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CUPE organizing hospital rally

Posted: October 22, 2015

(October 22, 2015)

By Jennifer Hamilton – McCharles, The North bay Nugget

The North Bay and area community will have an opportunity to speak out against hospital cuts at the North Bay Regional Health Centre.

The Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) is organizing a public rally for noon Nov. 30 at Lee Park.

Natalie Mehra, executive director of the Ontario Health Coalition, said the public is concerned about cuts at the North Bay Regional Health Centre, where 158 full-time equivalent jobs are being eliminated.

Mehra said the recent cuts are among the worst the union has seen in Ontario.

“This routine of unstable funding and continuous cuts has to be stopped,” she said during Thursday’s teleconference town hall in which more than 4,300 people participated.

Mehra said the rally will show hospital executives and politicians at Queen’s Park the community’s strength and commitment to public health care.

“We need to make ourselves visible and our voices heard. We have got to put pressure on the provincial government. We need more hospital beds and more staff,” she said.

“These cuts have gone too far.”

Mehra said CUPE has won similar battles.

For example, she said 60 beds were returned to a Windsor hospital.

“The North Bay Regional Health Centre is doing what it can get away with,” she said.

“We can win this, but we’re going to have to raise our voices.”

CUPE said it will announce details of the rally next month.

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