President JP Hornick, First Vice-President/Treasurer Laurie Nancekivell and every sector chair of OPSEU/SEFPO’s seven health care divisions have written to Minister of Health Sylvia Jones, warning her that our union will be fighting the Ford government’s health care privatization scheme announced this week, every step of the way.
Here is the letter they sent:
August 18, 2022
The Hon. Sylvia JonesMinister of Health College Park 5th Floor 777 Bay St. Toronto, ON M7A 2J3
As the elected leaders of tens of thousands of health care workers represented by OPSEU/SEFPO, we are alarmed and angered to hear about your plans to privatize health care in our province.
We are appalled that in your second week back in the legislature, this is your top priority. It is clear that you have learned nothing from two years of a deadly pandemic – one where you neglected to spend $1.8 billion dollars allocated for health care last year, while people were dying, and health care workers were stretched beyond their limits.
Our public health care system is a representation of our shared humanity, not a money-making opportunity.
Yet, you have spent the last four years starving the health care system. You have alienated most health care workers by capping their wages and suspending their workplace rights during a pandemic that has forced them into more danger and more overwork than ever before. You have driven thousands of health care professionals to leave their jobs.
And now, you are using the collapse you created as an excuse to sell off our public health care system. No one elected you to privatize health care. You didn’t run on it, and Ontarians won’t stand for it.
As health care workers and Ontarians, we consider this to be one of the greatest fights of our lifetime, and we will be organizing to fight your privatization scheme every step of the way. We will bring our members together with allies across the province, including unions, community groups, patients, and residents, and we will be taking it to the streets.
We will not stand by and allow you to destroy our public health care system.
JP Hornick, PresidentLaurie Nancekivell, First Vice-President/Treasurer Ed Arvelin, Chair, Mental Health and Addictions Division Geoff Cain, Chair, Canadian Blood Services and Diagnostics Sector Joan Corradetti, Chair, Long-Term Care and Related Facilities Sector Sara Labelle, Chair, Hospital Professionals Division Jill McIllwraith, Chair, Health Care Divisional Council, and Hospital Support Sector Lucy Morton, Chair, Community Health Care Professionals Sector Joel Usher, Chair, Ambulance Division