HSA Convention wraps up, Avery re-elected as HSA president

Val Avery, a physiotherapist from Royal Jubilee Hospital in Victoria, was re-elected Friday at HSA’s annual 2019 Convention for another two-year term.

“I have your backs. I am committed to working on your behalf, very diligently, day in and day out,” said Avery to delegates during her acceptance speech on April 5.  “We need to work together, and the more engaged members are in this union, the stronger we are going to be.”

Avery has been president of HSA since 2013. Prior to 2013, she served for four years as HSA’s vice-president. Avery defeated contender Joseph Sebastian, current HSA Region 4 director and a medical radiation technologist from Vancouver General Hospital.

Avery will join 10 regional directors to form HSA’s 2019-2020 Board of Directors. Incoming directors Becky Packer (Region 1), Carla Gibbons (Region 5), and Brittany Sanders (Region 9) will replace Anne Davis, John Christopherson, and Janice Morrison on the board. HSA thanks the outgoing directors for their service to HSA.

HSA’s Board of Directors re-elected Region 3 Director Cheryl Greenhalgh to serve as HSA’s secretary-treasurer, and Region 10 Director Mandi Ayers was elected to serve as HSA vice-president, each for one-year terms.  

The HSA 2019-2020 Board of Directors is:

President – Val Avery
Region 1 – Becky Packer
Region 2- Derrick Hoyt
Region 3- Cheryl Greenhalgh (Secretary-Treasurer)
Region 4 – Joe Sebastian
Region 5 – Carla Gibbons
Region 6 – Nancy Hay
Region 7 – Jas Giddha
Region 8 – Cherylee Hylands
Region 9 – Brittany Sanders
Region 10 – Mandi Ayers (Vice-President)

HSA’s 2019 Convention took place from April 4 to 5 in Vancouver. Delegates spent two full days debating resolutions that will guide the union’s direction for the year ahead. Members arrived ready to work and readily engaged in respectful and passionate discussion.

Attendees also had the chance to hear from Laird Cronk, president of the BC Federation of Labour, on the efforts of the larger labour movement to address needed reforms to the Employment Standards Act and the BC Labour Relations Code.

The Minister of Health, Adrian Dix, addressed delegates on Friday afternoon. He spoke about the reforms underway to improve primary care, reduce surgical wait times, and build needed infrastructure across the province. He also spoke about addressing the social determinants of health. He said that reducing poverty, building housing, and enhancing services are all critical to building healthy people and communities.

It was a thoughtful and valuable few days, and HSA thanks all the delegates for their commitment to the union and each other. The resolutions that were passed will now set the direction for the year ahead.