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BRAMPTON Ontario Premier Ernie Eves and Health Minister Tony Clement are trying to ram through a secret deal to privatize Bramptons William Osler Hospital before the election, despite the publics expectations of accountability, as highlighted in a new poll.

Hiding details of this deal and trying to fast-track the privatization of this hospital before the election, is yet another example of the Conservatives total contempt for democracy; says Michael Hurley, president of the Ontario Council of Hospital Unions (OCHU)/CUPE, which represents workers at the hospital.

According to a recent Vector poll of 1,023 Canadians, 87% agreed that privatization deals should be subject to public and media scrutiny. Four out of five surveyed said that the government must prove that privatization saves money, and over 70% said taxpayers should continue to own essential public services, such as hospitals.

The public has a right to see these deals and determine how the government plans to spend taxpayers money, insists Hurley. We will do whatever it takes, including taking legal action, to force Eves and Clement to cough up the ugly details of this deal.

The Government is modeling its hospital privatization plans on similar controversial, and now failed, privatization projects in Britain. Hurley, who conducted a personal tour of privatized hospitals in Britain, says privatization in England and the United States has led to bed shortages, longer waiting lists and the cancellation of critical operations, leading to higher death rates.

The Conservatives have been dodging questions and refusing to provide concrete information about this deal, says Hurley. We are demanding that Eves and Clement release full details of the deal to Ontarians, so voters can see the real dangers of privatization, before its too late.

For further information, please contact:
Michael Hurley, President Ontario Council of Hospital Unions
James Chai, CUPE Communications