QUEEN’S PARK – The hydro bill at Sudbury’s Health Sciences North has soared by almost $1 million over a five-year period at the same time as their hydro consumption has gone down, all while the Wynne government is underfunding health care across Ontario – putting even more pressure on patient care.
“Health care is at a tipping point in Ontario,” said Horwath. “There have already been frontline workers laid off at many hospitals, and with skyrocketing hydro bills, hospitals are being squeezed tighter.
“It’s clear that hydro costs are hurting families in more ways than one – it’s hurting people every month when the bill comes, but it’s also hurting the services we count on, like hospitals, schools and city services like community centres.”
Health Sciences North’s electricity costs increased by almost $1 million in five years at the same time as they reduced their hydro consumption by 9 per cent. That information was revealed in documents obtained by the NDP through access to information laws.
“Hospital staff are doing the best they can, but they’re being asked to do more with less by Premier Kathleen Wynne and her Liberal government,” said Horwath. “Wait times are already too long. Staff are already run off their feet. How can the hospital be expected to continue provide high quality patient care when Premier Wynne is squeezing them like this?”
Horwath recently released an NDP plan to cut hydro bills by as much as 30 per cent, which includes putting Hydro One back into public hands – a move that will return an additional $7 billion to the province, which can be invested in Ontario services like hospitals. The NDP plan is in stark contrast to the Wynne government’s band-aid approach – a borrowing deal that will force people to pay as much as $40 billion in interest to bankers.
Horwath has also said an NDP government would stop the Wynne hospital cuts, and properly reinvest in health care.
“By focusing on herself and her party, Premier Wynne has driven Ontario hospitals to their breaking point,” said Horwath. “I know we can do better for the people of Hamilton and for every Ontarian. The NDP hydro plan is an important first step.”