Ontario & Toronto Health Coalitions held a press conference outside of the Toronto General Hospital to announce the first 500 voting stations in the people’s referendum on the privatization of our public hospitals. This is one of ten press conferences across Ontario by the following health coalitions:

  • Peel Region Health Coalition
  • Waterloo Health Coalition
  • London Health Coalition
  • Guelph Health Coalition
  • Haliburton Highlands LTC Coalition
  • Chatham Kent, Wallaceburg-Walpole Island and Sarnia
  • Lambton Health Coalitions
  • Niagara Health Coalition
  • North Bay Health Coalition
  • Peterborough Health Coalition

This announcement of the first 500 voting stations is only the beginning. Local health coalitions will be announcing hundreds more voting stations locations expected to be announced in the next two weeks.

This people’s referendum is a direct response to the Ontario government’s plans to privatize our hospitals. The government plans to pass the final vote of their hospital privatization legislation, Bill 60, “Your Health Act”) on Monday. They want to open their first-day hospitals owned by for-profit companies in Windsor, Waterloo, and Ottawa by September. They are trying to privatize cataract surgeries and diagnostics first, and they want to have privatized hip and knee surgeries by next year.

Our collective effort to build the fightback has them worried. In the Legislature in recent weeks, the Minister of Health won’t breathe the words “privatization” or “for-profit”. They keep calling the private for-profit hospitals and clinics “community clinics” to try to cover up the privatization. (No matter their current attempt to cover, their plan is clear and has been announced multiple times. They are taking our core services from our local public hospitals, including surgeries and diagnostics, and privatizing them to for-profit clinics -which are essentially private for-profit day hospitals- unless we stop them.)

Ontario’s Health Coalitions are organizing a massive fightback in communities across Ontario and engaging in the legislative process. Since the Ford government has a majority and will pass their new legislation, most of our work will be to mobilize public opposition to privatization to build enough political pressure to make it impossible for them to implement their plan to privatize our public hospitals’ core services. The first stage is the people’s referendum: a community-led and organized referendum with the aim of getting a massive number of votes — too big to ignore — to make it politically impossible for the government to implement its hospital privatization plan.

If you want to help stop the privatization of our public hospitals and are not already involved:

  • Please volunteer! Click this link
  • Please vote! You can vote online now or in person on Friday May 26 and Saturday May 27. We are hoping to get as many in-person votes as possible so we are asking you to vote in person if you can, but if you need to vote online, that is great also! Click this link to vote.
  • Please donate if you can. We can build this referendum and fight back as big as we can afford to do. If you are able to donate we gratefully appreciate the help. Click this link to donate.

Everyone has a role to play. Everyone is needed. To do nothing means to lose our public hospitals and our public health care. Please join the fightback.

Online voting for the Ontario Health Coalition’s citizen’s referendum is now live!

You can cast your online vote here: https://www.publichospitalvote.ca

Thank you all so very much.

Our public hospitals do not belong to this government to privatize. Every community across this province has built them up. It took us over a century to do so.We will not let them be dismantled and given away to profit-seeking companies without the biggest fightback this province has ever seen.