8 years of provincial budget cuts have left Hamilton hospitals overcrowded, without any capacity to deal with a surge in patients

Hamilton, Ont. Hamilton hospitals are having difficulty coping with a surge in patients, “ a sadly predictable outcome of 8 years of provincial Liberal real budget cuts to our hospitals “ says Dave Murphy, president of CUPE local 7800, which represents over 4,000 staff at Hamilton Health Science Centre. “ We have the fewest hospital beds in Ontario of any province in Canada, fewest staff for those beds and absolutely no surge capacity”.

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“Why is your government laying us off Mr. Thibeault?” Laid off hospital laundry workers will ask at Wednesday 4 p.m. Sudbury rally

SUDBURY, ON — With Sudbury’s unemployment rate high, laid off hospital laundry workers are asking Sudbury MPP Glenn Thibeault “why his government is laying them off and moving their jobs to Hamilton” at a rally Wednesday November 2, 2016 at 4 p.m. at the MPP’s Sudbury office 555 Barry Downe Road.

40 Sudbury Hospital Services (SHS) laundry workers’ jobs are being eliminated because the government has told Health Sciences North, which owns SHS, to transfer the cleaning of dirty hospital linens to a laundry service in southern Ontario.

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1000 hospital staff travel great distances to Kingston rally for end to funding freeze choking Ontario hospitals

Kingston, ON – 1,000 hospital staff from across Ontario will rally on Thursday, October 27, 2016 at Kingston General Hospital (KGH) calling for an end to Ontario’s underfunding of hospital care.

Ontario has fallen far behind other provinces on hospital spending since the Liberals were elected provincially in 2003. The province has been cutting hospital budgets in real terms for 8 years.

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Laid off hospital laundry staff face of Sudbury’s high unemployment, appeal to MPP to “keep jobs local”

SUDBURY, ON — With stubbornly high unemployment, Sudbury can’t afford any more job loss, say laid off Sudbury Hospital Services laundry workers. Following a brief meeting with Sudbury MPP Glenn Thibeault at a downtown coffee shop last weekend, the hospital laundry staff renewed their appeal for him to intervene and keep jobs local. They will be taking their call for help to keep their hospital laundry jobs, directly to Thibeault’s doorstep on Wednesday, November 2 with a rally at the Sudbury MPP’s area office.
 
Health Sciences North (HSN) which owns Sudbury Hospital Service announced recently it was taking its hospital laundry business to an operation in Hamilton. As a consequence, 40 (both unionized and not) Sudbury Hospital Services employees will lose their jobs.
 
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Freeze Sudbury hospital laundry contract until investigation clears up questions about the integrity of murky process

SUDBURY, ON — With increasing scrutiny on the outcome of shared hospital services, questions are being raised about the “integrity of the process” used in awarding the hospital laundry contract to an out-of-Sudbury provider.
Aside from what Health Sciences North (HSN) has publicly said about the new contract, there is “very little disclosure about the ‘request for proposals’ process used and whether an environmental impact study was done on trucking dirty laundry hundreds of kilometers away and back. Until there is a thorough investigation completed into the integrity of the tender process, we’re calling for an immediate freeze on this contract, that’s resulted in 40 local workers losing their jobs,” says Michael Hurley president of the Ontario Council of Hospital Unions (OCHU/CUPE).
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As Health Ministers from Across Canada Meet to Negotiate Health Accord Advocates Set Out Criteria to Measure Success

Toronto – Months of sparring in the media may come to an end this week as Health Ministers from across Canada meet to discuss a new Health Accord. This morning, representatives of the Canadian & Ontario Health Coalitions, Canadian Doctors for Medicare and the Council of Canadians gathered outside the King Edward hotel where Health Ministers from across Canada are meeting. The public interest advocates outlined the criteria required to protect and improve public health care for all Canadians in a new Health Accord and stated that they would measure any proposed deal against these criteria.
 
“Canadians need our federal and provincial leaders to pull together to make concrete commitments to improve access to care for Canadians in a new Health Accord,” noted Adrienne Silnicki, national coordinator of the Canadian Health Coalition. “An agreement to national standards is essential, including commitments by the provinces to eliminate user fees for patients in private clinics and to expand capacity in the public health care system. We are encouraged by the recent promise to abolish extra user fees for patients in Quebec. The same must be done in other provinces.”
 
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Support for laid off Sudbury laundry workers growing, community rally set for Tuesday 11:30 a.m.

SUDBURY, ON — Sudbury laundry workers who received layoff notices last week and local jobs, “are collateral damage” of the Ontario Liberals’ continuing plan to underfund hospitals, says Michael Hurley the president of the Ontario Council of Hospital Unions (OCHU).
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Plainte à la Commission des relations de travail de l'Ontario après le renvoi de militants syndicaux par Montfort Renaissance

OTTAWA, le 14 oct. 2016 /CNW/ - Le Syndicat canadien de la fonction publique (SCFP) a porté plainte pour pratiques déloyales de travail contre l'organisme Montfort Renaissance à la suite du licenciement par ce dernier de trois dirigeants syndicaux. La plainte a été déposée auprès de la Commission des relations de travail de l'Ontario.

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March and rally tomorrow to protest cuts to cleaning at Espanola hospital

Espanola, ON — A march and rally will take place tomorrow (October 12, 2016) to draw attention to the cuts to cleaning at the Espanola Regional Hospital and Health Centre. The hospital has announced the cut of almost 4,000 hours of cleaning annually.
The march will begin at 11:30 a.m. at the Legion at 370 Annette Street, in Espanola and proceed to the Espanola Regional Hospital and Health Centre 825 McKinnon Drive, where the rally will take place.
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Ontarians are not turkeys, so why would the provincial Liberals try to pull a fast one with our health records on Thanksgiving weekend?

TORONTO, Oct. 10, 2016 /CNW/ - "Ontarians are not turkeys and their private health records are confidential, containing information that should not be plucked for its potential asset value to the provincial Liberal government," says Michael Hurley, the president of the Ontario Council of Hospital Unions/CUPE (OCHU). "It is undemocratic to try and slide this major policy shift under the radar while many Ontarians are focused on celebrating Thanksgiving with their families and friends."

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Provincial funding cuts to blame for situation at Bruyère that shortchanges Ottawa hospitals by $312 million annually

Ottawa, ON — Ottawa’s Liberal MPPs are being urged to stand up for local hospital’s like Elisabeth Bruyère which is struggling with eight consecutive years of provincial budget cuts and a change in the funding formula which ramps down funding. Brian Grant, president of Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) 4540 today said, the “intense scrutiny” on the hospital’s Behavioural Services Unit by the area Local Health Integration Network (LHIN), is “micromanagement and unwarranted under a provincial funding regime that’s cut Bruyère’s budget by 20 per cent (in real terms) over the last four years alone.”


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LTC residents with dementia need action, more hands-on care not another provincial consultation

LONDON, ON – A provincial consultation on dementia care announced yesterday by the Ontario government “looks good on paper. But it’s yet another stall and a tactic to delay action on providing tens of thousands of long-term care residents and home care patients living with dementia, the higher level of care they need today, not down the road,” say registered practical nurses (RPNs) and personal support workers (PSWs) in London this week attending their annual conference.

Nearly 7 in 10 residents in Ontario long-term care homes have some form of cognitive impairment, thousands of them are living with dementia.

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Provincial supervisor for Brockville hospital a distraction for real problem of government underfunding

Toronto, Ont. – The appointment of a provincial supervisor for Brockville General Hospital (BGH), a Mike Harris strong-arm tactic that the Ontario Liberals once railed against, is a “surface distraction from the real problem; provincial underfunding of our hospitals, including BGH, that is causing deficits,” the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) charged today.
Reports suggest that the hospital borrowed $5 million in addition to a $4 million deficit. Read More...

Poll finds over 86% oppose cuts to Kingston hospitals, 92% support hospital funding increase, exceedingly low support for Liberals’ changes to hospital care

KINGSTON, ON — Approval among Kingston residents for provincial Liberals’ changes to hospital care is exceedingly low, a poll released today shows. Polling of 700 Kingston residents conducted earlier this September probed support for provincial government hospital reforms, hospital use and admission. Respondents’ attitudes on hospital cuts, closing a hospital and private out of hospital clinics were also measured.
 
With the proposed merger of Kingston General Hospital (KGH) and Hotel Dieu Hospital “we and others are concerned ‘merger’ is code for more patient care and bed and program cuts,” says Mike Rodrigues the president of Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) 1974, front line staff at KGH. The poll, Rodrigues adds, shows “there is no appetite for that. Nor is there support for closing a hospital.”
 

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Union will discuss Minister of Health’s response to request to review Pembroke Regional Hospital’s contracting of sterilization of surgical instruments

Pembroke, ON- CUPE will hold a media conference on September 16, 2016 at 10:00 a.m. at its offices on 380 Isabella Street in Pembroke, to talk about the response of the Ministry of Health to the request that it intervene in the contracting-out of sterilization of surgical instruments at Pembroke Regional Hospital.

Simone Burger, president of CUPE local 1502, which represents staff at the Pembroke Regional Health Centre and Michael Hurley, president of the Ontario Council of Hospital Unions/CUPE will attend.

In May, CUPE asked the Minister of Health, the Hon. Dr. Eric Hoskins, to review the decision of Pembroke Regional Hospital to enter a 5-year contract for the reprocessing and sterilization of its surgical instruments to SteriPro in Mississauga. Trillium Health Partners, which comprises the major Credit Valley and Mississauga hospitals recently ended its relationship with SteriPro and brought sterilization of instruments back in house.

The Ministry of Health responded to the union last week. Read More...