TORONTO, Sept. 23, 2011 /CNW/ - Approximately 3,000 members of the
Ontario Nurses' Association (ONA) - Case Managers, Placement
Coordinators, Nurse Practitioners and other health professionals from
10 of Ontario's 14 Community Care Access Centres (CCACs) are in the
process of taking strike votes in advance of their last week of
A strike would leave communities across the province with limited access
to health care services that these health professionals - including
registered nurses, nurse practitioners, registered practical nurses,
occupational and physiotherapists and social workers - arrange and
Should these services be withdrawn by a strike, there will be an
increase in backlogs in hospital emergency rooms, and surgical and
medical departments as health care employees are either not available
to arrange and coordinate home care services or as clients return to
emergency rooms when their case manager cannot assess their care needs.
Wait lists for long-term care beds will increase as placement
coordinators will not be able to proceed on placement and admissions
into vacant nursing home beds.
"ONA members at our CCACs want to continue to serve their patients and
clients, but the draconian concessions being demanded by employers are
simply unacceptable," says ONA President Linda Haslam-Stroud, RN.
"Our members work to ensure that the community receives home care
services," she says. "They connect our vulnerable with services they
need to stay healthy at home, preventing hospitalization. And they help
those who can no longer remain at home find places in long-term care.
Unfortunately, their employers are treating these valuable health
professionals who provide such vital services very disrespectfully,
despite the shortage of health care professionals and the stated goals
of the government to increase home care services."
Haslam-Stroud notes that while agreement has been reached on a number of
provisions, the membership issues of workload and professional
responsibility, sick leave, wages and access to personal protective
equipment should there be a pandemic are keeping the two sides from
reaching an agreement.
"Our members are dedicated to serving their clients in the community who
need their help to receive home care or a nursing home bed," says
Haslam-Stroud. "They are highly skilled, educated and knowledgeable and
the last thing they want is to be forced into a strike that will
withdraw and/or delay services to their clients. But the
often-shortsighted demands of the employers are preventing labour
CCAC members are holding strike votes prior to the last two days of
bargaining on September 26 and 27. Mediation is scheduled for September
28 and 29. The legal strike date is October 3.
ONA is the union representing 57,000 front-line RNs and allied health
professionals and more than 12,000 nursing student affiliates providing
care in Ontario hospitals, long-term care facilities, public health,
the community, industry and clinics.
SOURCE Ontario Nurses' Association
For further information:
| Ontario Nurses' Association || |
| Sheree Bond || (416) 964-1979, ext. 2430; cell: (416) 986-8240 |
| Melanie Levenson || (416) 964-1979, ext. 2369 |
www.ona.org; www.Facebook.com/OntarioNurses; www.Twitter.com/OntarioNurses