OPSEU/SEFPO launches healthcare anti-privatization campaign with clear message to Ontario PC government: Our lives are not for profit


Toronto – The Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU/SEFPO) has launched a province-wide advertising campaign called ‘Save Public Healthcare’ to warn against the Ontario Conservative government’s recent actions to expand private healthcare delivery.

The Save Public Healthcare campaign, which launched Monday on network TV, connected TV, website advertising and social media, is part of an ongoing fight by OPSEU/SEFPO members working in the healthcare sector to save Ontario’s public healthcare system.

The campaign kick-off video ‘Our lives are not for profit’, which is reminiscent of a Black Mirror-esque world, was viewed by over 700,000 members of the public in the first 24-hours of its release and has sparked widespread conversation.

“The Conservative government is trying to deceive the public by offering privatization as the solution to a crisis it created by starving public hospitals and cutting healthcare workers’ pay,” said JP Hornick, OPSEU/SEFPO President. “We needed a campaign to create discomfort and disrupt this scheme – to bridge the gap for those who don’t yet realize the damage that privatization will cause to our healthcare system and to communicate the urgency of taking action.”

The massive staffing crisis in public healthcare has lengthened wait times for essential surgeries and diagnostics, resulted in numerous ambulance code zeroes, and produced many hospital emergency room closures.

“A real investment in the public system – one that addresses decades of government underfunding – is the way to solve problems like long wait times and the severe retention and recruitment crisis. Our provincial health dollars must be spent on patient care; not on padding wealthy investors’ pockets,” said Joel Usher, OPSEU/SEFPO Ambulance Division Chair and paramedic. “Paramedics and ambulance communications officers want to deliver high quality, efficient service, but this government’s privatization agenda is only leading to more offload delays and fewer workers available to respond when lives are on the line.”

The union’s healthcare members warn that the Conservative government’s healthcare privatization legislation, Bill 60, will pull funding and staff away from the public system, worsen wait times in hospitals and ultimately hurt the public.

“What the PC government is not telling the public is that private clinics cost taxpayers significantly more. All Bill 60 does is prioritize private profits in healthcare, and private clinics will be finding ways to upsell and cut corners to make their profits,” said Sara Labelle, OPSEU/SEFPO Hospital Professionals Division Chair and medical laboratory technologist. “Our public hospitals are understaffed in hundreds of healthcare classifications. The focus needs to be on funding the public system; not draining it even more.”

To learn more about the Save Public Healthcare campaign and watch the ad, visit savepublichealthcare.ca

For more information:

Kelsea Mahabir
OPSEU/SEFPO Communications Officer


The Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU/SEFPO) was formed in 1911 and represents approximately 180,000 workers across Ontario, fighting together on one common vision: a more just Ontario for all workers. OPSEU/SEFPO members work in a wide array of public services including the health care sector, Ontario government, community colleges, LCBO, community agencies, and many more.