More seniors being sent far from home is a step in the wrong direction: NDP

Waiting to move into a seniors care home is already hard on seniors and their families – moving them far away from home to wait is a further step in the wrong direction when it comes to seniors care, according to the NDP.

Seniors in the Regina Qu’Appelle Health Region will now be subject to a 150-kilometre radius first-bed policy, the health region said Tuesday. That means, a Regina senior waiting for a space in long-term care will wait in the first available bed – which may be as far away as Cupar, Long Lake Valley or Lestock. The policy comes into effect on July 1.

“We should be working hard to bring seniors closer to home. Closer to their family, family doctor and support system,” said Danielle Chartier. “Moving into a seniors home is a very traumatic time for many people, and this makes that even harder. There is a shortage of seniors care spaces in many communities, and this government should be fixing that by adding seniors care beds – not by shipping our loved ones away from their homes.”

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Broten wants government to stop scaling back rural health care

A day after touring the Craik and District Health Centre, and meeting with community members, NDP Leader Cam Broten again called on this government to refrain from scaling back health care services in the community.

“The people of Craik and area are not asking for anything that they haven't had for 100 years. They simply want to be able to keep their doctor and the vital health care services they deserve,” said Broten. “There’s no excuse for the Sask. Party government to be cutting back health care services in Craik, especially when the doctor wants to keep working there and keep saving lives there.”

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NDP push for action to support local businesses

With concerning job numbers released today by Statistics Canada, Saskatchewan's New Democrats are renewing their call for this government to promote and support local business.

Statistics Canada reported that Saskatchewan’s private sector lost 8,100 jobs over the last year. In total, Saskatchewan lost 3,200 full-time jobs in the last 12 months, while Manitoba added 14,700 jobs and Alberta added 55,100 jobs.

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Province raises water prices

The province is raising the rates for water by 15 per cent over the next 15 months for a number of cities and towns – yet another hit to cost of living that Saskatchewan families don’t need, according to the NDP.

“This government is asking Saskatchewan families to pay extra far too often,” said Buckley Belanger, NDP critic for SaskWater. “This government has raised the price of our power, gas, SGI, SaskTel internet and now another increase to water. Plus, the Sask. Party seems to expect that we can all find the money for private seniors care or home care, and private tutoring for our kids that are jammed into crowded classroom with no one-on-one help anymore.  

“For a lot of families, they’re not benefitting much from a decade of a strong economy – but they’re paying a lot more.”

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Seniors recreation space turned into office space; seniors locked out

As the government continues to add administration, management and consultants to health care, yet another space for seniors has been taken over. This time, the recreation room at Regina Village has been turned into office space – and the seniors who live there and used that space are upset, and they want it back.

Without any warning or consultation with residents, a lock was put on Regina Village’s recreation room door on Jan. 5. The Regina Qu’Appelle Health Region took over the constantly used common space to convert it to an office. Before that, the recreation room was for group sessions, clinics, family visits, bible study and meetings. The location of the room, accessed off of the main hall, means everything from exercise classes to church services, birthday parties, memorial services and more are disrupted by those displaced workers accessing the room.

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