Crowns raided, education cut – and the deficit is still $427 million

Sask. Party still refusing to tell families what they’ve cut, and what they’ll cut next

Brad Wall cut education by $51.3 million and raided Crown corporations for an extra quarter-billion dollars – and he’s still running a massive, $427-million deficit, and refusing to tell us what he’ll cut next.

“The Sask. Party let us down hugely during incredibly good times for our province, and it’s very obvious now that we can’t trust the Sask. Party during tight times,” said NDP Leader Cam Broten. “They drained the Rainy Day Fund during very sunny years by spending wildly on their misplaced priorities – so it took them no time at all to launch us into a massive deficit. It’s absolutely unbelievable that they’ve put the province into this situation – broke and cutting services. We shouldn’t be in this position, but they blew through billions and left us with little to show for it. 

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Sask. Party won’t address domestic violence until budget is fixed

Vague poverty report contains no action, no resources

Under pressure to release a poverty reduction strategy, the Sask. Party put out a brutally vague and weak document Wednesday that concluded they won’t deal with partner violence until “the Province’s fiscal capacity allows.”

Saskatchewan has the highest rate of intimate partner violence, as well as the highest rate of domestic violence deaths. By “fiscal capacity,” the Sask. Party is likely referring to its own deficit of hundreds of millions of dollars.

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Records show patients waiting dangerously long in Moose Jaw’s ER

New information on emergency room (ER) wait times in Moose Jaw shows that many patients who need to see a doctor within minutes are left in the waiting room of the new Lean-designed hospital for hours.

Documents obtained by the NDP via access to information laws show that 57 times in just 74 days, patients classified as 'emergent' or 'urgent,’ who should have seen a doctor within 15 and 30 minutes, respectively, waited hours.

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Surgical wait lists more than double since March

The number of people waiting more than three months for surgery has increased 115 per cent since the Sask. Party cut the surgical budget in March, and the number of people waiting longer than six months is up 131 per cent.

Those are the numbers from the government’s own Saskatchewan Surgical Initiative website. In March, the Sask. Party cut the budget for surgeries, deciding to do thousands fewer procedures this year, and health care has been further strained by cuts and layoffs since then.

“The province made some progress while times were good, but now that times are tight, we can’t trust them with surgeries. It’s the first place they made cuts,” said NDP Leader Cam Broten. “It’s shocking that they’re still blowing millions on the Lean program, but are cutting the things that really matter to patients and families.”

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Broten demands moratorium on health care layoffs until election

NDP Leader Cam Broten wants a ban on layoffs of front-line health-care workers until after the election, saying the Sask. Party’s new layoffs will hurt already-strained patient care.

“This election is about priorities,” said Broten. “The Sask. Party is keeping its Lean promoters, but taking health care workers away from bedsides. They’re keeping their bloated, highly paid management, but cutting understaffed acute care.

“Cutting patient care while spending big on waste is a choice that does not match families’ priorities. That’s why I’m calling for the Sask. Party’s planned health care layoffs to be put on hold for six weeks – because it doesn’t have to be this way and Saskatchewan people should have an opportunity to pass judgment on these plans.”   

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