Nov. 6 will mark the third annual Appreciation Day for community-based social service workers across Canada.
Ottawa (4 Nov. 2010) - The National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) made a commitment two years ago to raise the profile of workers in our communities who provide support for society's most vulnerable citizens by launching the Community Social Service Workers Appreciation Day.
Since the first Appreciation Day was observed in 2008, two provinces – Manitoba and Saskatchewan – have passed proclamations recognizing the occasion. As well, 87 communities across the country. Included are six provincial capitals and Ottawa, the nation’s capital.
The importance of communities recognizing the value of their local social services cannot be understated. However, there still remains the need for renewed federal and provincial funds earmarked for social services.
Social services make up an important part of Canada's social safety net. They are a part of a larger public service structure that creates a more equal society. But unlike health care or public education, community-based social services are often invisible.
Addictions counseling, women's centers, child, youth and family services, care of the disabled and the developmentally delayed — workers in all of these services struggle with shrinking resources to maintain the quality and accessibility of services for a growing clientele.
Unfortunately, billions of dollars in funding has been cut from this sector over the last 15 years.
This November, NUPGE encourages all Canadians to take time to tell their local, provincial and federal representative that these services are valued and should be adequately funded.
Visit our website dedicated to community-based social service workers. You'll find testimonials, videos and profiles of workers. The site also contains the latest news and research all year round. You can sign the petition to Prime Minister Stephen Harper urging immediate action to restore funding. Alternatively, download our colourful postcard to print and mail to the PM.
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
• Community Social Service Workers Care website