VOLUME 11 No. 5 | MARCH 8, 2021

Women, inequality and poverty

Excellent educational tools on the poverty and inequality experienced by women have been produced by Québec’s anti-poverty collective (Collectif pour un Québec sans pauvreté), of which the APTS is a member, to mark International Women’s Rights Day. Recent data on economic and pay inequalities, work/family balance, housing, homelessness and other issues are presented in Femmes, inégalités et pauvreté, a brochure illustrated by Mathilde Cinq-Mars. The collective is also offering social media vignettes and an interesting podcast that asks women to talk about how they see poverty and inequality.

The government doesn't listen to women

Representatives of the Collectif 8 mars (including Laure Letarte-Lavoie of the APTS) met the minister responsible for the status of women, Isabelle Charest, to talk about the effect of the pandemic on women and find out how the government plans to eliminate systemic discrimination.

In a context where many women have experienced major setbacks, the minister’s responses were not reassuring. The challenges that women face are more difficult than they have ever been before in terms of work-family balance, job loss, increased spousal and family violence, and the mental burden of responsibility handled by women. The minister was unable to make any kind of commitment, and neither does the government seem to be in a hurry to include women in the process of developing its recovery plan. See the collective’s press briefing and press release (in French).

Delayed responses for trip cancellation insurance claims

Trip cancellation claims are now much more frequent because of the pandemic, and it’s taking longer to process them. Minimally, you should be getting a response within three months of filing your claim, even if the claim isn’t finalized and you haven’t been given a final decision regarding compensation. If this is not the case, we suggest you contact CanAssistance.

2019 statement of participation in the RREGOP

Your statement of participation in the RREGOP, with data to 31 December 2019, will be available by the end of March 2021. Unlike previous years, it will be provided only in digital format.

To get your document, go to the My account page on the Retraite Québec website. If you sign up for text or email notifications, you’ll be notified when the statement becomes available in your personal file. See the My account page if you have any questions.

If you need help, contact Retraite Québec’s customer service at 1-800-463-5533.

Carrefour des idées 2 : Making choices so that we can act

Our project to provide the APTS with a new policy platform was launched at the 2019 convention. Now it's time to start thinking about action as we continue our discussions. Come learn and exchange about issues related to the current state of the health and social services system. Our agenda: a major conference, exchanges between panelists, workshops to foster discussion, and a get-together from 5 to 7 p.m. Join us on May 5 (afternoon) and May 6 (morning).

Space is limited, so it’s best to register early via the GEMS Web portal. If you don’t have access to GEMS, contact your local executive or Karine Daignault (kdaignault@aptsq.com). The deadline for registration is April 9.

New video clips on APTS demands

We’re continuing to post video clips presenting some of our sectoral demands under current contract talks with the government. Videos on work overload, and on premiums for working with clients with severe behaviour disorders (SBDs) or in CHSLDs, have recently been put online. Keep an eye on the negoapts.com page for two more videos, one on premiums for working in youth centres and residential resources with continuous assistance (RACs), and another on training.

Deeply unfair situation regarding COVID premiums

APTS members work in the same institutions as nurses and beneficiary attendants, and perform tasks very similar to theirs. And yet, they are not entitled to the 8% premium or the “rising scale” premium. This is a deeply unfair situation that we have been denouncing for almost a year. An article in BleuAPTS (in French) gives an overview of actions taken to obtain COVID premiums for APTS members who are entitled to them.

Rent increases for people living in RACs

The APTS has strongly criticized the decision to increase monthly rents by hundreds of dollars for people living in RACs (residential resources with continuous assistance). This abusive and ill-considered decision will have negative effects on their rehabilitation and may even push them out onto the streets. Up until now, residents have been paying between $550 and $650 a month – but this amount could now rise to $1,025, leaving them only $253 for their personal expenses. In an interview with the Journal de Montréal, the APTS president noted the brutality of the announcement, providing barely three weeks’ notice, and appealed to the minister’s humanity.