PETERBOROUGH, ON, Sept. 6, 2011 /CNW/ - Peterborough Regional Health
Centre staff represented by the Ontario Nurses Association (ONA), the
Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) and the Ontario Public
Service Employees Union (OPSEU) picketed the constituency office of MPP
Jeff Leal this afternoon. Peterborough Regional Health Centre has
experienced deep cuts to its staffing complement, with the elimination
of more than 200 positions. As a result, waits for services have
lengthened, staff workloads are staggering and morale has collapsed.
"Many areas in the hospital have schedules that come out with "holes" in
the schedule meaning the staff on that shift are going to be short.
This has created poor morale as the nurses know they are coming in with
not enough RN's to care for the patients in their unit. This in turn
jeopardizes patient care and safety and makes the nurses feel that they
are undervalued. Having nursed for 25 years this is the worst that I
have seen staff morale," said ONA local president, Cheryl Osborne.
"Before the restructuring, staff had a sense of ownership and developed
strong relationships with patients as they were assigned to one routine
or area. Now there is a feeling of disengagement when routines and
locations changes constantly. Nurses are under staffed and they
struggle to provide the basic care to their patients in these
situations. We are concerned that the cuts are affecting patient
standards of care as staff morale plummets in the face of these
challenges," Laurie Hatton CUPE local president.
"Because of chronic understaffing and poor staff morale and out of
desperation we went to the Hospital Board Stewardship Committee asking
for their help in recognizing the severity of the staffing levels at
PRHC. Instead of helping us they redirected our concern to the Healthy
Hospital Committee! We now question the ability of the Board to oversee
the business of PRHC," said Linda Matteau, OPSEU local spokesperson.
The three unions are planning a number of activities through the
election period to draw attention to the crisis at the Peterborough
Regional Health Centre.
SOURCE Ontario Council of Hospital Unions (CUPE)
For further information:
Cheryl Osborne, ONA: 705-741-7209
Laurie Hatton, CUPE : 705-933-6629
Liinda Matteau, OPSEU: 705-761-3473