One of the two candidates vying for the leadership of the Manitoba Progressive Conservative Party has pledged to repair the broken relationship with nurses across our province, the Manitoba Nurses Union announced today.
Last Thursday, Sept. 16, MNU sent each of the PC Party leadership candidates, Heather Stefanson and Shelly Glover, a pledge for them to read and sign, as a statement of their good faith intention to resolve the nurse staffing crisis. Click Here to view the full pledge (PDF 157KB).
Candidate Heather Stefanson signed the pledge and returned it to MNU, while candidate Shelly Glover reached out to MNU President Darlene Jackson by telephone over the weekend and stated that she wants to work with MNU. However, we did not receive a signed pledge.
As a quick summary, this pledge includes, among others, an acknowledgement of a critical nursing shortage, a commitment to repair the broken relationship between the provincial government and nurses, and a commitment to share data in a more open, transparent manner so that all Manitobans can see clearly the nursing situation in all regions of the province.
This pledge was made public by President Jackson at the National Nurses Day of Action event at the Manitoba Legislature on Friday, September 17, 2021.
“In Manitoba right now, we are awaiting the outcome of a leadership race for the provincial Progressive Conservative Party. The winner of this leadership contest will be the next Premier of Manitoba,” said Jackson. “This next Premier will set the tone for the province, especially when it comes to our health care system. We need ACTION.”
The current staffing situation is dire: there simply aren’t enough nurses coming into the system to meet the demand. As of the end of July, there were 1,393 vacant nursing positions in the WRHA and Shared Health alone. When we include recent information from the rural regional health authorities, we estimate that there are more than 2,200 nursing positions vacant across the province.
We need our government, under the leadership of the successful candidate, to improve working conditions so that we can ensure that the nurses we still have in our health care system STAY in our health care system.
Media inquiries can be directed to Brandi Johnson, Senior Manager of Communications and External Relations, at firstname.lastname@example.org.