Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) - BC

Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) - BC

October 04, 2013 15:44 ET

Vancouver communities suffer under more health service cuts

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - Oct. 4, 2013) - Layoff notices issued this week by the Vancouver Coastal Health Authority will result in reduced health services for children and Vancouver's most vulnerable, says CUPE Local 15.

"Premier Christy Clark is slowly starving local health services," said CUPE 15 president Leanne Toderian. "These needless health service reductions will haunt our communities with long-term health care costs and greater social inequality.

"Christy Clark doesn't get it: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure," Toderian said.

The layoffs include professional nutritionists who specialize in children's dietary well-being, skilled community developers who service vulnerable populations, and therapists who were dedicated to the needs of those with mental health issues.

"Community health programs are not expendable. Service cuts like these harm individuals with health needs that can't be addressed elsewhere, including elderly, homeless, and immigrant populations," said CUPE BC president Mark Hancock. "The Liberals need to do the right thing, and direct the health authority to rescind these layoffs and provide the quality health care system they promised in the election."

For more than a decade the BC Liberal government has consistently cut corners with public health services. The frontline core services on which the public healthcare system was built have been scaled back in favour of non-clinical online and/or telephone options that don't offer the professional care that British Columbians expect and deserve.

The Canadian Union of Public Employees represents more than 1,100 health care workers in the community across BC.

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