By Gordon Lambie
Local Journalism Initiative
In the wake of a series of increasingly dire warnings from nursing staff across the Townships in recent weeks, including a sit-in at the Granby Hospital where nurses refused to work for a period of four hours over the weekend, Sophie Therrien of the FIQ-SPSCE, the union representing healthcare professionals in the Eastern Townships says that the time has come and gone for the CIUSSS de l’Estrie – CHUS to start cutting back on services to the population in the name of saving the system from collapse.
“It will certainly have an impact on the population, and we are disappointed to end up in that position because action should have been taken earlier, but the only option left is to cut certain services,” Therrien said, pointing out that the professionals represented by her union are worn out from repeated mandatory overtime and stressful working conditions. She acknowledged that service reductions are not something anyone wants, but argued that they are coming anyway, and in a less reparable way, if the system continues to use employees until they are at their breaking point.