2000 join North Bay call

Hospital cancels layoffs

Fight to save 29 addiction treatment beds in North Bay

In December, the Northeast Local Health Integration Network announced it would stop funding 29 residential addiction treatment beds and 2 crisis beds at the North Bay hospital.

CUPE local 139 sprang into action and sponsored a candlelight vigil, many media conferences and an electronic town hall chaired by CUPE national president Mark Hancock that attracted more than 2,000 North Bay citizens.

In response to the public campaign, the hospital recently cancelled all layoffs and announced that 16 beds will be maintained–but there will be no residential treatment beds.

The Ontario Health Coalition is planning a rally February 28, and a public meeting on March 10 in North Bay to fight to keep the 29 residential addiction treatment beds open.

Local 7800 fights to protect pathology services in Hamilton and Niagara from centralization

CUPE 7800 at Hamilton Health Sciences is calling on the provincial government to reconsider its decision to shift all pathology cases from Niagara to Toronto, by-passing Hamilton.

“We were never told that Niagara pathology cases would be diverted to Toronto, by-passing Hamilton,” says Dave Murphy, president of Local 7800 of CUPE. “Does it not seem crazy to drive by Hamilton with a body when there are capable professional staff available to do this work in our community? We would also like to know why the Solicitor General hasn’t acted after learning that the Hamilton office was closed without permission.”

The closure of the Hamilton pathology unit contradicts the strategic plan for Ontario’s Death Investigation System, which calls for “Expanded and improved regional service delivery capacity.”

Local 7800 has campaigned to protect this service for a year. 

Coronavirus looming

With Coronavirus spreading in many countries, it is time to pay closer attention to the steps that should be taken to protect staff, patients and visitors. Here are some things to consider:

  • The Centre for Disease Control says healthcare staff should treat this virus as airborne. Eye protection is recommended, as well as a respirator and gloves as additional precautions to reduce risk of exposure to contact, droplet and airborne infectious diseases.
  • All staff should be trained how to use personal protective equipment, including when performing normal tasks. Practice should include safely putting this gear on and taking it off.
  • All Health and Safety Committee reps should be involved in discussions about how any potential case of Coronavirus will be handled, how staff are trained and how personal protective equipment is distributed.
  • Click here for more resources on Coronavirus 

Long term care rallies April 21

CUPE Ontario, OCHU, the Health Coalition, Unifor, SEIU and others are organizing noon hour rallies at long term care workplaces April 21 to push for increased staffing.

CUPE Ontario and OCHU will release a poll on morale, staffing and workloads in long term care in March.

HOOPP

OCHU Trustee Sharon Richer has been appointed to chair the powerful Plan Committee at HOOPP, our pension plan. This committee recommends to the Board of Directors any improvements that could be made to pension plan benefits. 

Midwives win wage discrimination case

Ontario’s midwives have won a landmark wage discrimination on the basis of sex case, at the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal. Salaries will increase substantially. Other women in healthcare may take note.