Elected officials speak out on hospital project
THE JOURNAL FILE PHOTO/JOHN JANTAK
"While the emergency rooms of the region are overflowing, the CAQ stubbornly delays the deadline" - Marie-Claude Nichols
Vaudreuil MNA Marie-Claude Nichols once again asks the Coalition avenir Québec (CAQ) to back down on the issue of the Vaudreuil-Soulanges Hospital. A month ago, the Minister of Health and Social Services, Danielle McCann, announced that her government was abandoning the planned site for the future hospital in Vaudreuil-Soulanges.
While the CAQ was engaged in an election campaign to accelerate the construction of the hospital, this decision by the Health Minister will have the effect of delaying the schedule. It should be remembered that the site had been chosen by the 23 mayors of the Vaudreuil-Soulanges MRC, the City of Vaudreuil-Dorion and the Quebec government and that it meets the needs of this huge flagship project.
The overcrowding in the hospitals of the region remind us of the importance, and especially the urgency, to deliver this new hospital within the deadlines set by the previous government. I ask François Legault and his Minister of Health to back down. Citizens need this hospital. It's not time to go back to the drawing board. This decision is all the more strange since one of the sites considered by the CAQ government is located in a flood zone.
The MNA for Vaudreuil also deplores the fact that she was not invited to a working meeting between other elected officials from the region and the office of the Minister of Health and Social Services held on January 4. Only CAQ deputies were invited to this meeting. This partisanship has no place in this file. We surely share the same goal of providing health services quickly to the citizens of Vaudreuil-Soulanges.
Vaudreuil-Soulanges MRC statement on the area hospital
THE JOURNAL FILE PHOTO/COURTESY MRC VAUDREUIL-SOULANGES
Despite a decade of planning, zoning changes, and land expropriation, the newly elected CAQ government’s rejection of the proposed hospital site has raised the ire of local residents and elected officials.
The 23 elected members of the Municipalité régionale de comté Vaudreuil-Soulanges (MRC-VS) unanimously refuse the change of site of the Vaudreuil-Soulanges Hospital and ask for explanations from the Coalition pour l'avenir du Québec (CAQ) government.
It was at a special meeting of the MRC-VS council on December 20, 2018 that the 23 mayors of the MRC reiterated their position on the choice of site for the future regional hospital. The elected officials of Vaudreuil-Soulanges refuse to back down on the choice of the site and require a meeting with Danielle McCann, Minister of Health and Social Services, to obtain explanations.
It should be noted that media reports have been circulating since December 14 that the current government is considering going back on the site chosen by the 23 mayors of the MRC-VS, the City of Vaudreuil-Dorion and the Government of Quebec. However, the MRC has not received any official communication from the government regarding a site change. On the contrary, the last communication of Minister McCann, dated October 31, asked the MRC to modify its layout to plan the implementation of the hospital on the chosen site.
"We worked with all the partners in the community for nearly a decade to come up with a site that was unanimously approved, both at the level of the elected officials of the MRC, as well as stakeholders in the community and those of the Government of Quebec," said Patrick Bousez, prefect of the MRC-VS and mayor of the municipality of Rivière- Beaudette. “How can a government make such a decision without consulting the main players? This is not a record that must be led by partisanship; it is a public health issue. We must go ahead with this file to provide decent health care to our population of nearly 160,000 people.”
Council members unanimously passed a resolution to demonstrate that the position was maintained in terms of site selection and to ask the government for explanations.