says HEU

Health care workers feel personally betrayed by B.C.’s premier and want him to resign for breaking election commitments, according to a year-end poll of health care workers commissioned by the Hospital Employees’ Union (CUPE).

Eighty-two per cent of union members feel like Gordon Campbell lied to them personally when his government passed legislation almost a year ago that effectively tore up their legally negotiated collective agreements.

And 87 per cent believe the premier misled British Columbians to get elected and should therefore resign.

“The premier’s arrest in Maui is only the most recent in a series of ethical lapses that began before the last election when he lied to health care workers by telling them he would not tear up their legally negotiated contracts,” says HEU secretary-business manager Chris Allnutt.

“That’s why health care workers feel personally betrayed by the Gordon Campbell. “At the end of the day, B.C. voters will determine the Premier’s fate,” adds Allnutt. “But if the B.C. Liberal government is serious about winning back the public’s trust, the starting point would be to respect legal contracts with union members.”

The poll also indicates an overwhelming lack of confidence in Campbell’s overall performance by union members. Only 3.7 per cent gave the Campbell government a good, very good or excellent rating while 78 per cent judged his performance to be poor.

The results are contained in a comprehensive McIntyre and Mustel telephone survey of 500 HEU members conducted during the first week of December, 2002.

The results are considered accurate to within 4.5 per cent, 19 times out of 20.

On Monday, HEU released other results from the poll which pointed to declining morale and economic pessimism among B.C. health care workers.