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Support growing for residents and staff at youth agency in Sarnia area

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(BRIGHT’S GROVE) – Community leaders and families will join residents and workers from Huron House Boys’ Home for an event tomorrow in Bright’s Grove, just outside Sarnia. The HHBH Frontline Staff & Youth BBQ is in support of staff and youth.

DATE: Wednesday, May 9
TIME: 4:30 – 6 pm,
LOCATION: Mike Weir Park, 2354 Lakeshore Rd., Bright’s Grove

The workers are in a battle with their employer for modest wage increases and training. That’s what’s needed to ensure continued stability, structure, support and guidance for residents. As long-term employees, they are experienced in specialized support for youth with mental health challenges and other serious issues.

“Community leaders and Huron House frontline staff, residents, and families are working together to put mental health at the heart of the community,” says OPSEU President Warren (Smokey) Thomas, guest speaker at the event. “There’s a lot of support behind this fight for a first collective agreement.”

So far, the employer has offered negligible wage increases and no money for training. Similar centres with similar sources of funding have agreed to better terms than HHBH has offered. It’s not credible that HHBH can’t afford to keep the youth treatment centre funded to provide the much-needed and well-regarded services, says Scott Honke, a union representative for Huron House workers. Honke, a former resident, is a residential counselor at Huron House.

“The staff here are helping youth to become healthy, responsible men, husbands, and fathers,” says Honke. “Huron House has a good reputation and been successful over the decades. I can’t understand why the employer wouldn’t want to make sure we can continue to help residents go on to lead healthy, productive lives.”

More information:

Scott Honke 519.869.8759