TORONTO, Sept. 27 /CNW/ - Today, protests will be held in five Ontario
cities to draw attention to the McGuinty government's health-care cuts and
privatization. Details on the events that will take place at those protests
are now being made available.
What: A large rally and march with music, speakers, and big
visuals: hundreds of pillowcases indicating bed cuts,
a large McGuinty puppet cutting down a hospital board,
and home-care nurses decked in red shirts to stop
Where: Protest will start at Metro Hall Square (Corner of
King and John Sts.) at 11 am.
Participants will march to Queen's Park (along
A rally will be held at Queen's Park at 1 pm.
Who Barb Barry, Muskoka Health Coalition
(Speakers): Cathy Carroll, Service Employees International Union
Terry Downey, Ontario Federation of Labour
Caroline Eagan, Toronto Health Coalition
Vern Edwards, Southern Georgian Bay Health Coalition
Doris Grinspun, Registered Nurses Association of
Helen Havlik, Petrolia City Council, Sarnia Health
Carolynn Ioannoni, Niagara Falls City Council, Chair
of Fight Back Committee
Natalie Mehra, Ontario Health Coalition
Patty Rout, Ontario Public Service Employees Union
Danica Rush, Ryerson Students for Medicare
Sid Ryan, Canadian Union of Public Employees
Jagtar Shergill, Brampton Health Coalition
Andy Summers, Ontario Nurses' Association
What: A rally, march, and barbeque, with music, speakers,
and large visuals: a hospital bleeding money and
McGuinty not listening.
Where: Protest starts at McBurney Park (Ordinance &
Alma Sts.) at 11 am.
Who Roy Brady, Peterborough Chapter of the Council of
Anne Clark, Ontario Nurses' Association
Irene Harris, Ontario Federation of Labour
Dave Lundy, Ontario Public Service Employees Union
Marie Morrell, local citizen and patient
Luis Rodriguez, Canadian Union of Public Employees
What: A rally, march, and barbeque, with speakers and music.
Where: Tom Davies Square (Brady & Minto Streets) at 11 am.
Who David Cheslock, Service Employees International Union
(Speakers): Henri Giroux, North Bay Health Coalition
Anne Marie, Sudbury Health Coalition
Yves Shank, Ontario Public Service Employees Union
What: A rally and march, with speakers.
Where: Protest will start at Paterson Park (May and
Milles Sts.) at 11 am.
Participants will march to MPP Bill Mauro's office
(240 South Syndicate Ave.)
A rally will be held at Bill Mauro's office starting
at 1 pm.
Who Jamie Loveday, Service Employees International Union
(Speakers): Wayne Samuelson, Ontario Federation of Labour
Jamie Tocker, Ontario Public Service Employees Union
What: A rally, march and leafleting, with speakers.
Where: Protest will start at Dieppe Park (Riverside Dr. and
Ferry St.) at 11 am.
Some participants will leaflet around the city.
A rally will be held at MPP Dwight Duncan's office
(2825 Lauzon Parkway, unit 211)
Who Bruce Dickie, CAW Local 2458
(Speakers): Gino Franche, Ontario Public Service Employees Union
Doug Hayes, Council of Canadians
Jim Kennedy, London Health Coalition.
Ian Nash, Paramedic, Service Employees International
Jeanne Soden, Ontario Nurses' Association
Dr. Susan Steigerwalt, American Physicians for a
National Health Program
Denise Sylvester, front-line long-term care worker
The Ontario Health Coalition is reacting to recent announcements which
reveal that the McGuinty government has reneged on election promises to bring
in minimum care standards to protect seniors in nursing homes and to stop
for-profit privatization. In addition, the McGuinty government has started a
round of hospital restructuring that is forcing the biggest cuts to hospital
services since the Harris era.
"McGuinty has budgeted less for hospitals' global budgets than the
inflation rate, meaning that there is not enough money to maintain the
existing range of services. We are now facing the most significant hospital
cuts in a decade," noted Natalie Mehra, Director of the Ontario Health
Coalition. "Ontario's hospitals already spend $100 per patient less than
hospitals in other provinces; we have the lowest average length of stay and we
staff at lower levels than the rest of Canada. We are tired of the shell-game
McGuinty is playing, hiding behind government-appointed LHINs while forcing
cuts. We have called this protest for our communities to stand up and refuse
to see one more service privatized or moved out of town," she said.
"Dalton McGuinty's choice to renege on his election promise means that
seniors and their nurses and careworkers will have to wait for proper
protection in nursing homes," added Mehra. "Home-care patients will continue
to suffer with for-profit privatization and competitive bidding destabilizing
their care. This weekend, we are sending a strong message to say, 'Enough is
enough'. It is time McGuinty started to listen to the public interest in
health care, rather than simply continuing with Harris-style for-profit
privatization and deregulation."
For further information:
For further information: Natalie Mehra, Director of the Ontario Health
Coalition, (416) 230-6402