(WINDSOR, ON) – Giving up their Family Day holiday, Windsor’s registered nurses took to the street to spread their contempt with the announced layoffs of staff at Windsor Regional Hospital. Information pickets were set up at the Ouellette and Metropolitan campuses of WHR to covey what the impacts of the layoffs will mean for Windsor health care.
The 164 nursing positions affected by the layoffs were to receive their notices yesterday. The cuts will take a toll on almost every aspect of health care including reducing the level of care provided to patients, according to the local bargaining unit president.
“These cuts are wrong,” Sue Sommerdyk told media. “Hospitals need better funding and patients deserve the care that goes with that funding.”
The layoffs are a direct result in a $20 million funding shortfall, and will affect 180 registered nurses. The hospital budget is being balanced by replacing RNs with a smaller number of lower cost registered practical nurses.
“As this province continues to starve hospitals of funding, nurses know the impact on patients,” said Ontario Nurses Association president Linda Haslam-Stroud. “Hospitals across Ontario continue to announce round after round of RN cuts, 406 of them in 2016 alone, leaving patients vulnerable to an increased risk of suffering complications and death.”
The ONA, which represents more than 58,000 RNs across the province, contends that workloads and a lack of staffing are at crisis levels. They are calling for a stop the wave of RN cuts.
The current collective agreement between the ONA’s RNs and hospitals expires March 31.
To send their message to the government, the Nurses Association is asking members of the public to sign the online petition.