May 31st, 2022

Stop the cuts: Horwath will fill 247 nurse vacancies in Ottawa, start training and hiring 2,050 more

OTTAWA – Ottawa area hospitals are short 247 nurses. Andrea Horwath was in Ottawa Tuesday to announce a plan to fill those vacant jobs, then start adding 2,050 more nurses so people in Ottawa get care faster.

“We can stop the waiting and the crowding if we stop the cuts, and staff up in health care,” said Horwath. “When your dad goes to the emergency room with chest pain, he should get medical attention and comfort fast. If you have to rush your child to the ER, you want someone to take a look right away. Together, we can make that happen.”

Horwath and the NDP have a plan to hire 30,000 nurses, and 10,000 personal support workers. That includes filling 247 current nurse vacancies in Ottawa hospitals, and hiring another 2,050 nurses for the city within the first term.

The NDP’s plan to recruit, retain and return nurses includes:

  • Scrapping Ford’s low wage policy, Bill 124, and increasing wages.
  • Creating new jobs for late-career and recently retired nurses to mentor and supervise new hires.
  • Addressing violence against health care workers.
  • Expediting recognition of nursing credentials of 15,000 internationally trained nurses so they can get to work in their field faster.

Horwath and the NDP will also ease pressure on hospitals with universal mental health care and dental coverage.

Right now in Ottawa, Queensway Carleton Hospital is warning of crowding and long waits in its emergency department. CHEO is also warning families that it’s going to be a long wait. The Ottawa Hospital says it’s struggling, pointing to staffing shortages as one of the reasons. Reports out of Hôpital Montfort point to crowding and long waits.

Ontario has the lowest ratio of RNs to people in Canada and has lost over 7,300 nurses in the last decade.

Kathleen Wynne’s Liberal government, which included Steven Del Duca, froze hospitals budgets and cut 1,600 nurses. Doug Ford was cutting before the pandemic, and his budget shows he’ll make at least $2.7 billion more in cuts if he gets the chance.

“If you want to stop the cuts and fix health care, I want you to know that together we can do it,” said Horwath. “On June 2, let’s come together, vote NDP, and choose health care where and when you need it.”


Current nursing vacancies in Ottawa

  • Ottawa Hospital: 118 nursing jobs posted
  • Queensway Carleton: 28 nursing jobs posted
  • CHEO: 25 nursing jobs posted
  • Montfort: 36 nursing jobs posted
  • Royal Ottawa Mental Health: 26 jobs posted
  • Elizabeth Bruyere: 14 jobs posted

[email protected]