For Immediate Release – March 11, 2015
Saskatoon – The leaders and members of SEIU-West were distressed by the allegations centred on their union in the CTV news story regarding empty beds at Rose Villa, a long-term care facility, in Rosetown, Saskatchewan.
“Nothing could be further from reality than the comment made by Ms. Minish in the story,” said Barbara Cape, President of SEIU-West. “She claimed that the ‘administration is restricted and controlled by the Union’ at Rose Villa. The truth is that SEIU-West has been both collaborative and supportive of the efforts to fill vacant staff positions so as to extend operations to full capacity. One of our unit leaders from Rose Villa, Colleen Denniss, recently participated in career fairs in Moose Jaw, Regina and Saskatoon where she actively made a pitch for graduates to consider recruitment in this community, among others. SEIU-West sponsored this attendance.”
Shelly Banks, Vice-President of SEIU-West and a full-time Continuing Care Assistant (CCA) at Rose Villa, takes exception to the story and added: “It is regrettable that the general public does not know the many reasons for our current dilemma. Our members are giving up vacation time and work crushing overtime hours in order to fill vacant shifts. It is an anomaly when we come to work and have full baseline staffing; working short has become the norm.”
“Let’s be clear, this is not what our union wants at all,” continued Banks. “We welcome full-time jobs and we remind the employer when jobs remain un-posted. The problems of Rose Villa cannot be blamed on the very people who are struggling each day to meet the care needs of the 48 residents who currently live at our facility.”
“We agree that Rose Villa is challenged with retention and recruitment issues. While we have actively promoted timely posting and filling of vacancies at this facility, there is a shortage of available candidates for these positions here and elsewhere in the province,” added Cape. “We share the frustration of not having all the beds open and we want the shortage of care providers addressed. However, we must all realize that it is irresponsible and unsafe to open beds when we have insufficient hands-on care providers to deliver the quality, compassionate and timely care our residents deserve.”
SEIU-West represents more than 13,000 working people in the province of Saskatchewan. They include members who work in health care, education, municipalities, community-based organizations, retirement homes and other sectors. They are joined by one colour, purple and one union, SEIU-West and they want you to note that purple works in our community! Visit www.PurpleWorks.ca to find out more about the members of SEIU-West who work for the people of Saskatchewan.
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For more information, contact:
Christine Miller, Communications Coordinator
Phone: 306-652-1011 ext. 8733
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