​Last Friday, June 24, Providence Health Care welcomed 227 Food Services staff on their first day as employees of Providence. This change followed months of work done across Providence to transition and onboard staff at five PHC sites:

• 41 staff at Holy Family Hospital,
• 31 staff at Langara Residence,
• 46 staff at Mount Saint Joseph Hospital,
• 96 staff at St. Paul’s, and
• 13 staff at Youville Residence.

After nearly 20 years of contracting out to private companies, returning to public sector employment was a joyous day for Food Services staff, some who were working at Providence when services were privatized in the early 2000s, and are now returning.

Photo credit: Brian Smith, PHC Media Services.

Mikole David, Food Service Supervisor at St. Paul’s Hospital is looking towards the future:

“For me, joining PHC is an exciting yet natural prospect. I am excited about the idea of working under one of the renowned health authorities in BC, including the new experiences it will bring to my career. As someone who’s working in St Paul’s Hospital for a couple of years, it would be natural for us to be under the same health authority as the hospital itself, working together with other departments towards the goal of providing quality patient care.”

While Food Services staff have always been a part of our extended family, the move to repatriate these staff back to PHC will offer them better wages, benefits and job security.

“I am happy and excited to work with PHC, and thank you for all the support and benefits that PHC are providing,” said Lyn Dionglay, a Dietary Aide at St. Paul’s.

Speaking at Friday’s  welcome event at St. Paul’s , Sophie Chan, PHC’s Food Services Director, said:

“This transition to in-house Food Services will have many positive outcomes – for the 227 new Food Services staff joining us today, for the patients and residents in our care, and for the people who support them. Bringing Food Services into Providence means bringing people together; it means working more closely with all PHC staff, medical staff and those we serve, and it means expanding our PHC family.”

Evidence has shown that people who feel secure and safe in their jobs provide higher-quality care for people, and in turn, helps employers to attract and retain their staff.

“Masks can’t hide the smiles on these faces,” said Ronnie Nicolasora, Director of Membership Services for the Hospital Employees’ Union (HEU) that will represent transitioning Food Services staff.

Photo credit: Brian Smith, PHC Media Services.

“Providence Health Care values the close partnerships that we have built over the years with our food services staff, and we are pleased to welcome workers and services back into Providence,” said Fiona Dalton, President and CEO, in the BC Government news release.

“Food services workers are critical to ensuring the nutritional needs of those we serve are met throughout our hospitals and care homes. On behalf of everyone at Providence, we thank Food Services staff for their dedication to our shared work, and we recognize the important role food services has in improving the outcomes and experiences of countless patients, residents and families that they help each day.”

See more photos from the Welcome Event in the Photo Gallery on connect.

New look, same service

While there is no change to Food Services operations or service continuity, what is changing is a new look for Food Services.

As PHC staff, Food Services staff will wear PHC-issued scrub-like uniforms, similar to current PHC clinical staff uniforms, and some may have lab coats or aprons.

Environmental Services (EVS) comes back in-house this October 2022

PHC will continue to repatriate workers under Bill 47 over the next year, bringing more than 325 EVS workers in-house on Oct. 14, 2022. EVS repatriation will take place at the following PHC sites:

• Holy Family Hospital
• Mount Saint Joseph Hospital
• St. Paul’s Hospital (including Cardiac Care Clinic, Outpatient Dermatology Clinic and Foundry-Granville)
• St. John Hospice
• St. Vincent’s: Brock Fahrni
• St. Vincent’s: Langara
• Youville Residence