MUHC union members denounce budget cutbacks as a threat to public health

MONTREAL, Feb. 13, 2013 /CNW Telbec/ - Employees of the McGill University Health Centre are demonstrating at noon today to express their anger at the MUHC's apparent intention to balance its $115 million budget deficit on the backs of the public and its personnel.

Despite the troubling conclusions of a health ministry report published last December on governance rules and financial management, MUHC managers have planned cutbacks in sanitation and its most efficient programs. At the same time, the health centre categorically refuses to discuss improvements to its procurement system or the ratio of managers to employees, which is far higher than at other institutions.

"Not only has MUHC management decided to save money by eliminating a team that specializes in disinfecting spaces contaminated by C. difficile, but once again managers have decided to cut by half the time devoted to cleaning offices," said Paul Thomas, president of the MUHC Employees' Union (SECUSM-CSN). "I have no doubt that these poor decisions will endanger the health of our members and of the public."

Management has indicated it will continue to make cuts to a wide array of programs, without regard to their effectiveness or their importance to the public.

Employees are also demonstrating at the following MUHC institutions: the Royal Victoria Hospital, the Montreal Chest Institute, the Montreal Neurological Institute, Lachine Hospital, Montreal Children's Hospital, as well as at the MUHC Administration Centre in downtown Montreal.

The SECUSM-CSN, which is affiliated with the Fédération de la santé et des services sociaux (FSSS-CSN), represents about 4800 employees at the MUHC, including paratechnical personnel, auxiliary and trades services, office employees, technicians and administration professionals.

Founded in 1921, the Confédération des syndicats nationaux (CSN) is a labour organization that struggles for a society of solidarity, justice, equality and sustainability. To this end, the CSN takes part in many debates of interest to Quebec society. The CSN is composed of almost 2000 unions. The CSN represents more than 300,000 workers on a sectoral or professional basis in eight federations, as well as regionally via 13 central councils, primarily within Quebec.


For further information:

Confédération des syndicats nationaux

Richard Charles Hink, CSN-Communications, 514 404 5367

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