Today, the Provincial Government put forward its 2023 Budget. It will take us some time to analyze the budget, the line-by-line impacts, and do follow-up with various departments. The following serves as a very brief overview and initial analysis.
There are no major cuts, closures, or service reductions (at a macro level) announced in this budget (although NAPE will need to dig deeper into the details). Funding across many departments either remains stable or has been increased.
No layoffs we announced in the budget.
More details on the budget can be found here: https://www.gov.nl.ca/budget/2023/
NOTE: This is an analysis of impact on NAPE members and not an analysis of the budget as a whole (ie. No analysis of cost-of-living initiatives).
- $3.9 Billion in total health funding, which represents over $300M in new funding over last year
- $9M for the consolidation of the road ambulance service into a single, integrated service with centralized dispatch.
This represents a major shift – one NAPE has been actively calling and fighting for. Details are forthcoming but we look forward to being actively engaged in this process to ensure that it benefits the various EMS workers, both public and private, across the province.
The Air Services integration has been left out of this budget as a priority issue – this is concerning to us and something that we will be following up on.
- $1M increase in the Medical Transportation Assistance Program (MTAP) which will now be administered by a standalone Department of Labrador Affairs.
We will immediately engage with government about this transition. Initial discussions are there will be no job losses for our members as a result of this transfer.
- $500,000 to expand midwifery services
- $15 million towards a health information system
- $9.3M for community care home professionals who support self-managed care in the home
- $6.1M for personal care home professionals
- $7.7M for health care professionals who support self managed care
NOTE: For these three points – we are seeking further information on these vague details.
- $23M for recruitment and retention of healthcare professionals (no details)
- Adding a new medical flight specialist team for HVGB.NOTE: we are checking on this to see the impact on our Air Services members.
- $7.8M for planning and procurement of a replacement for St. Clare’s / Cardiovascular and Stroke Institute
- Nothing specific on home care (we will follow up for more info)
Healthcare is under tremendous pressure, workers are exhausted. Workers need additional supports and resources now so they can provide the level of care that the people of this province need and deserve.
Recruitment efforts are welcome and needed but we need to also do more to retain workers in our system by improving work life balance, supports, staffing, etc.
Healthcare workers who have sacrificed so much over the past three years need immediate action – resources, staffing, and resources.
MEMORIAL UNIVERSITY/COLLEGE OF THE NORTH ATLANTIC
- $69M for CNA operating grant – up ~ $3M over previous year budget
- MUN funding cut by ~$14M
Funding cuts for Memorial University of $68 million over 5 years, was announced in last years budget. The MUN budget has been cut by approximately $14M in year one of this plan. These cuts have a real impact on our members, students, enrolment, etc…
College of the North Atlantic sees its budget increased slightly.
Student Assistant funding allocation is up from last year by approximately $1M on the budgeted amount.
Increase of $8M over last year’s budget for ferry operations.
$3.5M increase over previous budget
NOTE: $22M revenue is noted in the budget which we believe means the sale of the damaged water bomber. We are seeking more information on this.
JUSTICE AND CORRECTIONS
The budget includes $7.3 million for a replacement of the HMP.
$5.7M for the extension of the Labrador Correctional Centre in HVGB
$1.1M additional funding for adult corrections over last year.
While there are vague references to aging in place, there is no specific funding, policies or proposals regarding home care even though this work is crucial to our communities and to reducing stress and strain on our healthcare systems.
This is a priority area for our union with government as it relates to senior care, ageing in place, and the overall healthcare system.
Many of the positive funding announcements made in this budget are a result of the work and pressure that workers, their unions, and the public have put on the government.
NEXT STEPS – LOOKING FORWARD
In the coming days and weeks, your union will be seeking further details and answers to questions around the specifics.
We will continue to keep pressure on this government to continue to invest in workers, public services, and communities that put workers and their families first.
Please stay tuned for more updates and information in the coming days/weeks.