We need PUBLIC university hospital centres, and we need them now!

    MONTREAL, April 6 /CNW Telbec/ - For many years, the Confédération des
syndicats nationaux has denounced the use of public-private partnerships for a
number of reasons, among them the delays and costs engendered, as well as the
loss of public expertise and weakening of the State that they incur. Other
unfortunate consequences of government succumbing to the lure of the private
sphere, observed elsewhere in the world, are decreases both in the quality of
services available to the population and in the working conditions of those
providing those services.
    The CSN represents close to 10, 000 people at the CHUM and MUHC who work
with great dedication each and every day: paratechnical personnel, auxiliary
and support services, skilled trades personnel, office personnel, technicians
and administrative professionals. They comprise the largest group of employees
working in these centres.
    The public has heard very little about their point of view. Yet they
provide services that are essential to the delivery of good medical care.
However, hundreds of them are afraid of losing their jobs and are worried
about the quality of care and services that will be available to the
    For example, at the CHUM, in spite of repeated requests by employees, the
functional and technical plan has not been made public. While there is talk of
expanding the parking lot, it seems that inside the building there isn't any
space for kitchens! Moreover, it is specified in the MUHC functional and
technical plan that 65 % of the meals on the menu will be prepared outside the
establishment, by private enterprise. And again, a central kitchen for meal
preparation is not planned for the Glen site.

    Innovation - that's public!

    We're presenting a challenge to Minister Bolduc and the local
administrations of the CHUM and MUHC. The employees want to play an active
part in making sure these centres are built as quickly as possible and in the
best interests of Quebec's population and those who will receive care within
these centres. We firmly believe that the solution is a public one, as much
for financing and construction as for administration and delivery of care and

    We ask:

    - the government to renounce the PPP formula for the CHUM and the MUHC as
      it has already led to its share of delays and additional costs;
    - the government and the CHUM and MUHC administrations to establish a
      task force to find an innovative public solution for the kitchens in
      both institutions;
    - the CHUM administration to make its functional and technical plans
      public, immediately and throughout the process, and to consult
      employees regarding construction and services that will be offered by
      the institution;
    - the government to take into account future proposals put forth both by
      workers and by citizens who use these services, as they are the ones
      best informed about the health and social services network and the
      challenges it presents. Much better informed, in fact, than the PPP's
      supposed specialists!

    Speakers at this press conference were:

    Louis Roy, CSN Vice President, who regularly represents union
    organizations at the international level on the question of PPPs;

    Francine Lévesque, President of the FSSS-CSN (Fédération de la santé et
    des services sociaux-CSN);

    Olga Giancristofaro, President of the McGill University Health Centre
    Employees' Union-CSN;

    Jacques Supple, President of the Syndicat des employé-es du
    Centrehospitalier universitaire de Montréal-CSN.

    The CSN has 300,000 members, of which close to 125,000 are members ofthe
FSSS, one of nine CSN federations.

For further information:

For further information: Sylvie Joly, CSN Union Advisor, (514) 605-0766

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CSN - Secteur public

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