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REPEAT - MEDIA ADVISORY: Results of Huge People’s Referendum to stop the privatization of Ontario’s public hospitals to be announced

Attn: Assignment Editor

Almost a thousand voting stations were staffed by thousands of volunteers in a massive effort to force the Ford government to respect democratic process and input on their hospital privatization plans


Province-wide press conference:

Province-wide results will be announced outside Queen’s Park on Wednesday May 31 at 10 a.m.

A massive pile of ballots from the people’s referendum will be brought in from across Ontario and piled in front of the Legislature to be delivered to the government.

Media contact: Natalie Mehra, executive director, Ontario Health Coalition 416-230-6402 (cell).

Local health coalitions across the province will be announcing results locally on Tuesday, May 30 as listed:

  • Algoma Region: Outside Roy Romano’s office at 390 Bay St, Sault Ste. Marie at 10 a.m. Contact: Albert Dupuis 613-808-7710,
  • Atikokan Region: Contact Diana Coulomb 807-598-1189
  • Chatham-Kent: Outside the front entrance of Sydenham District Hospital in Wallaceburg at 10 a.m. Contact: Shirley Roebuck 226-402 2724,     
  • Cornwall & Region:
    • Alexandria: In front of Glengarry District Memorial Hospital at 10 a.m. Contact Louise Lanctot (bilingual) 613-932 1943,
    • Cornwall: In front of the Cornwall Community Hospital, on McConnell Avenue, midway between the emergency entrance and the general parking entrance at 10 a.m. Contact Elaine MacDonald 613-330-3117
  • Durham Region: Outside Lakeridge Health in Alexandra Park at 10 a.m. Contact Pam Parks 905-447-1124,
  • Fort Frances: Contact Richard McKinnon 807-274-5013
  • Guelph & Wellington County: Contact Karen Rathwell 519-362-7615,
  • Grey Bruce: Contact Norah Beatty 519-477-3513, or Brenda Scott 519-375-5812,
  • Haliburton: Head Lake Park in Haliburton Village near the Information Center at 10 a.m. Contact Bonnie Roe 705-457-6579,
  • Halton Region: Contact Trudi Ford 905-580-7962,
  • ** ADDITION Hamilton: Hamilton General Hospital, corner of Barton St and Victoria Ave at 11:30 a.m. Contact Janina Lebon 905-545-5514,
  • Kawartha Lakes: Contact James Mulhern 705-324-7841,
  • Kingston & Region: Corner of Princess and Concession Sts. at 10 a.m. Contact Joan Jardin 613-305-2716,
  • London: London Health Coalition Referendum HQ/Reimagineco, 206 Piccadilly St at 10 a.m. Contact Peter Bergmanis 519-860-4403
  • Muskoka Region: In front of MPP Graydon Smith’s office, 230 Manitoba St., Bracebridge at 10 a.m. Contact Sandra Ashcroft
  • Niagara Region: In front of the St. Catharines Hospital at the corner of 4th Avenue and First Avenue Louth at 11 a.m. Contact Sue Hotte 905-932-1646,
  • Norfolk County: Powell Park, 250 Main St., Port Dover at 11 a.m. Contact Gail Heald-Taylor 519-428-6083,
  • North Bay and Region: OPSEU office, 150 First St. E. at 2 p.m. Contact Henri Giroux 705-471-7746,
  • Ottawa: Contact Ed Cashman 343-999-6886,
  • **ADDITION: Oxford County: Outside MPP Ernie Hardeman’s office, 12 Perry St, Woodstock. Contact Bryan J. Smith 226-228-8309,
  • Peel Region: Outside Trillium Health Partners Mississauga Hospital, 77 Queensway West, on the sidewalk, north side of the hospital at 10 a.m. Contact Mohammad Aumeer, 416-770-7858,
  • Peterborough Region: Campaign office in Maple Ridge Plaza, 1840 Lansdowne St W. Peterborough at 10 a.m. Contact Marion Burton 705 868-7352,  
  • Renfrew County: Contact Leona Haley 613-602-1646,
  • Sarnia-Lambton: In front of the Sydenham District Hospital in Wallaceburg at 10 a.m. Contact June Weiss 519-466-3372,
  • Simcoe County: Sunnidale Park Arboretum at 265 Sunnidale Road, Barrie at 11:30 a.m. Contact Anisa Carrascal 647-835-7870,
  • Simcoe North: Contact Don Copping 705-549-0366,
  • Stratford: Contact Sharon Sippel 519-276-1291
  • Sudbury: Contact Melissa Wood 705-662-8506,
  • Toronto: Toronto results will be announced with the Ontario-wide results on Wednesday, May 31 at 10 a.m. outside the Main Legislative Building, Queen’s Park, Toronto. Contact Carolyn Egan 416-806-7985,
  • Thunder Bay: OPSEU Regional Office, 326 Memorial Ave. at 2 p.m. Contact Jules Tupker 807-627-6249,
  • Waterloo Region: Outside the main entrance to Grand River Hospital, 835 King St W., Kitchener at 8:30 a.m. Contact Jim Stewart 519 588 5841
  • Windsor: Southeast corner of Prince Road and Glenfield St, Windsor, next to the new Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare site at 10 a.m. Contact Patrick Hannon 519-796-0410,


In January, the Ford government announced plans to move forward with the privatization of the core services from our local public hospitals. Among the plans:

  • Three for-profit clinics (essentially day hospitals) to be opened in Windsor, Waterloo and Ottawa to do 14,000 cataract surgeries to start as well as diagnostics;
  • Expansion of existing for-profit clinics to do surgeries and diagnostics currently provided in local public hospitals;
  • Expansion of the scope of privatization to include more surgeries including a plan to privatize hip and knee surgeries by next year.

Fact check:

  • Despite the claims of the Ford government, these are not temporary clinics to deal with a backlog. They are long-term contracts that start at 5 years and can be longer, at the government’s discretion. Once for-profit clinics are in and have taken over our public hospital services, it will be extremely difficult, if at all possible, to get them out.
  • Despite claims that patients will not have to pay out of pocket, existing private clinics in Ontario already extra-bill patients illegally and upsell medically unnecessary services to patients, often using manipulative tactics. Patients are being charged thousands of dollars for cataract surgery – far in excess of the $550 cost under OHIP – and they are being charged on top of OHIP for these services, and they are doing so with impunity.
  • Despite claims that the goal of this privatization is to reduce wait times, all across Ontario local public hospitals have operating rooms that are closed every evening, on weekends, and sometimes permanently due to underfunding and staffing. We already have the infrastructure in our public hospitals. The choice not to use public hospitals’ operating rooms to their capacity, and instead to rebuild operating rooms only under the ownership and control of for-profit clinics and hospitals, is a political choice to privatize.

For more information: Natalie Mehra, executive director (416) 230-6402 text or call.

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