Thursday, June 15, 2017

Cold Lake Points West Living Lock-Out Post # 4----After more than 18 months of tense relations and a lock out dating back to December, it appears Points West Living has bypassed their old staff and will be working with a non profit group to man their Cold Lake facility instead.----Trevor Zimmerman So instead of settling with their workers they found an organization to come in and bust the union for them? The locked out staff at Points West Living are trying to improve patient care and this is the thanks they get? A collaborative partnership with the existing staff who have established relationships with the residents would have been a better move, but I guess Doug Mills wouldn't keep his bonuses if that happened.




This is your NDP GOA in action folks. Not much different than the PC government that we fired is it? But there you go. We work on democracy one party at a time and when folks we hire don't perform we fire them. Time for a mass firing folks. But this time not of the workers at the continuing care facilities but in the GOA.

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We have just had a nap and we're thinking of next steps. Mum is in pain so I have given her two Tylenols.
I was supposed to go grocery shopping with her but I will wait until the pain killers take effect.
Younger boy is deep into the work of his portfolio (or at least I hope he is).
The day has passed like a crowd of seagulls over a landfill, descending now to the last hours. Luckily I have read a few books in the waiting time.
I am working on the Cold Lake terminations series. I am curious about it. Why would any continuing care business treat its employees like disposable diapers? I am not sure what sort of folks would do this kind of action but sure as bees make honey there is a trail of information that I can follow to these last steps.
Why even bother to make a trail of such information visible to myself? In order to understand the world of government, labour and citizens it's useful to take specific events and dissect them much like a body on the examination table and see how all the organs of this body are functioning. In the continuing care system body I may be surprised to find out that labour is at odds with management of the public and private continuing care facilities; that government is indifferent to both labour and the industry; that citizens don't for the most part care about any of this mess unless of course they have family in the Cold Lake facility that is being transformed into a sort of experiment for future labour disputes or like me --they want to know.
Why do I want to know? Well, I am curious. I put my head to this instrument and I listen for what comes. It seems that this is the model for future conflicts and the message to current workers is this: shut up or be fired.
http://www.mylakelandnow.com/…/points-west-brings-saint-el…/
POINTS WEST BRINGS IN SAINT ELIZABETH HEALTHCARE TO REPLACE LOCKED OUT WORKERS
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 Chris Hunter CHRIS HUNTER, STAFF FRIDAY, MAY. 26TH, 2017
After more than 18 months of tense relations and a lock out dating back to December, it appears Points West Living has bypassed their old staff and will be working with a non profit group to man their Cold Lake facility instead.
The company has announced a “collaborative partnership” with Saint Elizabeth Health Care in a statement today. Saint Elizabeth will cover all staffing needs at the Cold Lake location including “registered nurses, licensed practical nurses, health care aides and clinical leadership.”
Saint Elizabeth describes themselves on their website as a “not-for-profit charitable organization, powered by people who are dedicated to changing lives, health care and society for the better.” The organization has been around for over 100 years with more than 8,000 staff members.
AHS opened an investigation on the Cold Lake facility in February after a former resident died shortly after being removed from their care. The resident’s family blame neglect from the staff replacing the locked out workers for her deteriorating condition leading up to her death.
Points West also announced that that they have plans to start construction on 49 new Supportive Living apartments in Cold Lake.
ZAYA - Zayasaikhan Sambuu

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Doubtful that these terminated workers will be able to go back to work at this facility. This is your government in Action folks. The PCs made these sorts of contracts and oversight remains indifferent. When there are complaints of poor care, families get retribution--evictions, bannings and lawsuits. What do workers get for talking publicly about the conditions of work and problems? I guess they get mass terminations.
This is the good old Alberta way and we can see that the NDPCs are no different than the PCs. In fact, they may be worse because how do you like getting shafted by the very people you got to office? It's remarkable how the NDPCs market themselves as the peoples' party and then screw the very people who voted for them. Could this be their magical acts of office? I would say so. At least with the PCs we didn't have the baloney that they actually represented us; they only represented themselves and it seems that this is true of the NDPCs as well.
Thanks to Vicki Kaminski we can see the extent of the lack of representation.
But Kaminski said once both sides were back at the bargaining table, it became clear the NDP government would not allow AHS to make a reasonable offer.
"We were given a mandate of one per cent per year, for three years — far less than any other union has received, far less than government gave its own employees, and far less than we are accruing for wage settlements."


After more than 18 months of tense relations and a lock out dating back to December, it appears Points West Living has ... more ›
MYLAKELANDNOW.COM

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POINTS WEST BRINGS IN SAINT ELIZABETH HEALTHCARE TO REPLACE LOCKED OUT WORKERS



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After more than 18 months of tense relations and a lock out dating back to December, it appears Points West Living has bypassed their old staff and will be working with a non profit group to man their Cold Lake facility instead.
The company has announced a “collaborative partnership” with Saint Elizabeth Health Care in a statement today. Saint Elizabeth will cover all staffing needs at the Cold Lake location including “registered nurses, licensed practical nurses, health care aides and clinical leadership.”
Saint Elizabeth describes themselves on their website as a “not-for-profit charitable organization, powered by people who are dedicated to changing lives, health care and society for the better.” The organization has been around for over 100 years with more than 8,000 staff members.
AHS opened an investigation on the Cold Lake facility in February after a former resident died shortly after being removed from their care. The resident’s family blame neglect from the staff replacing the locked out workers for her deteriorating condition leading up to her death.

Points West also announced that that they have plans to start construction on 49 new Supportive Living apartments in Cold Lake.
Julie Ali · 

The government of Alberta is responsible for the problems in the continuing care system. The lack of adequate oversight results in non-compliances that are tolerated as per the Lacombe facility findings recently. If the Lacombe long term care facility is an AHS run facility and has non-compliances of the magnitude detailed in the CCHSS audit, what is the situation in other facilities that are not run by AHS? We don't know. The CCHSS audits remain private. We only know of the situation at Lacombe because of the Wildrose Party.

It's troubling that the NDP folks we hired to government similarly complained of the poor conditions in the continuing care system while they were in opposition, but when they form the government, they ignore the problems that are still present. Why else have the non-compliances in the accommodation audits for the Lacombe facility been ongoing for four years? I would say because both the PCs and the NDPCs tolerated these non-compliances. Prior to the current CCHSS audit of the Lacombe facility what were the previous audits indicating? We don't know because again, they aren't released to the public.

When families complain there is retribution such as evictions, bannings, lawsuits. A family in Grande Prairie recently had the husband banned for a year. His wife was taken out of the facility which appears to be another Points West facility and is now in the Grande Prairie Hospital. What does government do about the retribution and the complaints of the family of poor care? Nothing.

https://www.facebook.com/stephen.tucker.334
Stephen Tucker added 4 new photos — with Tammilee Rideout-Tucker.
April 27
Dad fought with them for years with documentation and pics plenty of proof to put them under . But everyone turns a blind eye to the abuse and call it un founded . The judge without any looking at foundings or proof just say your banned and any further cost comes to dad? How does a retirement man pay for lawyer fees. I want this banning my dad from the care home for a full year without visiting rights to go viral .
********************
Now we have a case of the Cold Lake Points West employees being fired while the Vegreville Points West staff are retained. Why? Could it be that the vocal advocacy of the Cold Lake workers was responsible for the action taken by the employer?

In any case, the government of Alberta will do nothing. It never does in any case of retribution. For the retribution of families, government itself created the Trespass to Premises legislation without an appeal process. Once you are banned, you are banned and the legal system upholds the retribution.

In the case of the Cold Lake workers, government itself created the contracts with private providers and if they want to fire folks they can do it. We don't have fairness or access to justice for these workers because this is the way government has set up these laws. This situation is especially galling because we thought by hiring the NDP folks this junk would end. Instead, we've had the NDP folks basically use their knowledge of unions to screw the union workers. The first evidence of this was in the contract negotiations:
http://www.cbc.ca/.../former-alberta-health-services-ceo...
But Kaminski said once both sides were back at the bargaining table, it became clear the NDP government would not allow AHS to make a reasonable offer.

"We were given a mandate of one per cent per year, for three years — far less than any other union has received, far less than government gave its own employees, and far less than we are accruing for wage settlements."
****
The very people we believed in who we voted to government have shown us their unworthiness to be in office.
Don't expect any help from government or the NDP folks. Instead activate yourself to go to the constituency of Sarah Hoffman and other NDP MLAs and tell your story to the voters. Tell us. And we will write to the MLAs and vote them out if they don't end the retribution junk.
It's up to you all and the citizens of Cold Lake. Sundre citizens kicked GOA rump and you all can do it as well:
http://www.friendsofmedicare.org/wodak_sundre

NDP Health Minister Hoffman explaining that they’re not really losing LTC beds, although there might be a slightly different level of care the number of beds is increasing from 15 to 40.

The Minister’s lines could have been written by any of the Tory Health Minsters in the last dozen years.
***
The closure of beds was a given until the community united and got #MediaAttention and #SocialMediaChangesEverything.

Government can do whatever it wants to do and rarely does what we want it to do.
If you want these workers to get justice you have to work hard for this matter. The NDP folks like the PCs folks before them don't care about anyone but themselves and their dynasty. In this case my prediction is that the workers will stay fired.
LikeReply2 mins
Trevor Zimmerman
So instead of settling with their workers they found an organization to come in and bust the union for them? The locked out staff at Points West Living are trying to improve patient care and this is the thanks they get? A collaborative partnership with the existing staff who have established relationships with the residents would have been a better move, but I guess Doug Mills wouldn't keep his bonuses if that happened.
UnlikeReply12May 26, 2017 8:55pm
Amanda Lee Whillans
�� thanks Trevor!
LikeReplyMay 26, 2017 9:00pm
Amanda Lee Whillans
Points West Living in Cold Lake also only notified their residents of this decision today, the same day they made this information public. The residents and their families were not consulted in this decision, and their input was not requested, or wanted.

Points West is also the subject of labour board complaints, and remains under investigation by both AHS, and PPIC (Persons for protection in care)

Many residents of the facility have moved out, or are concidering doing so.

Points Wests decision to terminate staff who are familiar to residents and their individual desires and needs comes fast on the heels of the introduction to change in legislation around assisted living, and the ability of a unionized worksite to apply to the labour board for arbitration of a first collective agreement, which would have marked an end to the ongoing labour dispute, and had the residents trusted and familiar staff back inside the building in short order.

The replacement workers will all be new to both points west and the residents inside points west.

Points Wests decision to find an 'alternative delivery method' to the medical care of the residents at this time, and in this fashion is an obvious, and very telling attempt to prevent unionization in this facility.
LikeReply13May 26, 2017 5:51pm
Judy Prokopchuk · 

It's time this government shuts down greedy businesses that put profits over giving adequate care to the residents who have built this country! Our seniors deserve better!
Seniors care in Alberta is a way bigger issue than just at this PWL site. Thank you to the Points West living Locked Out Group, for bringing awareness of how bad seniors care is and how we. red to fix the problems that are happening. People need to be before corporations profits every time. Hey Doug Mills, you will get old, let's just hope somebody takes care of you better than your current business model of taking care of somebody else parents!
LikeReply10May 27, 2017 8:42am
Christina Sefton
Same people who gave shitty care. Govt needs to protect the citizens of alberta. These people are not on vacation. They are there because they need medical care. Putting in proper patient to caregiver ratios, with room to increase due to behaviour or needs assmt. We look after our children with ratios, age discrimination needs to stop, our adults deserve the best care as well. People are people. Theres a difference between an adult living in an apartment and one who requires a nurse and a reason why they aren't at home with family.put in something that allows a family member to stay and give care, because now govt wont fund that, or do the right thing and put in ratios. 1:29, 1:15.....not appropriate. 1:6 for caregivers, !: 30 for meds is an appropriate measure.and when you combine the na who also is required to do mds and dressings 1:6 also makes more sense.
LikeReply5May 27, 2017 8:02am
SuSanne Theresa Henriksen · 

I definitely agree with you, well said
LikeReplyMay 28, 2017 1:10pm
Gayle Hardy · 

This organization should totally be embarrassed by it's dirty handed tactics in dealing with a staff that was fighting for the seniors. Points West has proven what the workers were asking for were true.Surprising that no one seems to care that it was the workers with a contract that fought for this and are not honored for their caring.
Non profit teaming up with a for Profit hmmmm to block out workers?
LikeReply3May 28, 2017 8:57amEdited
Rose Read · 

The workers at PWL Cold Lake continue to fight and struggle with unfair working conditions and labour practices. Not only are they standing up for themselves but they are standing up for the patients and Albertans they take care of. Training, Staffing and Scheduling are the issues at hand. Will Saint Elizabeth Health Care staff receive updated training? Will Saint Elizabeth Health Care receive the proper number of staff on a shift, what will happen when a staff member calls in sick or when members are away on vacation, with Saint Elizabeth Health Care provide cover off? What about scheduling? Will Saint Elizabeth Health Care change the schedule from day to day so that staff are not given a proper amount of lead time for schedule changes? If these issues are not dealt with the residents of PWL Cold Lake will be the ones to suffer. If these issues are dealt with then why was the employer not willing to come to an agreement with the locked out workers?
Rodney Feland · 

So when do they start picketing the Meadowlark Office?

Edmonton Saint Elizabeth Office
141 Meadowlark Health Centre
156th St and 87th Ave
Edmonton, AB
T5R 5W9
Phone: 1.855.275.3549
LikeReply5May 26, 2017 9:52pm
Ray Domeij · 

Now they can add scabbing to their potfolio
LikeReply3May 26, 2017 6:37pm
Rene Collison · 

SERIOUSLY!!! ANOTHER 49 SUITES... THEY CAN'T EVEN PROVIDE ADEQUETE CARE FOR THE PEOPLE THEY ALREADY HAVE!!! W5... WHERE ARE YOU???
LikeReply3May 26, 2017 8:25pm
Lynn Williams · 
Works at Self-Employed

Nothing like scab labour looking after loved ones
https://www.facebook.com/stephen.tucker.334





Stephen Tucker shared his post.
10 hrs
Stephen Tucker added 4 new photos — with Tammilee Rideout-Tucker.
April 27
PLEASE SHARE!!!! It breaks by heart to have my mom in a emergency room bed were at least dad can now visit her . A care home in grande prairie has abused my mom for the last time . We are now taking up space in an emergency room while awaiting for a doctor to help us find a spot . The care home today slammed the door in my face as I tried to talk to them. As I had to remove mom s belongings out of there so the abuse can't continue. Dad fought with them for years with documentation and pics plenty of proof to put them under . But everyone turns a blind eye to the abuse and call it un founded . The judge without any looking at foundings or proof just say your banned and any further cost comes to dad? How does a retirement man pay for lawyer fees. I want this banning my dad from the care home for a full year without visiting rights to go viral . He has legal guardianship to be her voice from a court but means nothing . How does the justice system work ? She cannot speak for herself . Please share the shit outta this . Media here I come

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http://www.friendsofmedicare.org/wodak_sundre





Guest Blog - What's Happening in Sundre?


Posted by Margot Howe 105.60sc on March 27, 2016

What's happening in Sundre?


wodak.jpg Carol Wodak, March 27, 2016
Note: We're pleased to feature a guest blog post from respected elder care advocate Carol Wodak. Carol is a valuable resource on issues and information relating to continuing care, and has put together some facts and her perspective on what's happening with the closure of 15 publicly delivered long-term care spaces in Sundre, while seeing the opening of a supportive living facility operated privately by Mountain View Seniors' Housing.
Mountain View Seniors’ Housing is a non-profit organization, and a registered charity, operating seniors’ lodges, seniors’ self-contained apartments and subsidized family housing in Carstairs, Sundre, Olds and Didsbury  By 2012, MVSH submitted a plan to the Alberta government’s ASLI program, as a consequence of identifying the need for more seniors’ care in the Sundre area, including assisted living and long-term care.  At that time, Sundre Hospital and Care Centre had 15 long-term care beds, and the Foothills Lodge had 43 residents.
By 2014, MVSH was awarded a $3.8 million Affordable Supportive Living Initiative (ASLI) capital grant for a 103 bed facility which would consist of 40 level 4 and 4D supportive living units, 45 level 1 and 2 lodge units to replace Foothills Lodge, and 18 independent living “life lease” units, similar to a project in Olds. MVSH had approved $26.6 million from Life Lease sales and with financing to provide the estimated construction costs. By 2015, the federal government had added Investment in Affordable Housing funding to bring the total public investment to $8,232,000 for the 103-bed facility.  The facility was expected to open in 2016.
Meanwhile, the Alberta Progressive Conservative government had been systematically shifting long term care from nursing home facilities to a new model called, at that time, “Designated Assisted Living” and now “Designated Supportive Living”, and the New Democrat opposition had been roundly condemning wholesale displacement of persons assessed as needing the higher level of care.
In an article in the 04 May 2010 Tofield Mercury, NDP MLA Rachel Notley said “charges that the government plans to 'move people out of hospital beds into private for profit beds where they receive less care and pay more for it: that's wrong."… the waiting lists for those fragile Albertans needing long term care is not being addressed.   "Albertans are waiting up to two years for long term care and this government has shut down beds," she said.   "A lack of long term care beds means seniors will be faced with one of three options: (1) not getting the care they need; (2) staying in acute care hospital beds, or (3) paying exorbitant fees at supportive living facilities."
They have consistently ignored the results of the 2006 million-dollar Alberta Heritage Foundation for Medical Research study [on behalf of Alberta Health and Wellness] about the health outcomes of seniors cared for in nursing homes and in supportive or assisted living facilities.
Fast forward to March 8, 2016, when radio station rock104 reported Council Learns Of AHS Plans To Decommission 15 Sundre Hospital Long Term Care Beds.
“…There was a big announcement made by Alberta Health Services at the Monday, March 7th town council meeting.
AHS is going to decommission the 15 long term care beds at Sundre Hospital with the construction of the new Mountain View Seniors Housing facility in Sundre, according to Mayor Terry Leslie.
He adds there are 15 long term care beds in the Sundre Hospital and those residents will see a change in care.
Mayor Leslie says they are looking forward for ongoing community meetings to try and make the transition as easy as possible for patients affected and make sure resident care into the future is going to be the paramount focus.
He adds there is a contract to provide service not in long term care but in supportive living care at the new facility. So he calls it a change in the way care will be provided to seniors…”
Closure of the LTC beds was not an AHS decision.  The LTC beds in the Sundre Hospital were registered as an Auxiliary   Hospital.  According to the OPERATION OF APPROVED HOSPITALS REGULATION Alberta Regulation 247/1990Every hospital shall require prior approval of the Minister for a) any proposed major change or termination of an existing service provided by the hospital ...”
The current NDP government is on record over a long period of time, in 2012, NDP MLA David Eggen compared the closure of the long term care facility in Carmangay to “domestic abuse” at a rally to protest Premier Redford’s decision. Also in 2012, Premier Rachel Notley commented that the Tory plan to limit LTC beds and shift to supportive living “aims to force sick seniors to shoulder a larger share of their health-related costs and live in facilities that may offer them an inadequate level of care.
"It's unfair, but it's also absolutely penny wise and pound foolish," Notley said.
"These patients will end up in much more expensive ER and acute care beds because they are the last resort."
The 2015 NDP Election Platform promised to create 2,000 public long term care beds [not to close public beds and shifting to private supportive living], and to “end the PCs’ costly experiments in privatization, and redirect the funds to publicly delivered services.
They are short-changing Alberta seniors by not creating enough long-term care beds and relying on expensive, for-profit delivery of inadequate assisted living and homecare.
Hansard records for Monday, March 14, 2016 and Tuesday March 15, 2016 show an interesting role reversal; the Wildrose protesting shutting down long-term care beds and laying off nurses in Sundre, and NDP Health Minister Hoffman explaining that they’re not really losing LTC beds, although there might be a slightly different level of care the number of beds is increasing from 15 to 40.
The Minister’s lines could have been written by any of the Tory Health Minsters in the last dozen years.
Friends of Medicare and the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees have joined the opposition to the closure of the LTC beds and the shift to a lower level of care which is provided with increased private costs for goods and services, and increased responsibility for residents and/or family and friends.
Public Interest Alberta is on record as opposing closure of public long term care beds, with the Seniors Task Force participation in a documentary about the Carmangay closure, in their media releases, in their Position Paper on Long-Term Care, and in their meetings with the minister.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/edmonton/former-alberta-health-services-ceo-vickie-kaminski-says-she-resigned-due-to-ndp-political-interference-1.3522109



EXCLUSIVE

Former Alberta Health Services CEO Vickie Kaminski says she resigned due to NDP political interference


Confidential document alleges NDP interference in AUPE negotiations, Calgary EMS dispatch plan


By Jennie Russell, Charles Rusnell, CBC News Posted: Apr 05, 2016 6:07 PM MT Last Updated: Apr 06, 2016 7:12 AM MT
Vickie Kaminski (left) resigned as CEO of Alberta Health Services because of what she said was unacceptable political interference from Health Minister Sarah Hoffman and deputy minister Carl Amrhein.
Vickie Kaminski (left) resigned as CEO of Alberta Health Services because of what she said was unacceptable political interference from Health Minister Sarah Hoffman and deputy minister Carl Amrhein. (CBC)
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About The Author

Photo of Charles Rusnell, Jennie Russell
Charles Rusnell, Jennie Russell
Investigative reporters
Charles Rusnell and Jennie Russell are reporters with CBC Investigates, the award-winning investigative unit of CBC Edmonton. Their journalism in the public interest is widely credited with forcing accountability, transparency and democratic change in Alberta. Send tips in confidence to cbcinvestigates@cbc.ca. @charlesrusnell @jennierussell_

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Former Alberta Health Services chief executive officer Vickie Kaminski resigned because she believed she could no longer independently do her job as political interference worsened under the new NDP government and Health Minister Sarah Hoffman.
Kaminski's Nov. 25, 2015, resignation letter — obtained exclusively by CBC News — reveals the veteran health-care executive felt her professional reputation was at risk because political considerations repeatedly trumped proper, evidence-based management of Alberta's health system.
'Many (examples of political interference) are simply rooted in an ideology of the new government that does not allow AHS to do what needs to be, and should be done.'- Vickie Kaminski, in her resignation letter
"There are many examples of how this has played out over the past several months," she said. "Some of the examples transcend both the former government and the newly elected government of Alberta.
"More recently however, many (examples of political interference) are simply rooted in an ideology of the new government that does not allow AHS to do what needs to be, and should be done," Kaminski stated in the resignation letter, addressed to Linda Hughes, the incoming chair of the AHS board of directors, and AHS official administrator David Carpenter.
Kaminski provided several examples of political interference and unethical behaviour, including:

Government 'blocking' good management practices

In the letter, Kaminski said the political interference in AUPE bargaining and Calgary ambulance dispatch represented only a few "particularly troubling" examples among many.
She told Hughes and the AHS board of directors they may also wish to review briefing notes related to "linen, laundry and food services outsourcing, Edmonton and North Zone Lab Services, workforce initiatives that are simply everyday good management practices that the government is now blocking.
"All the items have solid business plans, are more effective and efficient, and would save significant public dollars," Kaminski wrote. "Even though we have identified the right things to do, and the right way to do them, we are being stopped."
Kaminski, reached through email, declined comment. Amrhein did not respond to an interview request.
In an interview Tuesday evening, Hoffman said she had never seen Kaminski's letter until CBC News showed it to her, and she insisted she was never told that Kaminski had resigned due to what she viewed as political interference in AHS.
Hoffman said she knew Kaminski was frustrated by her repeated requests for evidence to support recommendations related to the mix of private and public delivery of health care services that was being recommended.
But Hoffman said she considered those requests for evidence simply to be "good governance.
"I understand that from the tone of the letter she feels there was interference; I think it was governing," Hoffman said.
AHS has historically operated as an arm's-length agency from the Alberta Health ministry. AHS is governed by an appointed board of directors. With a budget of about $13 billion, it is the largest health authority in Canada. With 110,000 employees, it is the province's largest employer.
The health authority has a troubled history of senior executive turnover, at least some related to political interference in its operations. When the government hired Kaminski — a registered nurse with an MBA and 35 years of management experience — in March 2014, she became the fifth chief executive officer (CEO) in five years.
When her resignation was officially announced Nov. 27, 2015, two days after writing her internal resignation letter, Kaminski publicly stated her departure was a "personal decision." But her letter paints a picture of escalating political interference stemming directly from the health minister's office.
Vickie Kaminski

'More in voice mode'

In the letter, Kaminski said she had become increasingly concerned about communications between the Alberta Health ministry, through Amrhein, and AHS.
"With more and more frequency, cryptic emails are accompanied by the phrase 'more in voice mode' meaning there should not be any email trail," she wrote.
'It has begun to feel very much like an environment lacking in trust and transparency.'- Vickie Kaminski, in her resignation letter
"This verbal communication often contains specific direction with no substantiating documentation. I have taken to documenting the calls, and making notes that I often send back to the deputy (minister). It has begun to feel very much like an environment lacking in trust and transparency."
Kaminski also told Hughes and Carpenter in the letter that she was "apprehensive that (the AHS board) will not be allowed to function as a board should, especially since the regulations were quietly changed to allow government to appoint the clerk of executive council to the authority's board.
"This decision removes any illusions about whether or not the Government of Alberta will continue to overly influence the work of AHS or that there is any degree of independence," she wrote.
"As I recently told the Minister of Health: if all AHS activities are going to be micromanaged by the government, and if all decisions I make are having to be reviewed and vetted by the minister before they can be acted upon, then there are too many decision makers," Kaminski wrote.
Vickie Kaminski

NDP politically interfered in AUPE contract negotiations

The letter details how the NDP government repeatedly interfered in contract negotiations with the AUPE both in terms of timing and the wage increase offered.
Kaminski said the previous Tory government had mandated a zero per cent offer for several AUPE contracts, including general support services and auxiliary nursing staff. That caused negotiations to break down and the union filed a labour board complaint against AHS.
'We were given a mandate of one per cent per year, for three years — far less than any other union has received, far less than government gave its own employees.'- Vickie Kaminski, in her resignation letter
When the NDP took power, both sides were optimistic a fair offer would be made. But she said that never happened despite repeated attempts by herself and others.
In late October 2015, the deputy minister asked her to get everyone quickly back to the bargaining table. She said this was done based on a "promise of a reasonable mandate, akin to settlements with other unions and reflective of what we were accruing for this union's anticipated salary increase.
"The reason for getting negotiations re-established quickly was to avoid any embarrassment for (Premier Rachel Notley) when she attended the AUPE (annual general meeting) in October," she wrote.
But Kaminski said once both sides were back at the bargaining table, it became clear the NDP government would not allow AHS to make a reasonable offer.
"We were given a mandate of one per cent per year, for three years — far less than any other union has received, far less than government gave its own employees, and far less than we are accruing for wage settlements."
Vickie Kaminski

Political interference in Calgary ambulance-dispatch plan

Kaminski details how AHS had developed a business plan under the previous Tory government to end its contract as of April 2015 with the City of Calgary to provide ambulance-dispatch service.
AHS would instead provide an independent service similar to those across the rest of province, in line with what Kaminski said were the best practices for EMS dispatch across Canada.
The Tories, however, did not want the ambulance-dispatch issue to become a "provincial election football" so the plan to notify Calgary of the change was delayed until after the May 2015 election.
Carl Amrhein
In her letter, Kaminski said health deputy minister Carl Amrhein gave her specific directions verbally so there would not be a paper trail. (CBC)
Kaminski said after the election, Hoffman and her then deputy minister, Janet Davidson, confirmed the plan would proceed. She and Davidson's successor, Carl Amrhein, subsequently notified Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi, through a phone call, that the change was coming.
"The very next day, the government stopped us from moving this plan forward," Kaminski wrote.
"The Minister of Health is now dealing directly with Mayor Nenshi and, in our latest meeting, informed me that AHS will not be moving this forward in the immediate future despite the costs the organization is incurring (unused staff and space) and the fact that continuing with the current service arrangement with the City of Calgary is costing $6 million more than it would cost if provided in-house."
The government has publicly revealed the province had built a dispatch centre in Calgary to handle EMS calls separately from police and fire and is paying $60,000 in monthly rent since April 2015, although it is not in use yet.
But Kaminski, in her letter, said AHS leased the space for at least 20 years at an estimated cost of $750,000 a year. She said a "large number of staff" had already been hired.

Kaminski: political interference makes CEO job useless

Kaminski said in her resignation letter that she had built a professional reputation in health care in Canada for "taking on big challenges, doing the right things, and doing things right. I find myself in a position in Alberta that no longer allows me to perform that way."
'Therefore, before my professional reputation suffers irreparable harm, I have decided to leave.'- Vickie Kaminski, in her resignation letter
On the final page of her letter, Kaminski said the job she had been hired to perform as CEO no longer existed.
"Therefore, before my professional reputation suffers irreparable harm, I have decided to leave prior to the end of my three-year term by invoking the notice clause in my contract," she wrote.
By resigning midway through her three-year-contract, Kaminski, who was paid $540,000 a year, effectively forfeited another full year of salary in severance.
She is now chief transformation officer with South Australia Health in Adelaide, Australia.
AHS is still searching for her replacement.
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