Macdonald Youth Services members strike, demand new contract from province
WINNIPEG — A crisis team that works with at risk youth in Winnipeg have walked off the job on Tuesday.
More than two dozen crisis employees with the Crisis Stabilization Unit of Macdonald Youth Services are set to strike, stating they have been without a contract for two years.
A deal with the previous government died when an election was called, according to Manitoba Government Employees Union (MGEU) President, Michelle Gawronsky.
Gawronsky said the Pallister government asked them “to be patient” while they transitioned into office.
The union president said MGEU has since made a number of phone calls, sent a formal letter to the Minister and held an information picket on July 12. After no response was given by the province, MGEU members “have been left with no other option than to strike,” according to an MGEU press release.
The Mobile Crisis team at Macdonald Youth Services made nearly 1,500 visits to families and young people with at-risk, self-harm and mental health issues in the past year.
A Manitoba Government spokesperson responded to the strike on Tuesday afternoon and said the previous NDP government is to blame.
“Regrettably, the former government interfered in labout negotiations. This created uncertainty and false expectation on broader funding commitments that are unsustainable for government as a whole,” the statement read.
Employees have begun picketing outside the Rice Building on Portage Avenue.
On the Macdonald Youth Services Facebook page, there is a list of the reduced services to the community.
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