Lisa Gretzky MPP, for Windsor West

Government of Ontario

Gretzky: Premier Ford should commemorate National Nursing Week with action

Published on May 9, 2023

QUEEN’S PARK – NDP MPP Lisa Gretzky (Windsor West) advocated for nurses in Question Period today, recognizing their efforts during National Nursing Week, and giving the government ideas on how to better recognize the hard work of health care professionals in Ontario.  

“Nurses and health care workers have worked tirelessly to keep us safe these past few years,” said Gretzky. “During National Nursing Week, we should thank nurses for their work with meaningful action and ensure they have fair wages and safe working conditions. Instead, this government just passed a bill to privatize our health care system and drive more nurses away – all while fighting them in court over unconstitutional wage restraint legislation. It’s unbelievable”.

Yesterday, Ford’s Conservatives passed Bill 60, a move to privatize and profitize Ontario’s health care, and create a two-tiered system where the healthy and the wealthy are given better and faster care.

“Nurses in Windsor-Essex are leaving my community and going to Detroit, where they are better paid and respected,” said Gretzky. “The Conservatives’ Bill 124 has caused many Canadian nurses to leave Ontario for work and we know that Bill 60 will make things even worse. This government just pushes through one bad bill after another, without any consultation or engagement with the people most impacted.

In November 2022, Premier Ford’s Bill 124 was ruled unconstitutional by Ontario Superior Court of Justice. Even while he distanced himself from the bill, Premier Ford still decided to fight the decision in court – and waste taxpayer dollars while he does. That’s money that could be invested in the public healthcare system to address the staffing shortages and reduce wait times for care.

“This week Premier Ford encouraged everyone to take time to celebrate nurses but made no commitment to end his appeal of Bill 124,” said Gretzky. “I encourage the premier to put his money where his mouth is and immediately give up his defense of this unconstitutional bill and stop attacking women-led professions once and for all. ”

In 2023, National Nursing Week takes place from May 8 to May 14.