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Chapter Chair

Bev Muendel-Atherstone
[email protected]

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We were so sorry to hear about the passing of Michael Cormican. He was a dedicated champion for our public health care system, including in his role as the long-standing Chair of Friends of Medicare's Lethbridge Chapter.

October 24, 2022 

Members of Alberta’s major health-care unions are joining together to demand that the government of Alberta develop a plan to deal with the crisis in health care. 

EDMONTON – Following the swearing-in of Premier Smith’s cabinet Alberta’s health-care unions are coming together to advocate that the government take steps to fully address the staffing crisis in health  care.  

Leaders of the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees (AUPE), the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), the Health Sciences Association of Alberta (HSAA) and the United Nurses of Alberta (UNA)  along with Friends of Medicare (FOM) are urging the newly announced cabinet to deliver a  comprehensive plan to fix the health-care system which has been thrown into chaos by short-staffing.

This guest column appeared in the Medicine Hat News on October 13.

Friends of Medicare to participate in events in five cities calling on the provincial government to put people before profit


Solidarity with Striking University of Lethbridge Faculty

Friends of Medicare stands in solidarity with University of Lethbridge Faculty Association members who are now on strike

On August 31, 2020—a day marking both International Overdose Awareness Day and the closure of North America's busiest supervised consumption site—over 200 harm reduction supporters and advocates signed an open letter to the Alberta government to denounce the decision to cut all funding to and close Lethbridge’s SCS, and urge them to immediately reverse the decision and reinstate appropriate funding and support new leadership to scale up SCS in Lethbridge.

Read that letter in it's entirety here:

If you or your organization would like to add your names as signatories to this open letter, please email [email protected].

Original Sent: July 16, 2020
To:  Jason Luan Minister, Tyler Shandro
Associate Minister of Mental Health and Addictions, Minister of Health
CC: Premier Jason Kenney
Premier of Alberta

Open Letter: Defunding Lethbridge ARCHES SCS

FOM welcomes Lethbridge City Council’s common-sense vote on continued provincial funding for SCS

On Monday, August 19, Lethbridge city council voted on a motion to request the provincial government halt funding to the city’s supervised consumption site, subject to the findings of the government’s forthcoming “socioeconomic” review. The motion, introduced by Councillor Blaine Hyggen, was defeated Monday evening by a vote of 6-3.  

“Supervised consumption services are an integral part of a harm reduction strategy — they connect vulnerable Albertans to essential services that will ultimately give them a path to healthier lives,” said Sandra Azocar, executive director of Friends of Medicare. “We’re glad to see that Lethbridge city council had the common sense to vote down a motion that would have shown a callous disregard for the lives of vulnerable Albertans.”