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HAMILTON, Ont. – Frontline developmental service workers and community supporters in the Hamilton area have been calling on Premier Dalton McGuinty and Finance Minister Dwight Duncan to keep their government’s funding promise to persons with developmental disabilities.

“In their 2007 budget, the Liberal government committed four years of increased funding to developmental services,” said Jim Beattie, president of CUPE 3943, who has worked 21 years on the frontline in developmental services. “With McGuinty warning that not all commitments may be kept, we want him to know that this is not the time to be hitting some of the most vulnerable members of our community with another setback.”

Hard times are nothing new to thousands of individuals with a developmental disability and their families, added Beattie. They welcomed the four-year funding commitment after decades of underfunding that saw thousands of people lingering on waiting lists for support while others experienced the stress and setbacks that come with high staff turnover.

“The issues of long waiting lists and staff recruitment and retention are just beginning to be addressed with the new funding,” he said. “Consistent, quality supports mean that individuals and their families are able to expand the boundaries of their abilities, to live active, visible lives – and even work – in our communities.”

Beattie was joined at a news conference today other frontline workers from Community Living Hamilton and by Don Fraser, president of the Hamilton & District Labour Council. Together, they are encouraging community members to send a message to the Premier and finance minister.

Supporters can visit to fill out an email form and automatically send a message.


For more information, contact:

Jim Beattie, President, CUPE 3943      905-928-0030
Pat Daley, CUPE Communications      416-616-6142