The Hospital Employees’ Union says the Vancouver Island Health Authority should block the sale of the Wexford Creek care home and stop the layoff of staff.

Wexford Creek staff learned Friday the Good Samaritan Society plans to sell the eight-year old facility to an undisclosed buyer, and in preparation for the sale will be contracting out all staff.

About 140 care aides, nurses, cleaners, recreation aides, dietary staff, maintenance workers and others will work their last day on September 30th.

 Health Employees Union secretary-business manager Jennifer Whiteside says layoffs like this seem to be the new normal, with contracting out, contract flipping and ownership changes undermining quality, stable care for seniors across Vancouver Island.

Whiteside says the health authority should stop the sale, stop the layoffs and put the facility under direct administration.

Wexford Creek is one of seven publicly funded long-term care facilities that opened in 2008 as part of a major expansion of residential care on Vancouver Island.

But in the last three years, five of those facilities, representing 85 per cent of the new residential care beds, were sold to new owners.