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Families First? Shortsighted government underfunding means thousands of special-needs children awaiting therapy

January 15, 2013
For immediate release:  January 15, 2013 British Columbians were dismayed to learn from a CBC Go Public report this week that families with autistic children are having to wait as long as two and a half years for crucial speech language therapy. Click here to read CBCs Go Public Report: -Child who doesn't speak waits 2½ years for therapy"

42nd Annual HSA Convention to be held April 18 - 20, 2013 in Vancouver

January 11, 2013
The next HSA Annual Convention will take place April 18-20, 2013 at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver. All HSA members are welcome to attend and speak at the convention.  However, only delegates have the right to vote. For chapters with 49 or fewer members, the HSA chief steward is the sole delegate.  If the chief steward is not attending convention, an alternate should be identified.  Chapters with more than 49 members are entitled to one additional delegate for each additional 50 members or portion thereof.

Nominations open for David Bland Memorial Award

January 10, 2013
In 2005, David Bland -- a vocational rehabilitation counsellor and HSA member from Richmond Mental Health -- was murdered at his workplace by a former client. His tragic death served as a sombre reminder that more needs to be done to prevent incidents of violence in the workplace and to protect health care and social services workers on the job.

Last call for HSA Election Campaign School

January 10, 2013
Space is still available in HSAs 2-day, non-partisan election campaign school.  This will be the last campaign school offered by HSA before the May 2013 provincial election, so members planning to work on this  election are encouraged to apply. This workshop is designed for members with little or no experience in electoral politics, but who are interested in working on election campaigns or running for political office.  The school will focus on opportunities for involvement in the upcoming provincial election, but will also touch on municipal and federal elections. 

Nominations open for David Bland Memorial Award

January 9, 2013
In 2005, David Bland -- a vocationalrehabilitation counsellor and HSA member from Richmond Mental Health -- wasmurdered at his workplace by a former client.  His tragic death served asa sombre reminder that more needs to be done to prevent incidents of violencein the workplace and to protect health care and social services workers on thejob. 

Nominations open for HSA board members in Regions 1, 3, 5, 7, & 9

January 8, 2013
This year, Regional Director elections will take place in Regions 1, 3, 5, 7, and 9.  All HSA members in these regions are encouraged to put their name forward for these important positions. Directors meet, on average, every six weeks and take an active leadership role in representing the union.  They receive wage replacement for the time they spend in official meetings at their own regular rate of pay.  Part-time and casual members are reimbursed as if they were at work during the meetings they attend.

Community Health Services and Support: Bargaining reconvenes today

January 7, 2013
Bargaining for the Community Health Services and Support sector reconvenes on Monday, January 7 in Vancouver following a break over the holidays. Members in the sector have been in bargaining for a year. There will be no job action this week, but if an agreement cannot be reached by the end of next week, rotating strike action will recommence starting as early as January 14. Workers will be contacted through their stewards or union office if their workplace is a target for job action. Watch the website for details, and sign up at hsabc.org to get news updates.

Help for abused boys who become men

January 4, 2013
castanet.net  Don. W. started drinking when he was 13 to numb the pain he felt from years of bullying and sexual, physical and mental abuse. The Keremeos man remained an alcoholic for much of his life, until at age 53, he realized he wanted to re-discover who he was. A big part of finding himself was getting counselling through the South Okanagan Victim Assistance Society, SOVAS. Now the men's counselling program, which turned his life around, is facing financial challenges due to cutbacks in fundraising money.

Therefore be it resolved

January 2, 2013
HSA members will soon be preparing for the 2013 HSA Convention, to be held April 18 - 20, 2013 at the Fairmont Hotel (Vancouver Hotel) in Vancouver. Annual convention is the union's annual meeting where chapter representatives from around the province determine the union's future direction. Policies, actions, constitutional amendments, and structural changes are all discussed and debated at convention.

Men's program forced to scale back

December 30, 2012
Okanagan Sunday After scratching together funding for its men's counselling program, the South Okanagan Victim Assistance Society (SOVAS) could be forced to cut its hours due to financial challenges. For the past four years, Anne Reinders has been a counsellor for the program, which provides free counselling to men who have suffered emotional, physical or sexual abuse, either as children or as adults. She said that since the inception of the program, SOVAS staff have recognized its need and has been committed to coming up with ways to fund the counselling program.