April 20, 2009
The March 26th Ontario budget was just the beginning. When Finance Minister Dwight Duncan rose in the Legislature to outline the government’s revenue and expenses for the upcoming year, he set in motion a process in which each Ministry must justify how it will spend every public dollar.
So it was not the end of the matter when the budget only committed to “more than 900” additional nurses, less than one third of the 3,000 additional nurses that almost 7,000 RNAO members had told Premier McGuinty we need in this province!
Here’s what we can do. This week the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care will release its ‘Estimates’, the detailed operating and spending for the year April 1, 2009 to March 31, 2010. Ministry staff will then prepare results-based plans for the coming year, setting out what targets have been set and how results will be measured. The RNAO says those targets must reflect Premier McGuinty’s election commitment to hire 9,000 additional nurses. Nurses know that this year we need at least 3,000 additional nurses to meet that commitment and prevent an already serious nursing shortage from worsening. Together, we must continue to make ourselves heard.
Here’s what YOU can do.
1. WRITE TO PREMIER McGUINTY TODAY, Make sure the Premier remembers his commitment to Ontario’s patients, to nurses already in the workforce and those studying to become nurses. You can send our sample letter below as is, or modify it as you wish. Add your insights about how the shortage of nurses affects your community and your workplace. Note that when you use the template below, copies automatically are sent to Health and Long-Term Care Minister David Caplan and Finance Minister Duncan.
2. PLEASE SHARE THIS ACTION ALERT WITH YOUR COLLEAGUES, FAMILY AND FRIENDS AND ASK THEM TO WRITE AS WELL! Ontario’s shortage of nurses and health professionals is everybody’s issue. Every email makes a HUGE difference!