KGH workers gear up for fight to keep hospital under local control

    Town hall meeting being planned to tackle "turbulent" time for KGH

    KINGSTON, ON, July 16 /CNW Telbec/ - Workers at the Kingston General
Hospital are gearing up for the fight to keep their hospital under local
control as the province moves to put it under supervision by the man who
investigated the facility.
    "If Graham Scott is planning on coming in here and cutting services and
jobs, we'll fight him all the way," pledged Louis Rodrigues, President of the
Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) 1974, which represents front-line
health care workers at the hospital.
    "But if Scott wants to restore local control of this hospital - including
putting in place a new board chair and CEO who reflects the community's desire
to maintain services - then we will work with him," Rodrigues said.
    "This is not about getting Joe de Mora's job back," Rodrigues said. "This
is about making sure that democracy in health care - not provincial fiat -
prevails in Kingston."
    Rodrigues said that a planned judicial review of Scott's report, which
led to the province's appointment of a supervisor, and in part to De Mora's
dismissal, would not proceed at this time.
    "We thought it better to put our resources into working with the
community to improve democratic governance at KGH than to pursue legal options
at this time," Rodrigues said. "For starters, we are organizing a Town Hall
meeting on the whole situation at KGH and how we can get best organized, and
we're inviting all members of the public to join us."
    The planning for the Town Hall meeting has started, Rodrigues said,
adding that the date and other details will be announced soon.
    "We will be watching like hawks to make sure not one service and not one
job gets cut in this turbulent time at KGH," Rodrigues said. "We must make
sure that the community gets served by KGH, not shafted by the province."

For further information:

For further information: Louis Rodrigues, President, CUPE 1974, (613)
531-1319 (C); David Robbins, CUPE Communications, (613) 878-1431 (C)

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