Kathy MacKinnon from Local 7800 in Hamilton received this year’s CUPE Ontario Health and Safety Award.
For 25 years, Sister Kathy has served on local and joint health and safety committees, representing more than 3800 members at six hospitals and five satellite sites in Hamilton Health Sciences.
Asbestos is a key issue for Sister Kathy and members in HHS, which has more than 300 acres of asbestos in its buildings. She spent years fighting the employer, resulting two years ago in charges and fines totalling $19,000.
Last September, she came in from vacation because the employer was not prepared to adequately protect workers dealing with patients with Ebola-like symptoms.