Strike support for Sisters at Port Arthur Health Centre

RE: Strike support for Sisters at Port Arthur Health Centre

As I am sure you are aware the Unifor Local 229 workers from Port Arthur Health Centre have been on strike since Monday April 9, 2018.
Our Unifor Sisters work as Medical Aides, Medical Records, Medical Secretaries and Medical Billing Clerks. There are 65 women working here some with 37 years of service. Of the 65 all women working here only 22 are full time permanent staff with only 16 of these women getting benefits. All the other Sisters working at the PAHC are casual workers with no benefits, no permanent part time or full-time employment, no job security and no guarantee or scheduled hours of work. Most casuals are working full-time hours, some for 15 years! These Sisters are making just over minimum wage and the working conditions are horrendous. There is no respect from the management team for the work these women do.

Everyday there are scabs crossing the picket line to work for the doctors at the clinic. Our Sisters are afraid and intimidated on the picket line. The most important thing to our Sisters is that the patients accessing their doctors continue to do so if they need to. The doctors and management team at the PAHC have taken advantage of our Sisters and continue to bully and intimidate them. Prior to us going on strike the management team ordered a final vote offer and have so far refused to come back to the bargaining table.

Our Sisters at the PAHC need support. None of these sisters has ever been on a picket line or even a rally. Most of our Sisters are either old enough to retire but cannot because none of them have a pension or benefits, or they are young single moms. The way they are being treated is repulsive. Our Sisters need financial support, in the form of donations. We would like to purchase grocery and gas cards for all our sisters on the picket line. If any Local Union or business would like to offer a meal on the line or any other donation, it would be very much appreciated. They also need physical and spiritual support on the picket lines. We picket from 7:30 am – 6:00 pm Monday to Friday and 10:00 am – 1:00 pm Saturday and Sunday. The last ask is that you and your members, friends and families please call the numbers below and demand the employer come to the bargaining and give these women a fair agreement.

807-346-6217 phone, 807-346-1000 phone, Fax number 807-346-6251 and email at We ask that you all call, email and fax all these contacts continuously until we get back to the bargaining table.

Kari Jefford President Unifor Local 229
You can send all financial donations to
Unifor Local 229
101-106 North Cumberland Street, Thunder Bay, ON P7A 4M2
Phone 807-474-4229

There are a number of ways you can show your support for our striking sisters at PAHC:

Send messages of support.
Walk the picket line with them.
Bring them food, coffee, doughnuts.
Call or email to get back to the bargaining table.
Contact your rep if you are being asked to do work usually done by the striking workers.

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