Updates

Emergency Town Hall Meetings, Upcoming Rallies & More Upcoming Events

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Ontario Health Coalition

Upcoming Meetings and Events

HOSPITAL EMERGENCY Online Town Hall Meetings

Our public hospitals are in an unprecedented crisis. The Ford government has done substantially nothing to help them. Instead they have funnelled millions into for-profit corporations to privatize our public hospital services.

Almost 100 Emergency Departments have had closures across Ontario. If the Ford government continues to ignore & downplay the staffing crisis -- and use the crisis as an excuse to privatize - our community hospitals are at grave risk.

All across Ontario people have banded together for a century or more to build up our local public hospitals. We have volunteered, fundraised and donated from our pay cheques because these are vital services for our communities.  The Ford government's plan would dismantle our local public hospitals, taking the profitable services out to for-profit corporations, robbing them of desperately needed staff and funding.

We must force the Ford government to address the crisis and take urgent action to support our local PUBLIC hospitals. We CAN do this, but everyone needs to help to make it happen.

Thunder Bay

Monday February 13 at 7 p.m. 

Register for the town hall here: https://us06web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZAlcuivqj8qHtzuhn9jR2D_Asdh69g6QvpO

Chatham-Kent

Wednesday, February 15 at 7 p.m.

Register for the town hall here: https://us06web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZwodeiprTksHdLOVMuIOV5yZF2x7Wy6c8lO

London

Thursday, February 16 at 7 p.m.

Register for the town hall here: https://us06web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZUlcOmvpjsrG9d-tLoHuuBt95tLGdvVlyaF

Sarnia-Lambton

Saturday, February 18 at 10 a.m.

Register for the town hall here: https://us06web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZElcuuhqz8vGdTIzpyIDn2ZuY4K4FsDx1zk

Haliburton County

Tuesday, February 21 at 6:30 p.m.

Register for the town hall here: https://us06web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZctd-2prTMrHdIEVqJ13f0acQ74TMEJfbW5

The Ford Government's Ongoing Plan to Further Privatize Hospital Services

On January 16, 2023, the Ford government revealed their plan on how they planned to deal with the current crisis in health care.  

Premier Ford and Health Minister Sylvia Jones announced that their plan to deal with the unacceptable backlog of surgical and diagnostic procedures was to move them out of public hospitals to private for profit surgical and diagnostic clinics starting with cataract surgery, then expanding to MRIs and CT scans and finally to performing hip and knee replacements. The Premier has also said that this is a permanent change that will continue even after the backlog of surgical cases has eased.  

Neither Premier Ford nor Health Minster Jones would comment on the “upselling” of services which is the practice of offering better products to patients than those covered by OHIP.  

COPE Ontario and its members are asking the Ford government to cease and desist from further privatizing vital services now provided by the public hospital system. Such a plan if implemented will lead to more professional and allied health care workers leaving the public health care system and moving to private clinics that will not be affected by Bill 124, which caps wages for all public sector workers at one per cent (1%) total wages for a period of three (3) years.  Despite Premiers Ford’s recent statement that Bill 124 has lapsed, which is incorrect and misleading, as many health care and public sector workers are still affected by Bill 124, which in some cases will extend into 2024 and 2025.  

The people of Ontario should be genuinely concerned about the Ford government’s plan to further privatize public health care services which will lead to the health care system in Ontario being based on one’s ability to pay for health care rather than based on a person’s needs, as stated in the Canada Health Act. 

COPE Ontario is asking its members and all Ontarians to personally contact and e-mail Premier Ford’s office and their local MPP office to express their opposition to the Ford government’s proposed plan for the further privatization of the public hospital system.  

PSI - Our Future is Public Conference Overview

PSI - Our Future Is Public Conference Overview

by Lorrie Vandersluis

 For those who are unfamiliar with Public Services International (PSI) is a global union federation for workers in public services, including social services, healthcare, municipal services,   central government and public utilities.

 *Founded: 1907

 *Members: 30 million in 154 countries

 *Headquartered: Ferney-Voltaire, France

As many of you know, I am heavily involved in keeping services public municipally, provincially and nationally. COPE/SEPB National delegated me to attend this amazing conference with Luke minded people from all over the world. This was my first international conference. What an incredible feeling it is to work on these global issues, actively participating in making peoples lives better. An incredible privilege and honour.

Attended the second  “Our Future is Public” conference in Santiago, Chile. The first was held in Amsterdam in 2019. Well over 1000 leaders attended this 2022 conference to defend global public services. My focus was healthcare and education. My colleague, Maryeve Boyer, attended “Economic Justice and Public Services”, that included taxation, women and Indigenous workers.

To me, the primary objective is to mitigate suffering. We heard many, many examples of how corporate greed is increasing suffering globally with the abuse of essential services. There was a real desire for health care to be governed by the public to keep accountability, including costs under control.  Privatization is proven to drive costs significantly higher with quality decreasing.

We learned that many other countries are suffering with the same issues with essential services becoming privatized. Sharing stories is critical. A University of Amsterdam professor had never heard of the Walkerton water scandal here in Ontario and will now use this in examples of what can go wrong.

There are very large corporations driving privatization, including private insurance providers, particularly in health care. We are seeing more and more that health care is becoming a global commodity with a sharp increase in health care on the global stock markets. We can not let this happen!  Health care is for all!  A right. We and our health care can not become commodities to venture capitalists.  In many countries the wealthy have much easier access to health care. There is concern this is promoting “survival of the fittest” and setting us back globally on equity issues.  There is a need to have democratic controls.

We had the privilege of a site visit at a public hospital in Santiago, Chile.  The physician lead gave us a personal tour. He did point out the the income discrimination in the Chilean health care system where there is approximately 80% private health care.  This public hospital is not facilitated with radiological equipments like CT, MRI. Chileans would need to go to a private hospital for those kinds of services. They were very proud of their 2 ultrasound machines.  This public hospital felt like a community treasure, with a strong feeling of community ownership.  A real sense of pride was the childcare on the hospital site for site. This is available from newborn to after school programming. Again, it was very clear how proud staff were of this childcare program and not looked at like a liability.

There will be a Santiago Declaration on Global Health Care coming. This will also be presented to the World Health Organization for adoption. There is a World Health Care Summit being held in Berlin this year to further mobilize on this issue. This is the beginning of this project but I do feel that by addressing this with solidarity that we can be successful.

Advised that United Nations has agreed to consider a fair taxation convention to look at global tax architecture.

April 7 has been identified as “Peoples Health Day”.  #ourhealthisnotforsale

This work does not come without risk. Many countries are wanting privatization. Some citizens in this group are at risk of reprisal, including some countries making travel difficult who take part in anti privatization work. All of our correspondence must therefor be encrypted.

There is NO ACCOUNTABILITY FOR PRIVATE PLAYERS. You do not have to look far in Ontario to realize this. Just look at the situation we found ourselves in during the pandemic in our private nursing homes.  The free pass for greedy capitalists needs to stop.  Taking our public services back is happening globally, usually after a disaster like we experienced in our nursing homes.  There are over 1000 examples where services have gone back to public. There is a term for it called “remunicipalization”.  Public, municipal ownership is demonstrating over and over a far higher level of democratic intervention with the involvement of municipalities.

There will be more information coming. We will be working on building knowledge on public ownership.  There are transnational databases being developed collecting and mapping cases across countries and sectors.

Kind Regards,

Lorrie Vandersluis

Events/Événements

COPE Ontario Fall Educational Workshops Schedule for 2022


To register for a COPE Ontario workshop listed below, please log-on to the Members tab or contact Endera Singh directly at 416-703-8515 extension 223 or by email [email protected]

The following workshops will be held at the COPE Ontario Office at 555 Richmond St. W. Suite 1101, Toronto, ON from 9:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

  • Grievance & Arbitration – Part I (Basic Steward’s Training – Part I) - Tuesday, February 14, 2023

  • Grievance & Arbitration – Part II (Basic Steward’s Training – Part II) - Thursday, February 23, 2023

  • The Art of Negotiations -  Re-scheduled to Thursday, March 2, 2023
  • Human Rights and the Duty to Accommodate - Re-scheduled to Thursday, May 4, 2023

  • Dealing with Workplace Conflict - Tuesday, June 13, 2023

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The COPE Ontario Thunder Bay office is located at 1265 East Arthur Street, Suite 600a, P.O. Box 42, Thunder Bay, ON

  • Human Rights and the Duty to Accommodate - Friday, March 10, 2023 – (9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.)
  • Dealing with Workplace Conflict - Saturday, March 11, 2023 – (8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.)

Registrants attending the workshop(s) must register no later than March 1, 2023.

Ten (10) registrants are required to be registered for each workshop.

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Ottawa:  Location-to-be-announced (Hotel)

  • Grievance & Arbitration - Part I (Basic Steward’s Training – Part I) -  Saturday, April 1st,  2023 (9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.)

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Kapuskasing:

  • Grievance & Arbitration – Part I (Basic Steward’s Training – Part I) - Thursday, April 27, 2023

  • Grievance & Arbitration – Part II (Basic Steward’s Training – Part II) - Friday, April 28, 2023

All workshops are in person.  Should the healthcare situation change workshops may be offered virtually.

For more information regarding the scheduling of workshops, please contact Maureen O'Halloran, Staff Representative at 416-703-8515 extension 231.

 

There are currently no events scheduled. Be sure to check back soon!

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