Alberta seniors are victims of broken promises – Brian Mason
Beacon Staff Reporter
Alberta seniors are paying for the financial mismanagement of the Redford Tories, says the Alberta NDP after learning 49 publicly funded long-term care beds were cancelled at a Red Deer facility.
NDP Leader Brian Mason has released a copy of the two-page letter sent from Symphony Seniors Care, which owns two long-term care centres in Red Deer, to Alberta Health Services (AHS) about its decision to not provide the promised places.
“The Premier likes to talk about publicly funded health care but her government is closing publicly-funded facilities and reducing the quality of care received by seniors,” said Mason. “Seniors in Alberta deserve a high quality of care, and need a government with a plan for how to deliver that care.”
Dear Beacon readers. Please help us serve you better by filling out this brief survey form. We thank you for your feedback and your commitment to local online news.
Mason said that many recent announcements clearly illustrate that the PC Government cannot be trusted to keep its promises.
- After locking-out employees at the Aspen Ridge facility in Red Deer, Symphony Seniors Care announced that they will cancel their agreement with AHS to provide 49 publicly-funded beds, switching to an entirely privately funded model with reduced care, expected to cost seniors $3,800 – $4,500 per month.
- AHS announced the closure of the publicly-funded long-term care facility in Bashaw and seniors will be moved to a private facility.
- Capital Care announced plans Wednesday to eliminate 48 Licensed Practical Nursing positions in Edmonton.
“Redford has continued to promise not to cut frontline services, especially health care and education. But with a series of recent cuts and problems with seniors care, it is clear she has no intention of keeping her promises. Seniors are among the Albertans who will pay the price,” said Mason.
The Alberta seniors facility in Red Deer has been at the centre of a labour dispute with the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees over wage hike and has cancelled the contract. If the contract is not reviewed, nearly 50 seniors will have to be relocated within a year.
“The process to re-allocate existing residents will take up to one year,” said Symphony Senior Care’s Vice President (Operations) Kim Van Dam said in the letter.
“We will provide you and the residents with this 12 month period to find suitable accommodation. Like AHS, we wish to minimize any disruption to residents, and this gradual reduction in beds will help accomplish that goal. However, effective immediately we will not accept any new admissions for the Supportive Living Program unless they have been previously arranged and are scheduled to move in.”