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Joint trusteeship achieved for the Employee Benefit Plans

Nov 13, 2023

Categories: Employee Benefits, News

An agreement several years in the making will ensure both the unions representing health-care system employees and the employers have an equal presence on the Board of Trustees that oversees plan members’ benefits.

The Board of Trustees will meet bi-monthly.
The Board of Trustees will meet bi-monthly.

The employee benefit plan trusts, administered by 3sHealth, provide benefits to 46,000 health-care employees and 20,000 retirees across Saskatchewan.

In October, all union and employer stakeholders participating in the benefit plans achieved joint governance. There are now five union Trustees and five employer Trustees on the board. The Trustees have a fiduciary duty to act in the best interest of the beneficiaries of the plans with the newly amended Trust Agreements providing guidance to the Trustees.

“The Board of Trustees is responsible for the financial health and stewardship of the benefit plans on which health-care employees rely,” said Chair of the Joint Board of Trustees Karen Knelsen. “After the significant collaboration, negotiation, and trust it has taken to achieve joint trusteeship, we are in the strongest possible position to maintain the plans into the future.”

“This is an important achievement for all plan members,” said newly appointed Vice-chair Russell Doell. “The plans provide significant benefits and help to ‘take care of the caregivers.’ The Employee Benefit Plans Joint Board of Trustees now reflects equal appointments of union and employer Trustees. This kind of joint trusteeship is the best practice model, and I am pleased that all parties involved now have an equal footing.”

The new Joint Board of Trustees held its first meeting on October 12. The Trustees elected the chair and vice-chair positions at the meeting.

The Employee Benefit Plans Board of Trustees consists of the following members: 

  • Chair: Karen Knelsen
  • Vice-chair: Russell Doell (SEIU-West)
  • Al Boutin (HSAS)
  • Andrew Cartmell
  • Arnie Shaw
  • Audrey Yaremy (SGEU)
  • Dave Jackson
  • Dean Biesenthal
  • Denise Dick (SUN)
  • Judy Henley (CUPE) 

The Board of Trustees will meet bi-monthly.

If you have questions about your benefit plan, call 3sHealth at 1.866.278.2301 or email

Get in touch: If you would like more information, please email with your request. Thank you for reading this article.