United Nurses of Alberta acknowledges the announcement today by Alberta Premier Jason Kenney of a $1,200 pandemic wage supplement for designated front-line workers including nurses will have positive impacts.
While UNA members appreciate the additional financial support, however, UNA is concerned the model chosen by the Alberta government to use federal and provincial funds to recognize the additional toll of the COVID-19 pandemic on front-line workers will arbitrarily leave many who deserve such support behind.
In addition, while nurses will consider this a good start, what they really want from Alberta’s government is a commitment to drop plans to lay off hundreds of nurses and demand more than 200 rollbacks once the pandemic is over.
UNA will be monitoring the program carefully to ensure that funds are passed on by employers to the workers for which they have been designated, as Premier Kenney promised today.
UNA reminds the government that additional initiatives are essential to eliminating COVID-19 and stimulating Alberta’s economy, key among them paid sick time for all workers regardless of their occupation or whether they are in the public or private sector.
UNA encourages members who experience problems receiving the supplement or have other concerns should contact their Local Executive or the UNA Provincial Office.