Striking Edmonton nursing care workers laid off

A west Edmonton seniors facility let go 20 nursing care workers who were entering their third month of a strike.

West Edmonton seniors' facility let go while trying to reach first contract

An Edmonton seniors facility is laying off than 20 workers who have been on strike for two months. 2:01

A west Edmonton seniors facility will let go more than 20 nursing care workers who were entering their third month of a strike.

Licenced Practical Nurse (LPN) Vicky Mulatris and 19 other nursing staff at Waterford Summerlea were told that because they lost a homecare contract with Alberta Health services, LPNs weren’t needed anymore.

"They're not paying us now," said Mulatris, "so we're just struggling why they're going to give us layoffs now."

The workers are among 65 at The Waterford of Summerlea seniors' home who walked off the job in April to back demands for a first contract.

The workers wanted the same pay as other company staff in Lethbridge.

Today the British Columbia company that owns the home, Chantelle Management, laid off the striking workers, something the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees (AUPE) calls illegal and unethical.

The layoffs, which will take effect on June 10, are a blatant attempt to bully the workers and break their resolve, AUPE President guy Smith said.

According to AUPE, the workers have been trying to reach a first collective agreement since joining the union in late 2011.

The AUPE now plans to file a complaint with the labour board, and representatives have also said the union wants to hold strike votes at Extendicare facilities around Alberta, which could result in over 1,000 workers walking off the job.

The Waterford is a 142-suite facility at 95th Avenue and 170th Street.