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.

"This room is incredibly well used and important to the senior residents of Regina Village. It's important to our quality of life - it is just wrong for them to take this from us.  ‎We deserve it back,” said Mary West, chair of the Regina Village Residents Association.

NDP Deputy Leader Trent Wotherspoon said he wants the seniors to get the space back. He also called again for the government to deal with the root of the problem: the rapidly growing number of managers, consultants and administrative staff in health care which, in this case, pushed some homecare staff out of the health region’s office on Albert street and into the seniors’ recreation room.

“This government’s priorities are completely out of touch,” said Wotherspoon. “It’s kicking seniors out of a space at their home that’s really important to them – that matters to their health and well-being – in order to continue adding more Lean specialists and more administration that sucks dollars from the front lines of health care. It’s wrong for seniors and it’s wrong for patients.”

Regina Village is a large three-wing building that houses subsidized and life-lease apartments for seniors.

In Moose Jaw, seniors housing at Pioneers Village is being left vacant despite need because the government intends to convert some of the housing units into offices.

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For more information, contact:
Erin Morrison, NDP caucus