Retain and Hire RNs and Increase Minimum Wage
Submitted by admin on Thu, 2014-01-23 16:48
On January 16th, RNAO made a pre-budget submission to the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs and used this important opportunity to urge government action on two key issues in the next Budget.
- Retain and Hire additional RNs: Ontario’s nurse-to-population ratio lags far behind the rest of the country. In fact, Ontario needs 17, 588 more RNs to just catch up to the rest of Canada! New nursing graduates are having a tough time finding work in Ontario, and once they move away, they aren’t likely to come back. Some 6000 RNs are working in nursing outside Ontario with over 3000 working in the United States. That’s a loss of expertise that we can’t afford. In the next Budget, we need concrete action to focus full attention on RN retention and hiring additional RNs.
- Raise the minimum wage: Since 2010, the minimum wage has been frozen at $10.25 per hour in Ontario. With rising food, rent and electricity costs, a worker employed full-time on the minimum wage, has an income 19% below the poverty line - this is outrageous. Nurses know that low income also has a huge impact on health and well-being. A study of health in Hamilton revealed a 21-year difference in life expectancy between a high and a low income neighbourhood. We can and must do better! In the next Budget, we need concrete action to raise the minimum wage to $14 per hour.
What can you do?
- Send this letter to Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne. Copies will be automatically sent to all Cabinet Ministers, the opposition leaders and the opposition health and social services critics.
- Forward Action Alert with others and ask them to send this letter.