After days and nights of discussions with the government, the Fédération interprofessionnelle de la santé du Québec–FIQ is strongly denouncing the government’s inability to reach an agreement on exceptional measures worthy of what the “guardian angels” deserve.
The ministerial order that went into effect last weekend was a first slap in the face. The government’s refusal today to negotiate exceptional measures for an exceptional situation is a low blow, one that threatens the entire health and social services network, already weakened by years of catastrophic reforms and cutbacks.
“The premier calls them guardian angels. Yet again this morning, he was unable to ensure their safety, protested the president of the FIQ, Nancy Bédard. It is simply unacceptable.” Needless to say, the FIQ will be busy denouncing all the dangerous situations for its 76,000 healthcare professional members.
The FIQ gave the employer party an ultimatum after several days of discussions: the government has to show they are open to putting several exceptional measures in place. Every day, healthcare professionals are putting their health on the line and that of their families. They need equipment, clear guidelines for their health and safety, to be valued, recognition and additional remuneration. The government is offering them nothing,” lamented Ms. Bédard.
“The nurses, licensed practical nurses, respiratory therapists and clinical perfusionists can no longer hold up the network. They are at the end of their rope, battered by all the cutbacks over the last few years. Everyone agrees, including the Minister of Health. The government’s attitude is incomprehensible. We are a long way from the solidarity and mutual assistance that the premier brags about every day in his press briefings”, added Ms. Bédard.
The healthcare professionals have been there since the beginning of the crisis and will continue to be on the front lines for their patients over the coming days and weeks. They put themselves at risk to be able to care for the population of Québec.
“The FIQ will continue to fight for them. They are entitled to expect recognition measures proportionate to the scope of the task before them”, Ms. Bédard insisted.