MEDIA ADVISORY: Repeal Bills 124 and 195: St. Mary’s General Hospital Nurses Rally Tomorrow at Local MPP’s Office

July 23, 2020

ELMIRA, ON (July 23, 2020) – Nurses from St. Mary’s General Hospital will hold a peaceful rally at Kitchener-Conestoga MPP Mike Harris’s office on Friday to call for Bills 124 and 195 to be repealed.

The nurses have vowed to hold regular protests until the Ford government repeals the legislation. Bill 124 was passed by the government to limit wage increases to one per cent total compensation. The legislation is gender-biased, with those in male-dominated professions, such as ambulance drivers, specifically exempt. The impact of the Bill on the female-dominated profession of nursing was just demonstrated when an arbitrator, releasing a decision for hospital-sector nurses, said Bill 124 tied his hands regarding monetary issues.

Nurses say Bill 124 is clearly unconstitutional and breaches Charter rights to freely collectively bargain.

Bill 195, passed earlier this week by the Ford government, allows the government to extend powers that may override existing legislation, regulations, by-laws and connective agreements, including those negotiated by nurses and health-care professionals. At a time when Ontario nurses and health-care professionals have put themselves at risk to care for patients during the COVID-19 pandemic, the spectre of government having indefinite power to close hospitals, redeploy and reassign staff at will, cancel leaves and vacation time and more is unacceptable.

ONA is the union representing more than 68,000 registered nurses and health-care professionals, as well as 18,000 nursing student affiliates, providing care in hospitals, long-term care facilities, public health, the community, clinics and industry.

What: Nurses’ rally to call for the repeal of Bills 124, 195

When: Friday, July 24, 1 to 3 p.m.

Where:  Constituency office of Mike Harris, Kitchener-Conestoga MPP, 63 Arthur Street South, Unit 3 and 4, Elmira


For more information:

Erin Ariss: 226-339-5282