BCGEU urges provincial government to restore funding to much needed social programs.
Vancouver (11 Oct. 2011) - In its submission today to the Select Standing Committee on Finance and Government Services, the B.C. Government and Services Employees' Union (BCGEU/NUPGE) urged the B.C. Government to reverse the cuts to resource ministries in order to maximize revenues and provide support to social programs, which are facing increasing demands as a result of current economic uncertainty and demographic changes.
The union, which represents 65,000 workers in government, health, community social services and other sectors, noted the province’s future depends on present budget decisions.
BCGEU President Darryl Walker presented the brief to the committee. He asked members to adopt the following:
- Provide funding to clear backlogs in service requests in B.C.’s resource ministries. These ministries play a key role in driving economic growth;
- Provide adequate funding for social programs. Demand for these services is rising due to economic uncertainty and demographic changes;
- Drop the ‘net zero’ mandate on public service bargaining. This will help to address recruitment and retention problems; and
- Consider adopting new revenue options aimed at funding badly needed services and addressing the growing wage disparity in B.C.
“Immediate action is required to ensure the fulfillment of a long-term vision of healthy families, strong communities and a green economy in B.C.," Walker said.