The government plans to offload government services to an arm’s-length health authority. This devolution could mean the migration of entire departments; payroll employees, administrative support, child support staff, all related elements of social services, home support workers, nursing home attendants, paramedics and yes, all nurses employed by the Yukon government. The plan will most likely include the merger of all staff from Yukon hospitals and community health centres. It could affect fewer than five hundred people or it could impact greater than a thousand members – we just don’t know. Apparently, neither does the Employer. The employer is also unable to provide any certainty when it comes to timelines for the implementation of this plan. Changes could come as soon as a few months from now or could take a year or more to begin. Again, we just don’t know.
We are fighting to protect your benefits, pensions, and working conditions. We’re fighting for everyone who will be transferred to the health authority, and we are fighting for members’ right to choose whether they stay or go. We are also fighting to keep provisions intact for members who will or choose to remain employed by the Yukon government following a devolution.
We expect the creation and implementation of a new health authority to have far-reaching impacts on Yukoners and our members, whether or not their positions are devolved.
There is no reason to believe that creating a new health authority will be the quick fix that changes the troubling trend of understaffing and overwork that so many of you face every day on the job. A new health authority is not a magic bullet that will miraculously result in better services or ensure more successful outcomes.
We are working to build in protections for members before the transfer; we don’t intend to wait until after the damage has been done.