SEIU Local 1 Canada

SEIU Local 1 Canada

November 06, 2009 13:57 ET

SEIU Local 1 Canada: Mt Sinai Chair Under Pressure to Resign

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Nov. 6, 2009) - The chair of the board of Mt Sinai hospital was called on to resign today after board members jumped the queue and received the H1N1 vaccination ahead of priority groups.

Hospital chairman Lawrence S. Bloomberg and members of the board were treated early even though public health officials had been instructed to prioritise high-risk groups, including pregnant women and children from six months to five years of age, according to the Service Employees International Union.

"What we are seeing evokes scenes from the Titanic, the privileged pushing to the front and leaving vulnerable women and children to a chilling fate," said Sharleen Stewart, President of SEIU Local 1 Canada after another example of an elite group queue jumping.

The board of the hospital was given special treatment by the hospital under the direction of CEO Joseph Mapa, according to SEIU. The board awarded Mr Mapa a salary last year of $677,907.

"This was a serious ethical lapse by the board and the CEO and a profound error of judgment by the chairman. The chair is left with no choice but to resign," said Ms. Stewart, who represents 46,000 healthcare workers in Ontario.

"If our children or loved ones fall ill, we want to know that the hospital we send them to is infection free, that there are healthy staff available to care for them, and that the medicine our government provides for our well being is not distributed to the privileged few," she added

The hospital was warned repeatedly by the union of a breakdown in infection control at Mt Sinai before management were forced to declare an outbreak of H1N1 at the site, according to SEIU.

CHRONOLOGY

Oct 20: After repeated warnings by the union were ignored, a member of Mt Sinai staff raises the alarm publicly about the collapse of infection control measures and a warning is issued about the risk of an H1N1 outbreak if staff levels are not addressed

Oct. 20 – 25: No action is taken by Mt Sinai to address staff levels

Oct. 26: Members of the board of Mt Sinai are offered the flu shot

Oct. 28: Mt Sinai forced to publicly declare an H1N1 outbreak

Contact Information

  • SEIU Local 1 Canada
    Pat Chastang
    (647) 237-7348