VOLUME 11 No. 8 | APRIL 20, 2021

Paid a woman's wage ad campaign

“A profession is just as valuable as a trade. But for François Legault’s government, the male category will always outweigh the female. Every day, we’re paid a woman’s wage to do essential work. It’s time for things to change.”

To convey this message, the APTS and the FIQ are jointly launching a major ad campaign on April 21. The ads will sharply criticize the way the government is treating the 131,000 members of the APTS-FIQ alliance, most of whom are women. Over the past 20 years, pay increases given to government employees have never risen above inflation. Their purchasing power has constantly been eroded, and pay discrimination has been the outcome.

Follow the Paid a woman’s wage campaign on radio and TV, in newspapers, and on digital platforms.

Resounding majorities in favour of a strike mandate

Special general assemblies are now in full swing. Across Québec, APTS members are being asked to vote on a strike mandate of up to 10 days of strike action, to be exercised at the appropriate moment.

Professionals and technicians in 16 institutions have been sending the Legault government a clear message: since March 29, 92% have voted in favour of the strike mandate! The virtual assemblies will continue until May 6. We hope a great many of you will turn out and vote. Let’s act together to defend our public health and social services system.

Getting a reimbursement for dues paid to professional orders

More than 6,000 people have already filled out the form attached to a letter asking health and social services minister Christian Dubé to reimburse dues paid by APTS members who belong to a professional order as part of their job. The invitation to support this letter was sent out on April 6. Feel free to add your name and to share the letter as widely as possible.

Coming out of the crisis in health and safety

To mark International Workers’ Day on Saturday, May 1, APTS members in the Montréal area are invited to join a major inter-union march. Participants will meet at 1 p.m. in Parc Lafontaine, across the street from 1560 Sherbrooke Street East. You can follow the event on Facebook.

The focus of the event will be on the conditions required to get us out of the crisis: stronger public services, better protection for physical and mental health, decent pay, stronger rights for all and a genuine commitment to the environment. We’ll be marching this year to fight for these demands.

How to say thank you to lab workers

Minister Christian Dubé launched National Medical Laboratory Week by singing the praises of laboratory personnel. The APTS took the opportunity to remind him that beyond saying thank you in words, the government must provide financial recognition as a tangible response to the work of 5,000 lab employees who have performed over 8 million COVID-19 tests over the past year. Read the press release we put out while our members were demonstrating on April 14.

Reassignment of pregnant workers

Have you been assigned to a new work station because you filed a preventive withdrawal and reassignment certificate for a pregnant or breast-feeding worker? Don’t forget that your employer is required to maintain all of the rights and benefits you would have enjoyed if you hadn’t been reassigned. For instance, the employer must keep on paying the night shift premium associated with your job, even if you’re now working days.

Let's act now to defend our rights

Since April 13, a parliamentary commission has been carrying out the clause-by-clause study of Bill 59 that will lead to its adoption. Proposed changes to the occupational health and safety regime will make it even more difficult to get the CNESST to accept claims related to work-related illness. We urge to send your MNA a message while there’s still time. You can say you strongly object to this major step backward in terms of rights for victims of work-related illnesses, and ask your elected representative to take action. To contact your MNA, go to the uttam website or Facebook page.

A minute of silence to honour workers who died because of their job

April 28 is an international day of mourning for workers who died because of their job. The pandemic has made many victims in the workplace, and APTS members are invited to observe a minute of silence in their memory.

In particular, we will be thinking of the colleagues and loved ones of Laurence Ménard, an APTS member employed as a social work technician at CLSC Drummond (CIUSSS de la Mauricie−Centre-du-Québec). She caught COVID-19 on the job and died of complications of the illness in May 2020.

We also urge you to keep on taking preventive measures in the workplace so that we can reduce the number of work-related injuries, illnesses and deaths.

A talk by Damien Contandriopoulos

If you’re unable to join us for the full duration of the Carrefour des idées event on May 5 and 6, you can still watch the opening talk on our YouTube page (in French). Damien Contandriopoulos, who teaches at the University of Victoria, will tell us about the current state of the health and social services system and its history. This event is open to all, so don’t hesitate to invite friends and colleagues!

Join us on May 5 at 1:30 p.m. The link will be available at that time on the APTS YouTube page.

Let's not forget them

The Mouvement PHAS is asking you to join it in demanding better access to health and social services for people living with a disability. COVID-19, confinement, and withdrawal of health and social services have had a severe impact on them. Over the next few weeks, send a virtual postcard voicing their demands or share visuals describing aspects of their situation.

For an ecofeminist recovery

The Carrefour d’action politique is inviting you to a webinar featuring Eve-Lyne Couturier, researcher at IRIS and co-author of a study on gender inequality as experienced by women during public health, economic and environmental crises (Inégales dans la tourmente – L’impact des crises sur les femmes). The webinar will be an opportunity to talk about the kind of economic recovery that would protect the environment and foster greater equality between men and women.

You can sign up via our Facebook event page. To attend, go to the webinar on May 12 at 6:30 p.m. and enter the meeting ID: 939 3342 0588 and the passcode: 462570.

Update from the World March of Women

The 2020 World March of Women was postponed for a year and will take place on October 17, 2021. Regretfully, the organizing committee had to cancel the planned march in Terrebonne because of logistical issues related to the pandemic. The Québec coordinating group for the march is working to organize an alternative event that will comply with public health directives. Local feminist action reps will be consulted on this topic over the coming weeks.

We invite you to visit the World March of Women Facebook page and website to follow virtual activities organized to support the feminist climate justice demand on April 24.