"The MGEU will make sure that what they’ve said this past Tuesday will continue to hold true over the next few years.” - Lois Wales, MGEU President.
Winnipeg (26 April 2012) - On the heels of the Manitoba budget, Manitoba Government and General Employees' Union (MGEU/NUPGE) members are wondering how the announcements will impact their jobs.
As MGEU President Lois Wales said earlier this week, one of the main concerns in this budget is the decrease in spending by approximately $128 million.
“Those savings need to come from somewhere,” said Wales. “Our fear is that we’re going to see what we’ve seen in the past: not filling job vacancies when they arise and not replacing workers when they retire.”
The other significant announcements that will affect MGEU/NUPGE members will be the merger of Regional Health Authorities (RHA), moving from 11 to five RHAs and the merger between Manitoba Lotteries and the Manitoba Liquor Commission into one crown corporation.
There are few details already known about the reorganization. The minister of finance has already stated there will be no job losses for front line employees as these administrative efficiencies are made. A new labour management committee is being created to ensure a smooth transition which will include a staff representation from MGEU/NUPGE.
The new crown corporation will be called the Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries Corporation.
A new act for the Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries Corporation (MLLC) will be created and a professional consulting firm will be hired to review the inner workings of both organizations and assist in the amalgamation. Until the recommendations on an amalgamation plan are complete, both entities will continue to operate as they currently do.
A new Manitoba Gaming and Liquor Control Commission will also be created which will encorporate members who currently work in liquor regulation. Changes will also be made to the Gaming Control Act to incorporate liquor control into the Act.
Once the consulting firm completes its recommendations, the process of amalgamating will likely take almost a year to conclude.
With regard to the reduction in RHAs, government documents say that “by merging RHAs, the government expects to eliminate 30 to 35 executive positions and more than half of the RHA boards, directing more money into supporting Manitoba’s hospitals, QuickCare Clinics and access centres.”
“This is what they have said and we will hold them to it, if needed,” says Wales. “Their indications to us are that no MGEU members will lose their jobs as a result of these mergers. The MGEU will make sure that what they’ve said this past Tuesday will continue to hold true over the next few years.”
The first RHA mergers could be formalized in the next few weeks, with all of the RHAs formally merged by the fall 2012.
The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) is one of Canada's largest labour organizations with over 340,000 members. Our mission is to improve the lives of working families and to build a stronger Canada by ensuring our common wealth is used for the common good. NUPGE