Resolution of the Human Rights Commission - The Auxiliary and the Jewish General Hospital reach a settlement with two ambulance technicians



    MONTREAL, April 12 /CNW Telbec/ - The Auxiliary and the Jewish General
Hospital (JGH) announced today that they have reached a settlement with an
ambulance technician and his colleague after they filed a complaint with the
Quebec Human Rights Commission regarding an event that took place in
February 2005 at the hospital's Café de l'Atrium. Since the hospital
management's responsibility is to ensure the well-being of its patients,
personnel and visitors, it mandated its lawyers to negotiate an amicable
settlement, rather than spend human and financial resources in a court trial.
    The Café de l'Atrium is a franchise operated by The Auxiliary, a group of
volunteers devoted to the well-being of the hospital's patients, and it is
exclusively reserved for the consumption of food bought on the premises. The
manager of the Café de l'Atrium, an employee of the franchise, maintains that
he offered the two technicians the option of eating their meals in a
designated lounge located elsewhere in the hospital, as is the usual practice
for visitors who wish to eat food brought from the outside.
    According to the settlement, The Auxiliary agreed to pay the ambulance
technicians $7,500 each. A court trial would have cost much more. The
agreement was reached without admission of fault or responsibility.
    "The JGH is attentive to the needs of its patients, its employees and its
visitors, continually seeking solutions to improve the quality of care people
receive and to accommodate them as best as possible," said Mr. Henri Elbaz,
Executive Director of the JGH. "Since the space next to the Café de l'Atrium
was large enough, we decided to build a new section for visitors, patients and
employees who wish to eat food brought from outside the hospital, whether it
is kosher or not."
    The new section is in addition to existing areas where it is possible to
eat food brought in from outside the hospital. Over the years, the JGH has set
up numerous areas where patients and their families can eat the food of their
choice, regardless of whether or not it is kosher. Furthermore, employees have
access to several staff lounges where they could eat any type of food. The
Pavilion A Lounge, which is open to visitors, patients and employees, was
recently enlarged and offers non-Kosher vending machines.
    The JGH was founded by the Jewish community in order to serve the people
of Montreal and Quebec, regardless of race, religion, language or financial
means. Since then, the JGH has become one the largest hospitals in Quebec and
the most multicultural of them all. Two-thirds of its patients are non-Jewish.
    "The JGH is an institution that is a part of our public health network.
Its mission is to provide the highest possible quality of care to all
patients," explained Mr. Elbaz. "We prove on a daily basis that it is possible
to respond to the needs of all our patients, regardless of their religious,
linguistic or cultural backgrounds. We have the firm intention of continuing
to pursue this policy of openness and respect for human rights for the benefit
of all Montrealers and Quebecers."

    About The Auxiliary

    Since 1936, The Auxiliary has been active as a non-profit organization,
raising essential funds for the Jewish General Hospital through its businesses
and special fund-raising endeavours. It also provides a broad range of
innovative programs and services to improve the quality of care, as well as
the humanization of care, that patients receive.

    About the Jewish General Hospital

    Since 1934, the Sir Mortimer B. Davis - Jewish General Hospital, a
McGill University teaching hospital, has provided "Care for All," serving
patients from diverse religious, linguistic and cultural backgrounds in
Montreal, throughout Quebec and beyond. As one of the province's largest
acute-care hospitals, the JGH has achieved a reputation for excellence in key
medical specialties by continually expanding and upgrading its facilities for
clinical treatment and teaching, as well as research at the Lady Davis
Institute for Medical Research. To learn more about the JGH, visit www.jgh.ca.




For further information:

For further information: Glenn J. Nashen, Director; Suzanne Gold,
Communications Specialist, Public Affairs and Communications, Jewish General
Hospital, (514) 340-8222, extension 4120, sgold@jgh.mcgill.ca,
communications@jgh.mcgill.ca, www.jgh.ca

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Jewish General Hospital

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