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Indigenous health care needs won’t be served by Ford government’s plan

Saturday, July 6th, 2019

… by centralizing health care decisions, the Ontario government is… returning to a top-down approach where health-care needs are decided by the few for the many… The new agency threatens to derail nearly three years of negotiations between Ontario, the federal government and Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) concerning turning over decision-making power about health care to 49 northern nations so they can bring health-care services closer to home… Suicide, diabetes, addiction and food insecurity must be tackled by Indigenous people for Indigenous people.

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When will Canada treat First Nations women and men as equals?

Wednesday, February 27th, 2019

… the change dubbed “6(1)(a) all the way,” would give all First Nations women and their descendants born prior to April 17, 1985, the exact same Indian status designation as status men and their children. The Senate passed this vital legal change but it was challenged by the government and the bill sent back to the Senate. The feds fear the “all the way” amendment could mean an extra 80,000 to 2 million people will claim to be status Indians.

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Deb Matthews slashes fees for OHIP services to save $338 million

Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

May 07 2012
Health Minister Deb Matthews announced Monday there would be 37 changes to the OHIP fee schedule, targeting hundreds of services provided by cardiologists, radiologists and ophthalmologists. The doctors claim this will mean longer waits in emergency wards and for test results — and warn that patients could expect a harder time finding a family doctor or a specialist because of fewer physicians. “Our doctors are the best paid in Canada,” said Matthews… “Instead of another raise for doctors, we need a real wage freeze so we can invest in more home care,”

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Liberals warn teachers, doctors over pay

Friday, April 13th, 2012

Apr 12 2012
Mired in debt and at risk of an election by late May, Ontario’s minority Liberal government took dead aim at teachers and doctors Thursday in a bid for public support to keep their wage hike demands to zero. Education Minister Laurel Broten warned elementary teachers of 10,000 layoffs unless they accept a pay freeze while Health Minister Deb Matthews told physicians “I am here to stand up for taxpayers.”

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NDP demands tax credits worth hundreds of millions to support Liberal budget

Tuesday, April 10th, 2012

Apr 10 2012
Horwath unveiled her job creation tax credit plan… The idea is to reimburse employers for 10 per cent of the salary paid to a new hire during the first year of employment, up to a maximum of $5,000. The government is facing a $15.2 billion deficit and needs NDP support in order for the budget to pass. If not, the province could soon plunge into another election. The other two NDP proposals include an extra tax placed on the rich and $418,000 salary caps for public sector executives, such as hospital chiefs… The NDP also want to see natural resources pulled from the ground in northern Ontario processed in the province.

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‘Secret’ G20 law to be scrapped

Thursday, February 23rd, 2012

Feb 22 2012
The Liberals are replacing the archaic “secret law” police used to place hundreds of people under arrest during the G20 summit in 2010. The Public Works Protection Act has been shelved in favour of a new bill that would apply only to securing power plants and courthouses, said Community Safety Minister Madeleine Meilleur. The legislation, introduced Wednesday, was created out of recommendations of former chief justice Roy McMurtry in the wake of the G20 fiasco. It is far narrower in scope than the old law.

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Drummond Report: Hospital amalgamations and more power for LHINs among recommendations

Wednesday, February 15th, 2012

Feb 15 2012
The prescription to fix Ontario’s health system may sound harsh — amalgamating hospitals, reducing the powers of doctors in policy decisions and empowering local health integration networks — but it may be necessary for patients, says the commission in charge of reforming public services… “The health-care system is not really a system,” the commission writes. “What we have is a series of disjointed services in many silos.”

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UN holds private meeting with native youth

Friday, February 3rd, 2012

Feb 02 2012
They meet Monday with the UN committee on the rights of the child… The Geneva meeting is small and private — the six youths and the 18-member UN committee. Travelling with them are Ontario Child Advocate Irwin Elman and University of Alberta professor Cindy Blackstock, who is executive director of the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society… It is discriminatory not to give First Nations kids the same chances as other Canadian children, said Blackstock.

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McGuinty vows to improve First Nations schools

Tuesday, November 22nd, 2011

Nov 22 2011
It is time for Ottawa to engage in an “important” conversation about “unleashing” the provincial government to help improve standards, he said. “They are not good at education. They don’t do education, we do education. And there are now international authorities who say we have the best public education system in the English-speaking world.” Ottawa must correct the funding imbalances so native kids receive the same funding as other children in Ontario schools, McGuinty added. “Let us take this on. Let us work with First Nations and develop a curriculum that speaks to their needs and aspirations”…

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Ontario stands to save $2 billion in drug reforms

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011

August 3, 2011
Ontario should save $2 billion over the next three years as 44 medications — from cholesterol fighting Crestor to the targeted cancer therapy Gleevec — come off patent and the fruits of drug reform take hold. Savings made will be poured back into reducing the ballooning $47 billion health-care budget and buying new medications under the Ontario Drug Benefit Plan… Drugs make up about 10 per cent of the province’s $47 billion health spending, and 32 per cent of the $25 billion Ontarians spend on private health care.

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