GRAVENHURST, ON – Area long-term care staff, who have for many years openly advocated for increased care levels for residents, are taking the rare step of going public with a workplace-related issue that affects them directly – their own outstanding pay.

The 160 front-line staff at Sienna Senior Living in Gravenhurst are owed almost two years of back pay on a wage increase of 1.4 per cent. Sienna Senior Living collectively owes them tens of thousands of dollars and, individually, between $500 to $1,000 each. The back pay, retroactive to January 1, 2017, was awarded by an arbitrator in November 2018.

On Wednesday, October 2, 2019, from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., the personal support workers, registered practical nurses, housekeeping, dietary, and other care staff, will be outside Sienna Senior Living at 200 Kelly Drive, holding an information picket to inform residents’ families about the backpay issue which, for staff, is adding to the already challenging working conditions at the home.

Ontario has the fewest staff working in long-term care of any province in Canada. “And our home is no exception, we are often short-staffed. But we do our best to provide residents with the most care and attention we can, under stressful situations, where there just is not enough staff.

“For our employer to not pay us the money we are owed is, for us, incredibly disrespectful and demeaning. It has hurt care staff morale in a significant way,” says Sherry MacDonald, the president of Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) 2481.

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For more information, please contact:

Stella Yeadon, CUPE Communications, 416-559-9300, [email protected]

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