Today, workers in Ontario celebrate a significant victory as the Ontario Court of Appeal has rejected the Ontario government’s appeal against the Ontario Superior Court’s ruling that Bill 124 is unconstitutional.
Bill 124, enacted by the Ontario Government in 2020, implemented a 1% wage cap on all public sector workers that impacted more than 18,155 Unifor members in hospitals, non-profit long-term care homes, paramedic services, social services, and in education.
Unifor, along with over 40 other unions and associations, filed a Notice of Application on August 28, 2020, with the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, which deemed the legislation unconstitutional.
The Ontario government appealed the ruling by Ontario Superior Court of Justice. Monday the appeals court reaffirmed the unconstitutionality of the bill.
This ruling is a victory for fair and free collective bargaining, for the right to a union, and for every Unifor member and unionized worker across Canada. Having a union matters.
Unifor’s strength is in its unity and our belief in justice and the rights of workers. This is not just a win; it’s a celebration of the collective solidarity that drives us. Together with our coalition partners, we’ve shown what solidarity can achieve.
I want to extend my deepest gratitude to our health care members and locals whose bravery in sharing their experiences played a pivotal role in our challenge to Bill 124.
Additionally, my thanks to many members of our team at Unifor, including (but not limited to): Samia Hashi, Kelly-Anne Orr, Kellee Janzen, Katha Fortier, Dijana Simonovic, Jenna Meguid, Kaylie Tiessen and Mike Yam. As well as all the dedicated individuals within our leadership and staff whose relentless commitment has been instrumental in securing this victory.
Again, I congratulate each one of you for standing together in this fight. Your support and collective action have made all the difference. Let’s carry this victory forward and continue our work for a fairer and more equitable future for all.
In celebration of Personal Support Worker Day on May 19, 2023 Unifor salutes the contributions of the thousands of Unifor members who work as Personal Support Workers (PSWs) in Ontario.
We are especially proud to recognize PSW’s who were on the front lines putting themselves in danger ever day by providing care for others during the pandemic.
In many health care facilities, PSW’s have been the backbone, providing care throughout the pandemic. Personal Support Workers are an essential part of the healthcare team, providing vital care and support to individuals in need. They play a critical role in ensuring that patients and residents receive the best possible care, whether it be in a long-term care facility, retirement home, hospital, or in the community. PSWs are skilled professionals who work tirelessly to improve the quality of life for their patients. They provide assistance with daily activities such as bathing, dressing, and eating, as well as emotional support and companionship. Their dedication and compassion towards patients and families are truly admirable, and their contributions are often unrecognized and undervalued.
As we celebrate PSW Day in Ontario, we also acknowledge the challenges and difficulties that PSWs face daily. The COVID-19 pandemic brought to light the importance of their work and the risks they face on the front lines. The sacrifices they have made to ensure the safety and wellbeing of their patients during these unprecedented times deserve our utmost gratitude.
For many years, Unifor has specifically called on the Ontario government to address the issues facing PSWs. The union has long advocated for a regulatory minimum of four hours care per patient as the standard of care in long-term care homes.
In 2021, the Ontario provincial government passed legislation to establish an average of four hours of direct care for long-term care residents by 2024-2025. The union continues to call on provincial governments that 4 hours of care should be applied and achieved by each individual facility. It must be vigorously measured through public reporting and proper enforcement, as the health and safety of residents and workers are on the line.
We now know that residents in long-term care homes died as a result of the conditions of care related to chronic underfunding and not solely to COVID-19, with even higher deaths of residents in for-profit facilities. It is inhumane not to provide the resources needed to provide care with respect and dignity for our seniors and to allow corporations to put profits ahead of people.
The union will continue to call on governments and employers to provide adequate personal protective equipment, maintain sufficient staffing levels and give fair compensation for long-term care workers across the country.
Share your appreciation by PSW’s – download the sharable here.
Read this statement on our webiste here.
As we celebrate Nurses Week 2023, we take a moment to recognize and appreciate the hard work, dedication, and sacrifice of nurses across Canada.
Unifor represents 4,000 Registered or Licensed Practical Nurses (RPNs/LPNs) and Registered Nurses (RN) who work in hospitals, private and municipal long-term care homes.
Now, more than ever, we have come to realize the critical role that nurses play in keeping our communities healthy and safe.
Nurses are at the frontlines of our healthcare system, providing vital care to patients in hospitals, long-term care homes, and clinics. They work tirelessly, often sacrificing their own well-being to care for others. They are the ones who provide comfort and support to patients and their families during some of the most challenging times in their lives.
Nurses are vital to our healthcare system, but they are also undervalued and overworked. They face long hours, stressful working conditions, and often inadequate resources.
The COVID-19 pandemic has only highlighted these challenges and put a spotlight on the urgent need to address them.
Conservative governments are constantly finding new ways to attack the public system and move to privatize our health care system. From Premier Danielle Smith’s open comments on user premiums to Premier Doug Ford’s wage restricting Bill 124 Unifor continues to work with labour unions and health care coalitions to fight back.
Our collective action resulted in a ruling by the Ontario Superior Court of Justice that Premier Ford’s Bill 124 unduly infringes on workers’ rights. This victory was hard-won, meanwhile further demonstrating the power that we have as union activists.
With this win behind us, there is much more work to be done.
The fight to keep our healthcare sector public will be a focal point for the union in the coming year. Rallies, town halls, and community actions are being organized throughout the country.
As a union we recognize the incredible contributions of nurses and stand in solidarity with them. We are committed to fighting for better working conditions, fair wages, and improved access to resources, training, and support for nurses. We know that investing in nurses is essential to the health and well-being of our communities across the country.
As we celebrate Nurses Week 2023, let us all take a moment to thank the nurses in our lives and to reflect on how we can support and advocate for them.
Together, we can create a better, more equitable healthcare system for everyone.
Notice for all Unifor Local 27 RPNs
It’s my pleasure to let you know that the Executive Board of Local 27 has approved a plan to reimburse Local 27 RPNs 10% off their membership into WeRPN (formerly RPNAO, Registered Practical Nurses Association of Ontario). This new initiative will begin with the new membership year for WeRPN that starts in July 2020.
We think this is an important initiative and encourage all RPNs to visit the WeRPN website at www.werpn.com to look at what the membership has to offer nurses. This protection is available if you are involved with disputes or claims with CNO and require advise and representation which your employer or union may not be able to provide directly. One of the most important components of the Membership includes the professional liability protection insurance, with a $1,000,000 limit for each loss per nurse and $3,000,000 limit for all losses per year per nurse. It provides protection against malpractice claims arising from real or alleged errors or omissions, including negligence. As a member you are covered for the following: subpoenaed to appear before a legally constituted tribunal in Ontario; subpoenaed to appear as a witness in matters arising out of the Regulated Health Professional Act (1991) and any amending or superseding legislation; subpoenaed to appear as a witness in an incident relating to his/her profession of nursing; received a letter of complaint from the College of Nurses of Ontario as a result of a complaint, laid under Regulated Health Professions Act (1991) and any amending or superseding Legislation.
Please email Jerry Skinner (email address below) to apply for your WeRPN 10% before tax rebate. Be sure to include your name, mailing address , employer , local Union # ,CNO# and a copy of your membership receipt / transaction details. Your rebate will be sent to you by mail, so please allow some time for processing – Your patience is much appreciated. Please note, this offer is only available to Unifor Local 27 RPNs.
President Local 27
please send all required info & file to the following email address – email@example.com
Ontario Health Coalition
Ontario is facing an unprecedented staffing crisis in our hospitals, in our long-term care and in our home care.
The Ford government has chosen not to take the measures that are necessary to address the staffing crisis in our public hospitals,even though for-profit privatization will make the staffing crisis worse.
But they have backtracked when faced with enough public pressure. If we all work together, we can ensure that they cannot do this.
Watch & share our new video below
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Read The Decision Here https://goldblattpartners.com/wp-content/uploads/Bill-124-Decision.pdf
TORONTO – In a historic moment, Ontario’s five largest health care unions have joined forces, issuing an SOS appeal to Premier Doug Ford and Health Minister Sylvia Jones: your plan is failing – take action and adopt our solutions to stabilize Ontario’s crashing health care system today.
The PC “plan” is failing miserably. The unions want the Premier to discuss with them a meaningful, cohesive, and aggressive staff retention strategy. With staff turnover running at almost 15%, health care has been destabilized under Doug Ford’s watch. The current PC approach is pushing staff out and leaving health care on the brink. Ontario hospitals need to hire 47,000 staff just to deal with turnover and the care needs of an ageing and growing population.
At a news conference Thursday, the unions warned that after several years of neglect, underfunding, and failure to improve staffing levels, the health system is now buckling under the weight of severe staff shortages, overcrowding, lack of surge capacity and the spread of COVID-19, a big and early surge in the flu and other respiratory illnesses. Entire emergency departments have closed, and pediatric ICUs remain above capacity province-wide causing families much distress that could be prevented with a real plan to retain skilled hospital staff. While frustrated, there are still hundreds of thousands of dedicated frontline health care staff who are working through this historic crisis. If the Premier fails to act immediately many more of those on the frontline will be broken by workload, exhaustion and by his government’s lack of response to their plight and increasing patient care needs, which can only be described as a failure of leadership, charge the unions.
In October, the five unions requested an urgent meeting with Premier Ford and Health Minister Jones to try to find a pathway to frontline-focused solutions. But after weeks with no response, the unions say that Doug Ford is openly ignoring frontline workers and patients, and actively pushing the public health care system to collapse, by doing as little as possible to sustain it.
With a province still in the grips of the pandemic and a staffing retention crisis, the joint union leaders called it unfathomable and cruel that Ford refuses to cough up one extra cent to protect patients, including vulnerable children in intensive care. Pointing to last week’s Fall Economic Statement, which saw no new funding for health care, the leaders noted that Ontario currently has a two billion dollar provincial budget surplus, and billions more in unspent contingency funds and additional revenues. Bringing Ontario from dead last in terms of hospital staffing to the Canadian average would cost $2 billion.
The five leaders expressed grave concern that Ford is using the crisis to drive his costly privatization agenda and warned that two-tier health delivery will make staffing shortages, wait times and patient outcomes even worse by competing for scarce staff and pulling them out of the public system, where wages have been cut.
Their message: American-style, for-profit health care is not the solution to Ontario’s health care crisis. Instead, Ford should be listening to frontline workers and their unions and focus on immediate solutions to retain the overworked staff who keep our health care system running.
The unions are calling on the Ford government to action the following solutions:
- Respect workers – scrap Bill 124 and allow collective bargaining to determine wage rates to stabilize staffing levels.
- Boost frontline staffing – provide responsive incentives to the current workforce, and return to work incentives for those who have left.
- Relieve administrative pressure – hire new hospital support staff.
- Invest in people, not profit – restrict the use of private health care staffing agencies.
- No privatization – commit to invest all new funding in public hospitals.
Michael Hurley, President Ontario Council of Hospital Unions (OCHU-CUPE):
“The Minister of Health says closing 80 ERs over the summer and now the huge pressures at pediatric hospitals are not crises but planned events. On the one hand who would plan such system failures? And on the other hand, we know that this government is using the current weakness of the public hospital system against it to privatize the backlog of surgeries and diagnostics. That the Minister has not tabled a plan to deal with the hospital staffing crisis is deeply troubling.
Angela Preocanin, RN, First Vice-President, Ontario Nurses’ Association (ONA):
“We want people to remember that they have a voice, they have power, and they can stand with those of us providing care to demand action and a real plan from this government. Letting pediatric and adult patients suffer as the government claims it has no money to restore staffing of our public healthcare system while sitting on billions of unspent healthcare funding dollars is obscene. People must demand government fund the care they need and deserve. We are asking the government to work with us on solutions – for the good of Ontarians now.”
JP Hornick, President, Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU/SEFPO):
“After years of political choices to underfund, understaff and overburden Ontario’s public health care system, patients, their families and workers across the entire arc of patient care are suffering the fallout, and they’re fed up. ICUs are closing, MRI and CT machines are closing and patient care is suffering – all because of short staffing. Frontline workers have solutions; we also know what our solidarity can accomplish – when workers, their unions, and the communities they are part of come together with a common goal and vision, we win. In the fight to save our public hospitals – and against American-style, for profit delivery – we simply won’t back down.”
Naureen Rizvi, Ontario Regional Director, Unifor:
“Ontarians continue to struggle through this pandemic with long wait times in emergency rooms, crowded hospitals and delays for surgeries and procedures. Meanwhile, health care workers are burned out and staffing shortages continue to plague our system. The health care system is on life support, yet this government is sitting on their hands with no intention to fix it. Instead, Ford’s plan is to let the system crumble and push for more private, for-profit providers to deliver services.”
CUPE/OCHU, ONA, OPSEU/SEFPO, SEIU Healthcare and Unifor are the unions representing more than 295,000 healthcare workers across Ontario.
Unifor's letter to the Premier and Deputy Premier on Ontario's healthcare and staffing crisis
Dear Premier Ford and Deputy Premier Jones,
On behalf of the hundreds of thousands of healthcare workers we represent in the province of Ontario, our five unions are requesting an urgent joint-meeting to discuss the ongoing healthcare and staffing crisis.
Our primary concern is the well-being of our dedicated members and the people for whom they provide care. However, developments in recent weeks signal operating conditions and patient outcomes are worsening, and likely to worsen still as the system confronts a critical hospital staffing shortage, rising cases of COVID-19 and the upcoming flu season. We have solutions to propose to the staffing crisis and would respectfully request the opportunity to raise those solutions with you directly.
Among other critical issues, unsafe staffing levels mean wait times continue to grow, and in this cost-of-living crisis, handing over the delivery of public healthcare to profit-driven corporations is creating significant anxiety for workers that patient outcomes will deteriorate while costs will soar. We’re asking to sit down with you both to discuss the government’s healthcare privatization plans.
Further, a meeting to discuss the crisis ahead of next month’s meeting of Canada’s healthcare ministers is also an opportunity to include voices from the frontline, so that tangible solutions, as well as cautions, can be brought forward.
We look forward to meeting with you to address the crisis, and discuss a pathway to a solution, together.
Michael Hurley President OCHU/CUPE
Sharleen Stewart President SEIU
Cathryn Hoy PresidentHealthcare Ontario Nurses’ Association
JP Hornick President OPSEU/SEFPO
Ontario Regional Director Unifor
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Unifor rpn working group meets with Health Minister christine Elliotte
To view meeting video follow the link below;
Local 27 Billboard Southdale & Wharncliffe Rds.
Unifor RPN Working Group Fairness for RPN's Campaign
It’s time to respect, protect, and pay Ontario’s RPNs. Registered Practical Nurses (RPNs) have stepped up throughout the COVID-19 pandemic in a big way. Yet, they have had to fight for proper health and safety protections in the workplace and have had their collective agreement rights superseded. The media has widely reported that the pandemic has only served to highlight an existing nursing shortage and the risk of an exodus of nurses due to burnout. Without real measures to improve working conditions and compensation, the health care system is at risk.
To read more and take action on the
Fairness for RPN’s campaign, please follow the link below;
In celebration of National Nurses week, UNIFOR Local 27 wants to recognize our RPNS who have been Frontline Heroes. RPNS are knowledgeable caring nurses, who advocate for quality health care. We would also like to recognize all of our health care workers, who have been dedicated to the wellness of patients in the London area, during the pandemic. Thank you to all of our HEALTH CARE HEROS. UNIFOR LOCAL 27
Happy Nurses Week 2021
to Listen to our Nurses week message on fm96 & cjbk 1290 , follow the link below
SEIU Healthcare, Unifor and CUPE unions representing 175,000healthcare workers across Ontario held a Virtual media conference to announce the launch of International Women’s Day actions with a clear message to Premier Ford: “Respect Us. Protect Us. Pay Us.”
To view the video , follow the link below.
Please click on the link below to sign the Ontario Health Coalition’s Save Our Seniors petition.
better care. safer work.
Nursing homes should be a safe place to live.
In a perfect world, this would go without saying. But in Ontario today, the ratios of staff to residents is simply too high to provide safe care with dignity.
Please visit CareTakesTime website for more info. Click button below.
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Check out the latest edition of the Pulse! The Pulse provides national, provincial and regional information on the work of Unifor members in the health care sector. The newsletter is a compilation of articles and updates provided by local union leadership, provincial health care councils and Unifor national representatives on bargaining, health and safety, community activism and other sector-based issues.