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January 20, 2010

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Good news that LPNs stay united in HEU

CUPE BC applauds the solidarity of LPNs who have chosen to stay with the Hospital Employees’ Union.

Commenting on the January 18 announcement that the BC Nurses’ Union leadership failed to meet sign up targets necessary to represent LPNs, CUPE BC president Barry O’Neill said that the Labour Board should dismiss the BCNU raid applications.

“This has been a colossal waste of time and resources. It has created divisions among health care workers in a bargaining year. And it has undermined solidarity and trust within the labour movement,” said O’Neill. “I have enormous respect for the work that nurses do. It is the BCNU leadership that will wear the responsibility for all of this and rightfully so.”

O’Neill said that it is clear that LPNs have decided that their interests as professional nurses are best represented as a united, independent voice within HEU.

He echoed the sentiments of HEU secretary-business manager Judy Darcy and thanked the thousands of CUPE and HEU members from other classifications who reached out to LPNs.

“As I have said in the past, nurses in B.C. have been and will continue to be critical to the good health of British Columbians.”

“CUPE members have many connections with members of the BCNU and we will continue to reach out to those members to help rebuild a strong front for public health care and solidarity of health care workers.”

View the letter that CUPE BC wrote to the BCNU in June 2009.

Barry O’Neill is president of the Canadian Union of Public Employees, British Columbia division.