LETHBRIDGE, AB – Finance Minister Travis Toews is once again urging a swift resolution to contract talks between the United Nurses of Alberta (UNA) and Alberta Health Services (AHS).
His comments come as nurses walk off the job across Alberta on Wednesday (Aug. 11) to host information pickets at more than 25 health care facilities. Nurses are stationed outside Lethbridge’s Chinook Regional Hospital until 1 p.m.
AHS has proposed wage cuts of up to five-percent and other rollbacks to the UNA collective agreement, but the union says nurses are exhausted after dealing with COVID-19 for 18 months and they deserve better.
Toews argues that “Alberta spends more money per person on health care than other large provinces”, and more needs to be done to find efficiencies in the public sector if the province is going to restore its fiscal health.
He says a number of previous agreements between the UNA and AHS have been reached through mediation, so he’s encouraging both sides to work together again to strike a deal as soon as possible.