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Action Alert: Fight for Public Health Care Now!

By: 
Carolyn Egan

October 25, 2020
 
I attended the Ontario Health Coalition conference this weekend as a unionized front line health worker. Over three hundred registered from across the province including community activists,‎ trade unionists from health care locals, seniors, and families of residents in long term care facilities. Local health coalitions are very active pushing hard to protect public health care. Actvists spoke about the terrible conditions that exist and the need for change. Even though it was a Zoom meeting‎ the urgency and the seriousness of purpose was felt in every session. The stories were heart rending and workers spoke up about what they face every day. They are tired but ready to fight.
 
The provincial government‎ is actively trying to further privatize our health care system and workers and the community are paying the price. The effects of Covid were paramount and brought into sharp relief the already existing inequities. The effects of class and race were brought up again and again. The austerity agenda that we have been experiencing has led to deregulation and the downgrading of standards with more and more privately owned facilities. Millions in profits are being made while people die. 
 
We need all long term health facilities to become not for profit as well as a public home care system. Workers and residents must be treated with the dignity and respect that is their right.  Unions have now taken up the call for pushing for profit corporations and owners out of long term care. The teachers showed the way with walkouts and coordinated actions across the province which organized huge popular support ‎ The activists in attendance pledged to create the public space to mobilize broader and broader layers to fight back and create the health care systems we all deserve.
 
What can you do?
 
Support the Ontario Health Coalition campaign on Long Term Care homes at this link: https://www.facebook.com/ontariohealth
 
Or go to Care not Profits to sign a letter to Doug Ford demanding action: https://carenotprofits.ca/
 
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