NDP concerned about patient care as layoffs announced at Pioneer Village

Seniors and their families are being let down by the Sask. Party’s failure to respond to mounting issues at Pioneer Village in Regina. With news of Pioneer Village staff receiving layoff notices, the NDP is pushing for a reversal of the Sask. Party’s failure to act to address crumbling long-term care homes, stay ahead of growing demand for beds and the continued erosion of quality, publicly delivered long-term care.

“The Sask. Party’s cuts to healthcare and their failure to invest in infrastructure are letting people down,” said NDP Leader Ryan Meili. “We have a growing seniors population, and not enough long-term care spaces to begin with. The Sask. Party has been dragging their feet on Pioneer Village, failing the seniors of our province.”

The Sask. Party has known since 2014 that Pioneer Village needed $60 million in repairs, even making it the top priority of the “Regina LTC replacement strategy”.  Instead of making a real plan that would have added beds, the Sask. Party sat on their hands and allowed Pioneer Village to crumble around staff and residents.

There are now 207 fewer beds for Regina seniors than there were in 2011. In May 2018, 94 residents were displaced, some of whom displaced Wascana Rehab Hostel tenants in June, with others moved out of their home communities due to lack of space.  Later that year, the Saskatchewan Health Authority announced there was more mould than anticipated, and it would be six to 12 months before residents could move back in. As the facility becomes increasingly uninhabitable, the government has announced they’ll be moving residents into private care homes that are more expensive despite lower standards of care.

“Waiting until the situation reaches a crisis point and then pretending to fix it by shifting to costly private care options is not the kind of leadership that Saskatchewan people expect,” Meili said. “Families deserve a government that will make high-quality patient care a priority.”