Letter to the Premier, June 2013

May 9th, 2013

Kathleen Wynne, Premier 
Legislative Building 
Queen’s Park 
Toronto ON M7A 1A1

premier@ontario.ca

Dear Premier,

Re: Parking fees at Ontario hospitals

We write you today about the issue of parking fees at Ontario hospitals. We are concerned about the rising cost of parking at local hospitals. We believe that the hospitals should be not required to charge patients, their caregivers, visitors and staff ever-increasing amounts to meet budget targets. We think that this practice places an unacceptable burden on a captive market of the sick and aged populations of Ontario.

We have met with many representatives, listed below, to bring the issue to the attention of those who have an interest and those who have the power to make change.

We started three years ago, when we met with the local hospital CEO, Janet Beed, who believes that her facility is required by the HAPS prioritization schedule to maximize revenues from parking. Further, we have a letter from Kim Baker, CEO of the Central LHIN, declaring this to be a matter of hospital policy. We have been informed through the office of our MPP, Dr. Helena Jaczek, that the Ministry of Health has not mandated revenue generation from parking fees. There appears from these statements to be a real difference of opinion about whether or not parking fees must be a substantial revenue source for the hospitals.

We have prepared a web site at www.fairhospitalparkingcharges.org and refer you to it for background on our efforts.

We would like to understand how the parking charges became a revenue source for Ontario hospitals.  Further, we believe the people of Ontario would like to be consulted on this matter of ethical treatment of our fellow citizens. A policy review may well be in order.

Although we have repeatedly requested an audience with the Minister of Health or a senior representative, we have not yet been successful.

 

 

 

We would like to meet with you or your senior representative to discuss this matter.

We look forward to an early reply to our request.

With respect,

Alan Powell
Elizabeth Plashkes
John Hazlewood

cc. Dr. Helena Jaczek, MPP, Oak Ridges-Markham

 

Meetings with

  • Janet Beed, CEO and Rob Bull, CFO, MSH
  • Helena Jaczek, MPP
  • Suzette Strong, MSH Foundation
  • Jack Heath, Deputy Mayor, Markham
  • Wayne Emmerson, Mayor, Whitchurch Stouffville
  • Carolina Moretti, Ward 4 Councillor

Phone discussions with

  • Janet Beed
  • Dr. Brian Goldman
  • Rick Jansen of OPSEU

Motions of support from the following communities:

  • City of Markham
  • Town of Whitchurch Stouffville
  • Town of Uxbridge
  • Town of Aurora
  • Town of Newmarket

Media coverage includes:

  • Local media interviews in Markham Economist and Sun
  • The Stouffville Free Press
  • CBC – White Coat, Black Art – November, 2012
  • CMAJ – Editorial by Dr. R. Kale – January, 2012

 Additional note: The Cities of Pickering and Vaughan and the Towns of Richmond Hill, East Gwillimbury and King City                  

                               have also passed supportive resolutions

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