It’s my pleasure to rise today on behalf of my community of Windsor West on the first day of Nursing Week in Ontario. Our dedicated and professional nurses are critical to delivering the quality health care people living in this province know and deserve. Today, I’m joined by some of these caregivers from my riding, and I thank them for taking it the time to come to Queen’s Park.
While our front-line health care workers work hard every day to ensure our families stay healthy, the Liberal government’s underfunding of hospitals continues to make their jobs more difficult. This year, Windsor Regional Hospital announced that 169 nursing positions will be eliminated. This is the equivalent to the loss of 330,000 hours of hands-on RN patient care per year. Aspiring nurses may be forced to seek out employment in the US, costing us our next generation of trained and dedicated caregivers in Ontario. These cuts will have a real impact on people in their most vulnerable moments.
Hospitals must not be forced to make decisions based on dollars and deficits.
Nearly 10,000 caregivers, health care recipients and families in Windsor and Essex county signed a petition calling for an end to these short-sighted hospital cuts. Enough is enough. It’s time for this government to listen.
New Democrats know nurses are vital to making sure families and seniors in Windsor and across Ontario get quality health care they can count on. It’s time for this government to recognize the value of our nurses in delivering patient care and commit to a moratorium on nursing cuts.