(Annapolis Royal) - Workers at North Hills Care Centre in Granville Ferry are worried about their futures and need some questions answered.
Less than 40 days ago, on April 27 the official sod turning was held for the new Heart of the Valley Long Term Care Centre in Middleton which will replace North Hills. This brings the closure of the 50 bed, 22-year-old facility one step closer.
“The community does not need the loss of these long term care beds or the loss of more than 60 full-time, part-time, and casual jobs,” said Angela DeLong, president of CUPE local 3410.
“Residents of Middleton seem to be under the impression that they will automatically be able to access beds in the new facility,” DeLong added. “But with the ‘single point entry’ system for long term care beds, you don’t get preference just because you live in the community.”
To date the union has been unable to get adequate answers to questions such as:
Q. Who conducted the study that determined the relocation of 50 beds to Middleton and the necessary closure of North Hills? How was it done?
Q. What will happen to the North Hills facility after it closes given the significant amount of taxpayer’s money invested over the last 22 years?
Q. Will there be any compensation for workers who will not be able to make the additional 100 km a day round trip to Middleton (e.g. severances or a pension bridge)?
DeLong is urging the local community, business leaders, provincial, municipal, and town governments to get involved and help fight the closure of North Hills. She says the impact on the staff and local economy will be devastating to an area that has already faced many losses.
Carl Crouse Angela DeLong Catherine Buckie
CUPE National Rep. President, Local 3410 CUPE Communications Rep.
(902) 742-2286 (o) (902) 532-1544 (h) (902) 455-4180 (o)