Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE)

Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE)
Ontario Council of Hospital Unions (OCHU)

Ontario Council of Hospital Unions (OCHU)

November 21, 2017 09:14 ET

Media Advisory: High number of Ontario hospital nurses and PSWs polled say they were assaulted at work, but how does North Bay hospital compare?

NORTH BAY, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Nov. 21, 2017) - New polling, being released on Wednesday (November 22, 2017, 1:00 p.m.) at a media conference in North Bay (120 Lakeshore Drive) shows that assaults on hospital staff are happening with alarming frequency. How North Bay Regional Health Centre (NBRHC) compares to those provincial violence rates will be highlighted.

North Bay Regional Health Centre has come under scrutiny following the firing of a nurse who spoke publicly about workplace violence and the release of a poll in 2016 showing high rates of violence against nurses and personal support workers at the hospital.

Earlier this fall, the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), through its hospital division, the Ontario Council of Hospital Unions (OCHU/CUPE), polled 1,976 members (the majority - 1,568 of them women) working in hospitals in seven Ontario communities. The sample included hospital staff working at large urban hospitals, some with forensic psychiatric units, and mid-size hospitals and one rural hospital.

In the 2017 poll, respondents were asked similar questions to those asked of North Bay hospital staff in April 2016. These included questions on whether they had experienced different forms of violence and how often - from at least one incident to over nine incidents - in an average year. The poll also probed the prevalence of sexual violence and harassment, and staff perceptions of employer reprisal when workers do report incidents.

"Whether it is physical, verbal or sexual, Ontario hospital staff face the potential threat of assault with every shift regardless of what type of hospital they work at," says OCHU president Michael Hurley, who, along with Scott Sharp who was attacked at Guelph hospital by a patient, will be in North Bay to release the poll findings.

OCHU is asking the province for amendments to the Ontario Occupational Health & Safety Act and the Public Hospitals Act that would better protect hospital staff.

Contact Information

  • Michael Hurley
    President OCHU/CUPE

    Stella Yeadon
    CUPE Communications