April 11, 2017 - Dear CUPE Health Care Member:

On March 28, 2017, the provincial government introduced Bill 53 – The Provincial Health Authority Act and Bill 54 – The Provincial Health Authority Consequential Amendment Act, 2017 in the Saskatchewan Legislature.

Your CUPE Health Care Council is pleased that Bill 53 makes clear that agreements, including collective agreements, with existing health regions will continue to apply to the provincial health authority (PHA). Also, any “claim, cause of action or proceeding” brought against an existing regional health authority, such as a grievance, will continue against the PHA.

In many ways, the legislation is similar to the existing legislation – The Regional Health Services Act. However, Bill 53 proposes to give the PHA the ability to transfer employees from the provincial health authority to a “health care organization” or the cancer agency and cause them to become employees of those organizations.

Your CUPE Health Care Council is very concerned that this provision could enable the province to transfer CUPE members to 3sHealth or to a private health care organization. We will be seeking clarification and will ensure that our members’ collective agreement rights are protected.

Bills 53 and 54 do not clarify how the transition to a single provincial health authority will impact current bargaining units and union representation. The legislation also does not identify how many service integration areas will be established or what their boundaries will look like.

Your CUPE Health Care Council, along with our provider coalition partners, will be meeting with the Ministry of Health on April 12, 2017 to seek further clarification and to urge the provincial government to consider a bargaining council structure to help stabilize labour relations and recognize existing union jurisdictions within the new provincial health region.

CUPE will continue to keep you updated with further developments as they become available. Learn more at www.cupesaskhcc.ca.

In Solidarity,

Your Health Care Council Executive

Gordon Campbell, Pearl Blommaert, Sandra Seitz, Jim Carr, Scott McDonald, Helen Sawatsky, Donna Krawetz, Brian Manegre, and Wanda Edwards