June 13-17 is Public Services Week in Canada. Coast to coast to coast, it’s a chance for Canadians to acknowledge the valuable contributions made by workers in the public service. Public services are central to the social and economic fabric of our communities, our province and our country.
Each and every one of us benefits from the contributions made by public services workers every day. They provide health care, education, social services and keep us safe. They safeguard our water, our trees and our environment.
However, it is not enough to simply commend these hard working women and men. We need to acknowledge that far too many public workplaces are under-resourced and understaffed. For more than a decade B.C.’s public service workers have been told to “do more with less”. This is unsustainable and public services have suffered. In too many ministries and government agencies there are simply not enough frontline staff to do the work. There is also a chronic shortage of administrative staff who backstop their work.
So, as we commend the people who deliver important public services, every day of the year, in every part of our province, let us also commit to work together to rebuild these services. That’s good for our members, good for the people who rely on quality public services, and it is good public policy.
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