On July 24, 2018 with less than 24 hours’ notice, CUPE Local 5430 was called to a meeting with 3S Health, SAHO, Ministry of Health officials and other Union representatives.

At this meeting we were told that the Ministry of Health has provided $167 million for a “health care initiative” that will see the replacement of 82 systems province wide with a new suite of applications for supply chain, human resources and finance. They have named this initiative AIMS for Administrative Information Management System project. The initiative involves the Saskatchewan Health Authority, Saskatchewan Cancer Agency, eHealth, 3sHealth and the affiliate employers. The funding is directed toward the project “primarily” through the Saskatchewan Authority.

Yesterday you will have received some information from the Saskatchewan Health Authority about this initiative. We too, received this information just yesterday.

The announcement was short on details as to how this initiative would affect the work of our members post implementation. We also asked about this more than once. It is hard to imagine embarking on a project of this scope and cost without projections of how the work would be done differently and how staffing would be affected.

When pressed, the Employer’s spokesperson indicated that they will have a better idea in the fifth month of the implementation of this project.  However, when asked, the Employer could not guarantee that this move would not result in some form of outsourcing or possibly replacement of our workers. We are committed to ensuring that our collective agreement is respected and that our member’s rights are protected.

The implementation process will take a total of 21 months with a start date of October 1, 2018. The design phase is to take place within the first four months with an approximate requirement of 40 positions. It was communicated that there will be 75 full-time roles needed that will be on a temporary basis commencing at different stages of the project. We were told that a 10-year software (cloud based) agreement is in place which is to be broken up into two five-year terms with an option to renew.

The Employer has referenced what they call a “people plan”, which essentially will allow all employees from all of the affiliated organizations (ie. SHA, eHealth, 3sHealth, Cancer Agency and affiliates) to become a resource pool for filling these positions. They have stated that in order to ensure operations are maintained, the selection of employees into these ‘roles’ would be initiated through an Expression of Interest model, whereby they are evaluated on the right skillsets and whether they meet the requirements of the various different roles, namely within supply chain, human resources and finance areas.

The Employer had also communicated that those who are selected for these ‘roles’ within the AIMS Project will have their home positions backfilled to which we understand that the Ministry of Health has already approved funding for. Our understanding is that these positions are NOT a part of the JJEMC process and essentially will be in an Out-of-Scope capacity with no increase or promotion in salary.

CUPE views this as a way for the Employer to create positions within the SHA without having to adhere to the collective agreements that have been in place for years, agreements that have protected the rights and wellbeing of Unionized workers.

CUPE will continue to work towards ensuring that our members and your work are protected by the collective agreement. As we receive more information, we will update the membership.

Please contact your regional office if you have questions or concerns.