Privatization key theme at HSA's 35th convention

HSAs 35th Annual Convention kicked off Friday with an announcement by HSA President Cindy Stewart that she will not be seeking re-election when her current term expires in April 2007.

Stewart noted the union has received a strong vote of confidence from the membership and is well-positioned to tackle the challenges that lie ahead.

One of the challenges Stewart identified is the growing threat of health care privatization, and she challenged delegates to take a key role in protecting public health care for the future.

Privatization was also the theme of the conventions keynote address by health policy analyst Dr. Michael Rachlis. Dr. Rachlis pointed to numerous examples of innovation within the public sector to address systemic problems such as wait times. A copy of Dr. Rachliss presentation will be available on the HSA website next week at

Other highlights of the convention included speeches by BC Federation of Labour President Jim Sinclair and National Union of Provincial and General Employees (NUPGPE) President James Clancy.

Delegates debated and passed a number of resolutions directing the union to continue its efforts to increase the profile of health science professionals and protect services delivered by HSA members from cuts and contracting out.

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