WINNIPEG – The Healthcare for All coalition in Manitoba is composed of several organizations who advocate for equitable, barrier-free, publicly-funded healthcare access for all residents of Manitoba.

The Coalition will hold a press conference tomorrow morning to speak about their petitions which have garnered hundreds of signatures and are scheduled to be read in the Legislative Assembly of Manitoba by Members on behalf of the petitioners throughout the next year. This petition calls on the Government of Manitoba to extend provincial health care coverage to all residents in Manitoba, including migrant workers, international students, refugee claimants, and undocumented residents. The press conference will be held tomorrow Thursday, November 25th at 11:00 am – 11:30 am in the Bulman Student Centre adjacent to the University of Winnipeg Student Association offices. The centre is located in the basement of Riddell Hall and is accessible by elevator or stairs. The closest entrance is at 385 Spence Street.

This past summer Calvin Lugalambi, an international student, ended up in hospital for a medical emergency and contracted COVID-19. His medical bills totalled over $123,000, resulting in enormous personal debt as well as extreme stress on top of his physical health concerns.

“The pandemic has really brought to light the importance of public healthcare for migrant workers, international students, refugees, and undocumented residents. Healthcare is fundamental and should not be limited to certain individuals while leaving others out. With everything international students have to go through including lack of financial resources coupled with increasing tuition and others, the least the government could do is provide us with healthcare to take care of our health while going through all these troubles”, said Tolani Olanrewaju, UMSU International Students’ Representative .

Migrant workers in Manitoba need access to universal public health care coverage that is not based on their work permit, or the length of time of their permit. According to Diwa Marcelino with Migrante Manitoba, “Migrant workers fleeing poverty and exploitation think twice before advocating for their health, safety and rights at work because their healthcare coverage is tied to their job.”

The pandemic has shown us the ever growing need for everyone in Manitoba to have equitable access to healthcare irrespective of their citizenship status. Healthcare issues existed before the pandemic and they have been exacerbated by the pandemic, so it’s time for the Manitoba government to act and ensure all Manitobans have equitable access to healthcare.


Media Contact:

Karen Hamilton, Healthcare for All Manitoba

P: 204-926-7905| E :


Judith Oviosun, Canadian Federation of Students – Manitoba, Provincial Campaigns Coordinator

P: 431-388-8034 | E:

Diwa Marcelino, Migrante Manitoba

P: 204-218-7100 |

Tolani Olanrewaju , UMSU International Students’ Representative

P: 204-291-9472 | E:


University of Winnipeg
University of Winnipeg
University of Winnipeg