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Let’s put this “dead idea” from the Harris era back in the grave, CUPE says

TORONTO – Bringing back “competitive bidding” from the graveyard of bad ideas will further weaken Ontario’s already strained home care system, says the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE)-Ontario.

“Minister of Health and Long-term Care David Caplan has made the wrong decision by re-introducing a failed and disastrous competitive bidding model of service delivery into home care,” says Sid Ryan, President of CUPE Ontario.

“Tinkering with a failed model is not what Ontarians need from a government that claims to be committed to public health care,” Ryan says.

Home care workers are predominantly women, and in urban centres, often racialized women who struggle with exploitative working conditions and low wages.  Home care workers regularly travel unpaid between clients, have shifts spread out over the course of the day and have less and less time available to spend with people as they rush from client to client.  Both workers and clients have observed a marked decline in the quality of home care service since the Mike Harris government introduced competitive bidding in 1996. 

“We can do better,” says Fred Hahn, Secretary-Treasurer of CUPE Ontario.  “There are more public, sustainable, sensible models from other provinces we could develop.  Let’s create a public solution, not resurrect dead ideas from the Harris era.”


Fred Hahn, Secretary-Treasurer, CUPE Ontario, cell: 416.540.3979
David Robbins, CUPE Communications, cell: 613.878.1431