The Faces of Austerity (La Presse)

By Jeanne Larocque-Jeffrey, Community Sector Worker, Québec City Originally published on April 1, 2015 See original French text here:

The government has dashed even the faintest hopes of people with autism, downtrodden youth, immigrant mothers…

Mister Couillard,

I am a student and a protester. Don’t stop reading right away! I am also a worker. I have worked in the community sector for nearly seven years, sir. I have made the conscious decision to work without counting my hours, to weave my values into my job, to accept working conditions that are often less than glorious.

I come across many people and stories. From where I stand, Bill 10 has a name. As do the education cuts! In fact, come to think about it, name any one of your austerity measures and I can certainly put a face to each one of them. Continue reading

Minister Barrette wants to act quickly (Le Devoir)

By Jocelyne Richer – La Presse canadienne à Québec
Originally published on February 6, 2015
See original French text here:

The anticipated adoption of the project of Bill 10 before the end of the day, thanks to a gag [literal translation, meaning to “invoke closure”, a parliamentary procedure limiting debate to force the passing of a law] decreed by the government, is only one of three steps seeking a major transformation in the health network in the coming months.

Before the parliamentary session even begins next Tuesday, MNAs had to present themselves in the chamber early Friday morning as part of the government’s decision to impose a term on the usual procedure to force the immediate adoption of Bill 10, which would abolish the health agencies and reduce the number of establishments in the network from 182 to 33.

Continue reading

An Exhausting Year for Health Care (Le Devoir)

Minister Barrette has antagonized the system with his reforms

By Amélie Daoust-Boisvert
Originally published on: January 3, 2015
See original French version here:

The Minister of Health and Social Services (MSSS; ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux) is often compared to an ocean liner reluctant to change course. 2014 was marked by an election and the arrival of a minister who launched several rash reforms that have antagonized the system against a backdrop of cuts. Has the ship’s wheel turned?

Elections, major bills being tabled, a budgetary severity that inevitably must affect services : the year in politics, as far as health care is concerned, has been far from easy. In spite of Minister Gaétan Barrette’s willingness to set the machine in motion, strait into high gear at that, it’s clear that it will be some time before results can be seen.

We should note that several issues have progressed in 2014. In February, under the Parti Québécois government, the Public Mother’s Milk Bank was launched, making the precious resource available to preterm infants. Hema-Québec, which manages the bank, has not had much difficulty in recruiting approximately 300 donors necessary to feed 1000 premature infants. It’s a success: the path is clear to widen the scope of the bank in 2015. Continue reading