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  • Writer's pictureOntario Nurses' Association

Nurses and health-care professionals picket to protest profits in nursing homes

Media Statement: Nurses and health-care professionals picket to protest profits in nursing homes

For-profit Extendicare CEO keynote speaker at business breakfast

Toronto, ON, April 30, 2024 – Earlier this morning, dozens of nurses and health-care professionals – members of the Ontario Nurses’ Association (ONA) – picketed outside the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management to urge Extendicare CEO Dr. Michael Guerriere to put resident care over profits. Guerriere was keynote speaker at a breakfast meeting where his topic was, “Thinking Differently: Recreating a Health System We Are Proud Of.”

Dr. Michael Guerriere is president and chief executive officer of Extendicare. He also chairs the Health and Life Sciences Advisory Board at the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto, and is a member of the Advisory Board at Georgian Partners.

ONA Provincial President Erin Ariss, RN, notes, “I find it ironic that Dr. Guerriere was speaking about how he thinks a health system should be recreated to instil pride. Perhaps he should look at his own corporation first. Extendicare – Canada’s largest for-profit nursing homes chain – is raking in multi-million-dollar profits on the backs of vulnerable residents. They are not receiving the quality and safety of care they need because of understaffing. It’s deplorable, and Dr. Guerriere must fix it.”

ONA’s front-line nursing homes staff – who are in conciliation this week with more than 190 for-profit nursing homes – are clear about their priorities for a new contract and willing to fight for them: they want quality resident care to be the top priority. ONA is demanding staff-to-resident ratios and equal wages with hospitals. Front-line staff know that achieving these priorities will vastly improve the quality-of-care residents receive.

“We have seen the very clear and significantly poorer outcomes for residents of for-profit homes compared to non-profit homes,” notes Ariss. “The Extendicares in the province receive generous taxpayer funding and skim profit off the top, unchecked. They understaff and underpay workers to maximize profit and their shareholders come before providing the care they are entrusted to deliver. ONA is loud and clear: the days of corporate greed overruling the needs of our vulnerable residents must end, and we intend to fight for it.”

ONA is the union representing 68,000 ONA registered nurses and health-care professionals, as well as 18,000 nursing student affiliates, providing care in hospitals, long-term care facilities, public health, the community, clinics and industry.

To arrange an interview, contact: ONA Media


Put more pressure on Extendicare to meet nurses and PSW demands for #BetterStaffingBetterCare


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