MEDIA RELEASE: Halman flip flops on protecting workers

Tim Halman, MLA for Dartmouth East, was a teacher and member of the Nova Scotia Teachers Union. He was part of their 2017 strike, and said he got into politics because: “he knew that he could not sit idly by and allow this (Liberal) government to continue to mistreat Nova Scotians.”

Today, Halman is the man who has decided that Administrative Professionals at the IWK and Nova Scotia Health (NSH) should be offered what amounts to a pay cut and will leave them amongst the lowest-paid health care workers in Atlantic Canada.

Halman serves as the Chair of the Treasury Board for the Houston Government. That is a powerful but not well-known group that meets in-camera and makes all the key decisions related to bargaining.

When Halman was a public sector worker, he said he was getting into politics to help protect people from harmful government policies. Now that he’s an elected official, his decisions are harming some of our lowest-paid health care workers. In other words, Halman is doing exactly what he said he would not do.

“Halman is treating health admin like they’re worth less, offering them a deal that amounts to a pay cut. Why does he now think it’s okay to mistreat them?” asked Sandra Mullen, President of NSGEU.

There are more than 5,000 administrative professionals working in hospitals and community care settings throughout Nova Scotia, performing critical tasks. They are the first point of contact with patients; manage registrations; control the switchboard and communications; ensure test labels are accurate; assign beds; share lab results with clinical staff; book appointments, transfers and admissions; order and receive supplies; manage payroll; and much more. Without these professionals and their labour, health care doesn’t work, and it’s time the employer and government returned to the table to offer a deal that acknowledges that.

Once an essential services plan is in place and the required two-week notice period has elapsed, thousands of health care workers across the province will be in a legal strike position.

These workers are represented by CUPE, NSGEU, and Unifor, who bargain together in the Council of Unions.


For more information, contact:

Karen MacKenzie, CUPE National Representative, Lead Negotiator, 902-890-0840

Holly Fraughton, NSGEU Communications Officer, 902-471-1781,

Shelley Amyotte, Unifor National Communications Representative, 902-717-7491,

Taylor Johnston, CUPE Atlantic Communications Representative,

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