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Reclassification of CHRs to Primary Care Community Representatives

Audio file
Helen Iserhoff and Jennifer Pepabano talk about their new job titles on Miyupimaatisiiuun Tipaachimuwin (JBCCS)

The Cree Board of Health and Social Services of James Bay in collaboration with the CSN union has approved a reclassification affecting all 107 of its current Community Health Representatives (CHRs).


As part of the reclassification, all employees holding the CHR job title will be given the new job title of Primary Care Community Representative. With the new title comes a more advantageous salary scale, aligned with similar roles within the Quebec healthcare network.

Bertie Wapachee, Chair of CBHSSJB

"The CBHSSJB has evolved immensely since it was founded by Order-in-Council on April 20, 1978. Like any institution, we take pride in our history and advancements. It has been our responsibility to ensure our evolution is not only reflected in our organizational chart, but in our roles and responsibilities across the board. Today, we are pleased to announce and recognize the vital importance of PCCRs, formerly known as CHRs, in providing culturally safe care to community members and all residents of Region 18. On behalf of the Board of Directors and the entire CBHSSJB, we take this time to congratulate all PCCRs!"– Bertie Wapachee, Chairperson

CHRs, now Primary Care Community Representatives (PCCRs), have often been referred to as the backbone of the CBHSSJB’s culturally safe model of care. The role of CHR goes back to the origins of the CBHSSJB in 1978. As members of the community, they accompany and support clients and their families, helping people navigate the medical system. They see clients, update patient files and work in a multidisciplinary team with other professionals such as doctors and nurses. PCCRs explain health conditions and treatments to clients, provide diabetes education, and are active in bringing Miyupimaatisiiun awareness to the community and supporting public health initiatives. The PCCRs also help non-Indigenous workers understand the Cree culture and values to deliver culturally appropriate care.

"The reclassification reflects more accurately the knowledge and skills of these valued members of our primary care teams. It will help with recruitment and retention of PCCRs, now and in the years to come." – Daniel St-Amour, Executive Director

The reclassification was well received by the Board of Directors, which approved the change at a Special Meeting on April 19, 2021. PCCR salaries will be adjusted retroactive to April 1, 2021.

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