Health Sciences Association of Alberta

The world is full of people you must rely on, especially when it comes to your health.

Thatʼs why all our members are well-trained, highly skilled experts. HSAA represents Alberta’s Paramedics, Dialysis Technicians, Cardiovascular Perfusionists, Psychologists, Mental Health Therapists and Pharmacists, just to name a few. Together, we are the 240 health sciences disciplines that ensure you get exactly what you need.

History

HSAA was organized in 1971-1972 by 11 paramedical technical and professional members who were reluctant to become a minority group within one of the large, existing labour unions. Their training, certification, and professional ethics suggested they had a community of interest with other health-care workers and they decided to establish an independent union that would be subject to their control and direction.
George C. Hall was instrumental in the formation of HSAA and became its first executive director. His efforts were critical in helping it become the well-respected participant in today’s Alberta’s labour scene.

In 1972, a group of paramedical technical employees at the Misericordia Hospital in Edmonton became the first bargaining unit represented by HSAA. The Canadian Red Cross was the first non-hospital bargaining unit, certified in 1974. The first private, for-profit employer unit was organized at Calgary Medical Laboratories in 1975 and in 1995, HSAA certified its first community health support unit at the Barons-Eureka-Warner Health Units.

In 2003, HSAA became the Alberta component of the National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE), a federation of public service unions from across Canada. Through this affiliation, HSAA joined the Canadian Labour Congress that represents more than 3.3 million workers and the Alberta Federation of Labour representing workers in Alberta. We are also actively involved with the various District Labour Councils in Alberta.

Our current president, Mike Parker, shifted into his role in August of 2016 after 21-year President, Elisabeth Ballermann, resigned her position to become Secretary-Treasurer of NUPGE. Trudy Thomson took over the office of Vice President just weeks later. They lead the 18-member team called the Board of Directors, the elected representatives of the membership from five districts.

Today, HSAA represents approximately 25,000 paramedical technical, paramedical professional and general support employees in more than 240 health-care disciplines.

Position Statements

The mission of HSAA is to enhance the quality of life of its members and society. To better understand our positioning, click the link below for our detailed documents.

Strategic
Plan

This statement serves as a focal point for all of our union’s activities and conveys a concrete yet unrealized vision for HSAA as we continue to look out for the health of Albertans.

The
Constitution

The Constitution set forth in the linked document represents the collective will of our membership and details the basis upon which our Union functions.

Taking Action

HSAA remains actively involved in supporting a larger community of concerned citizens that believe collaboration, education and cooperation are the best ways to ensure positive policy change for our province.

Save our Backs

Ensuring the health, safety and wellbeing of Alberta’s health care workers, and the patients they serve, requires ongoing due diligence.

Pay Before You Pump

Tell the government to act NOW. Alberta needs pay-before-you-pump legislation to stop more needless deaths.

World OT Day

Occupational Therapy Day has become an important date in the OT calendar that promotes and celebrates the profession internationally.

Board of Directors

HSAA is governed by a board of directors which establishes policy and directs the operation of the union. The president and vice-president of HSAA are elected by the membership every two years. HSAA members in the South, Central and North districts each elect two board members. The Edmonton and Calgary districts each elect five board members. District board members serve three-year terms.

There are three district advisors (one each for Edmonton, Calgary and North/Central/South) who each serve a two-year term and are elected by the Board of Directors.

The president, vice-president and district advisors form an Advisory Committee, which is responsible for carrying on the business of HSAA between meetings of the board and for recommending policy initiatives. Several standing and ad hoc committees perform various functions. Their members are selected on an annual basis.

Executive Officers

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Michael ParkerPresident
Trudy ThomsonVice President

District Advisors

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Laurel JacksonDistrict Advisor - Calgary
Kristopher MoskalDistrict Advisor - Edmonton
Jason SoklofskeDistrict Advisor - North/Central/South

Calgary District Board Members

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Leanne AlfaroCalgary
Travis AsplundCalgary
Laurel JacksonDistrict Advisor - Calgary
Heather NormandeauCalgary
Faika SatterthwaiteCalgary

Central District Board Members

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Scott BudgellCentral
Christine ChambersCentral

Edmonton District Board Members

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Kristopher MoskalDistrict Advisor - Edmonton
Jean-Rene BéreubéEdmonton
Donna FarquharsonEdmonton
Evan StratichukEdmonton
Yvonne WhitingEdmonton

North District Board Members

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Kaitlin NiksicNorth
Scott MacDougallNorth

South District Board Members

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Cameron KienzleSouth
Jason SoklofskeDistrict Advisor - North/Central/South

HSAA is part of the “House of Labour,” which includes those unions that jointly and cooperatively affiliate to the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC) and work together to educate, do research and advocate for working people in Canada.

We affiliate to the CLC through the National Union of Public and General Employees (NUPGE) of which we are the Alberta component. NUPGE is a federation of provincial unions that primarily represent workers in the provincial public service.

In Alberta, we belong to the Alberta Federation of Labour (AFL) that represents the provincial components of the national unions that make up the CLC. Together we advocate for progressive change for workers at the provincial level.

HSAA is also active in the various District Labour Councils (DLCs) that advocate for workers on a municipal level. In Alberta, there are active DLCs in Edmonton, Calgary, Wood Buffalo, Yellowhead, Red Deer, Lethbridge and Medicine Hat.

In Alberta, HSAA sponsors a number of research and advocacy organizations on an ongoing basis. They include the Parkland Institute that studies economic, social, cultural, and political issues facing Albertans and Canadians, using the perspective of political economy, Public Interest Alberta (PIA) , a province-wide organization focused on education and advocacy on public interest issues, Friends of Medicare (FOM) , an advocacy group that focuses on protecting and expanding the universal coverage of the Medicare umbrella and the need to ensure services are not just publicly funded, but publicly delivered and Next Up (Calgary and Edmonton) , which is a leadership program for young people committed to environmental and social justice.

Annually, HSAA also sponsors various humanitarian organizations that do work domestically and/or abroad where the need arises. In the past we have sponsored people affected by the Slave Lake and Wood Buffalo fires, the Southern Alberta floods, devastation from earthquakes, typhoons and hurricanes in a number of countries and have sponsored a refugee family to Canada.

HSAA also supports a number of other groups that are concerned with labour issues including the Alberta Labour History Institute, the Alberta Workers’ Health Centre, the Aspen Foundation for Labour Education and the Workers’ Resource Centre.

Media Contact

If you have questions, we’d love to hear from you.