March is Community Social Services Awareness Month

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Every B.C. community depends on community social services workers to provide programs and supports to some of our most vulnerable citizens.

In cities and towns across the province, community social services workers staff group homes and vocational programs for people with developmental disabilities, counsel and support immigrant families, work in child care centres and in transition houses for victims of violence, support people dealing with substance abuse issues, assist First Nations families, and provide a wide range of women’s services.

And yet, this sector continues to suffer from critical funding shortfalls that impact the availability of services for people who need them most, and in recent years have caused a serious staff retention and recruitment problem.

Throughout the month of March, HEU members working in community social services are joining with their union sisters and brothers throughout the sector to raise public awareness about the important role these services play in the lives of their clients and their communities.

As part of this annual campaign, several municipal councils have declared March as Community Social Services Awareness Month.

A variety of community outreach events are underway, and in Victoria, HEU members have organized the second annual Walk for Community Social Services, which will take place on Saturday, March 27.

If you’d like to know how to get involved, contact your union steward, servicing representative or local executive members. And you can learn more at the Community Social Services Matter campaign website.