News

  • Seniors Advocate Act is much-needed move towards improving seniors’ care in Alberta

    April 20, 2021
    EDMONTON

    Seniors Advocate Act is much-needed move towards improving seniors’ care in Alberta

    Today the Standing Committee on Private Bills and Private Members' Public Bills deliberated Bill 215: the Seniors Advocate Act, introduced by MLA Lori Sigurdson, critic for Seniors and Housing. An independent seniors advocate, like that in British Columbia, would serve as an independent officer of the legislature to help seniors navigate services, provide policy recommendations to the government, and conduct reviews on service providers to ensure seniors’ needs are met. 
     
  • Government continues to exploit pandemic surgery backlog to expand role of private care

    EDMONTON
    April 14, 2021

    Government continues to exploit pandemic surgery backlog to expand role of private care

    Yesterday, Alberta Health Services released a Request for Proposals (RFP) for ophthalmology chartered surgical facilities. The RFP is set to close mid-May 2021, and a contract will likely be awarded in fall 2021. While Albertans are trepidatiously looking towards the light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel, this government is barreling forward with their agenda of privatizing the very public health care system that we have all relied on throughout this pandemic.

  • Health Minister's recognition of National Medical Laboratory Week falls flat

    EDMONTON
    April 12, 2021

    Health Minister's recognition of National Medical Laboratory Week falls flat

    On a Sunday afternoon, Health Minister Tyler Shandro released a statement in recognition of National Laboratory Week. In his statement, he highlighted the role that medical laboratory professionals have played during this pandemic as an integral part of the province’s COVID-19 response. He encouraged Albertans to “reach out and thank a medical laboratory professional for their untold contributions in building a strong health system." But despite these empty platitudes, the minister and this government continue to move forward with the privatization of our lab services. 

  • The UCP government pays $3M to high priced consultants to repackage and force their privatization agenda

    March 26, 2021
    EDMONTON

    The UCP government pays $3M to high priced consultants to repackage and force their privatization agenda

    In July 2020, the UCP passed Bill 30: The Health Statutes Amendment Act, provincial legislation that proposes to cut approval times required for private surgical facilities. Shortly after, the government announced their intention to establish a "Health Contracting Secretariat," to build the health care delivery market and reduce barriers to market entry for larger corporate players.
  • Advocates representing 1M+ Canadians call for national standards to improve quality, accountability & take profit out of LTC

    March 22, 2021 

    Advocates representing more than 1 million Canadians call for national standards to improve quality, accountability and take profit out of long-term care

    Edmonton/Across Canada – Today, advocates representing more than a million Canadians came together to demand that the federal government and provinces work together to establish national standards for long-term residential care. The groups released a legal opinion setting out a proposal for a commitment from the federal government to ongoing funding for long-term care with clear criteria requiring the provinces to improve quality, accountability and take profit out of seniors’ care.
     

  • Commemoration of one year anniversary of COVID-19 shows disproportionate toll pandemic has taken on AB’s seniors

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    March 11, 2021

    Commemoration of the one year anniversary of COVID-19 shows the disproportionate toll the pandemic has taken on Alberta’s seniors 

    EDMONTON - March 11, 2021 marks the one year anniversary of the declaration of COVID-19 as a global pandemic, and seniors groups, labour groups, and advocacy groups are gathering outside of the Federal Building at the Legislature to install an visual representation of the lives we have lost to COVID-19, especially those of Alberta’s seniors who have been disproportionately affected. The visual will be a collection of roses, made by Erin Alyward, each one colour coded to show the age of the person we lost. The advocates and activists will also be joined by members of Alberta Arts Action Group, a group which blends arts and activism, who will sing and recite poetry as we mark this solemn occasion. 
     
  • Alberta Budget 2021

    EDMONTON
    February 25, 2021

    Budget 2021 is a disingenuous attempt to cover the privatization of our health care

    Just as Budget 2020 was pushed through with unrealistic forecasts for oil prices and subsequent unfeasible estimations for government revenue, Budget 2021 is being presented under the pretense of unrealistic forecasts for the health needs of Albertans. Quite simply, Budget 2021 is a cruel blow to our public health care system in favor of privatization.

  • APWG: Bill C-213 important step towards a long-awaited national, universal Pharmacare

    February 23, 2021

    Bill C-213 important step towards long-awaited national, universal Pharmacare

    EDMONTON - The Alberta Pharmacare Working Group (APWG) is encouraged by the tabling and subsequent debate of Bill C-213, An Act to Enact the Canada Pharmacare Act. If passed, this private member’s bill would create a framework for the implementation of a national pharmacare program modeled after the Canada Health Act, founded on the principles of public administration, comprehensiveness, universality, portability and accessibility. The Bill comes before the House of Commons in an historic vote tomorrow, February 24, 2021.
  • Wage top-up signals calm before the storm for Alberta's essential workers

    February 10, 2021
    EDMONTON

    Wage top-up signals calm before the storm for Alberta's essential workers

    Friends of Medicare were relieved to learn today that the dedicated health care staff and essential workers of this province will finally be receiving wage top-ups after many months of waiting. During a press conference this afternoon, Premier Kenney and Minister of Labour Jason Copping announced that under Alberta’s Critical Worker Benefit 380,000 workers in both the public and private sector will receive a one-time top-up payment of $1200.

    “While Albertans continue to contend with the uncertainty of this pandemic, between the government's vaccine rollout and their decision to reopen bars and restaurants while we’re seeing unpredictable new variants, this is certainly great news for our vital workers, though considerably overdue,” says Sandra Azocar, Executive Director of Friends of Medicare.

  • Residents & families can rest easy that homes for Albertans with disabilities will not be privatized

    January 29, 2021
    EDMONTON

    Residents & families can rest easy that homes for Albertans with disabilities will not be privatized

    After many months of waiting, Rajan Sawhney, Minister of Community and Social Services, announced today that the Alberta government will maintain the current service model for residential and personal care facilities for people with disabilities in Edmonton and Calgary.  Albertans who have called these Direct Operations sites their homes for years or decades will be able to remain there under public operation.