In the last few days, the region of Outaouais has been in the spotlight. The employer decided to apply the abusive ministerial order 007 suspending several provisions of the collective agreement at the same time, hence enabling the employer to do whatever they want with the healthcare professionals. I had to react loud and clear faced with this new insult to the healthcare professionals.
To those employers who have already used this means or those who might be tempted to use it again, what did you not understand? Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have denounced this inhumane approach in every forum that had devastating consequences during the first wave. Faced with such a pandemic, everyone has a duty and responsibility to learn from the first wave and avoid making the same mistakes.
A vulnerable health network and healthcare professionals already at the end of their rope well before the pandemic, the effects of a coercive approach have been disastrous and the wake-up brutal last August. Thousands of healthcare professionals have now definitively left the health network over the last few months or have fallen ill. The lack of respect for the healthcare professionals has also had a domino effect on patients who now face problems of accessibility and dehumanized care where quality and safety are not a priority.
Under the pretence of the public health crisis, employers give themselves disproportionate powers by forcing healthcare professionals to work full time, refusing time off or reassigning them from one specialty to another. No government would dare to impose such a thing on physicians… Never ever!
The nurses, licensed practical nurses, respiratory therapists and clinical perfusionists are not numbers. They are professionals, predominantly women, mothers, daughters and friends. They also have a life outside of work and they are entitled to it. How, in a civilized society like ours, can we allow people to have so much power over human beings?
Nothing, absolutely nothing, can justify such a control and stranglehold on healthcare professionals … not even a global pandemic!