CBCradio

March 8, 2010

Pt 1: Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital- We started this segment with a clip of Katrine Conroy. She's the NDP MLA from Kootenay West. She posed that question in the BC legislature last week, after the Interior Health Authority cut three full-time operating room nursing positions at the Kootenay-Boundary Regional Hospital in Trail. 

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Pt 2: Maternal Health- Every year, almost four million babies born in the developing world die before they are a month old. And a woman dies in pregnancy or childbirth every 60 seconds.

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Pt 3: Women Farming Panel - We started this segment with a clip of Margaret Jwajiro, a full-time farmer in Torito in the Kabu district. She feels farm land rights should be equal and her sentiment is shared by millions of women all over the world ... women who plant, plough, pick, water, feed, milk and harvest. When it comes to small-scale farming, women outnumber men by a substantial margin. But they often have little or no control over the land they tend.

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It's Monday, March 8th.

The Harper government says it has listened to Canadians and that it will not tinker with the words to O' Canada.

Currently ... But just in case the whole Afghan detainee thing flares up again, it would like to know how everyone feels about having the Queen on our Loonie.

This is The Current.

Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital - Doctor & Nurse

We started this segment with a clip of Katrine Conroy. She's the NDP MLA from Kootenay West. She posed that question in the BC legislature last week, after the Interior Health Authority cut three full-time operating room nursing positions at the Kootenay-Boundary Regional Hospital in Trail.

As a result, the hospital will close one of its four operating rooms. But seventeen of the hospital's surgeons are proposing a radical solution. They say they are prepared to pay the O.R. nurses out of their own pockets in order to keep all the operating rooms open.

Seth Bitting is one of the doctors involved. He's an orthopedic surgeon at Kootenay-Boundary Regional Hospital. And Giselle Keenan is an O.R. nurse whose position has been cut and who could be hired back by the physicians if the plan goes ahead. They were both in Rossland, British Columbia.

Kootenay Hospital - Accountability

Frank Marino is a Health Service administrator with B.C.'s Interior Health Authority. That's the body that made the budget cuts. He wa in Warfield, British Columbia.


Maternal Health - Save the Mothers

We started this segment with a clip of Prime Minister Stephen Harper speaking in late January at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. And the numbers are shocking. Every year, almost four million babies born in the developing world die before they are a month old. And a woman dies in pregnancy or childbirth every 60 seconds.

Now, critics point out that there are considerable problems with maternal health here in Canada in northern and aboriginal communities. And last week's federal budget made no mention of funding for international maternal health. In fact, after this year, the foreign aid budget will be frozen.

But the fact that Prime Minister Harper has highlighted the issue as a priority for the G8 countries, is good news to Jean Chamberlain Froese. She is an obstetrician and the Director of the International Women's Health Program at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario. She's also the founding director of Save the Mothers, an organization that trains health care workers in the developing world with the goal of improving the health of mothers. Doctor Chamberlain Froese spends more than half of the year living and working in Uganda. And she was in Mukono, about an hour east of Kampala this morning.

Maternal Health - W8 Panel

While the members of the G8 have at least started paying lip service to maternal health, the members of the W8 are way ahead of them. The W8 is a group of eight women from India, Malawi, Georgia, Bangladesh, Mali, Thailand, the Philippines and Nicaragua. They are fighting for better health services and education, as well as the alleviation of poverty in their countries.

Two of the group's members joined Anna Maria in Toronto. Dorothy Ngoma is the Executive Director of the National Organization of Nurses and Midwives of Malawi. And Sandhya Venkateswaran is the convener of the 'Don't Break Your Promises' Coalition. It works to hold the Indian government accountable for making investments to realize its Millennium Development Goals.



Women Farming Panel

We started this segment with a clip of Margaret Jwajiro, a full-time farmer in Torito in the Kabu district. She feels farm land rights should be equal and her sentiment is shared by millions of women all over the world ... women who plant, plough, pick, water, feed, milk and harvest. When it comes to small-scale farming, women outnumber men by a substantial margin. But they often have little or no control over the land they tend.

In Africa, about 80 per cent of farmers are women. But they own less than 5 per cent of the farm land. And land ownership is just one of the problems that women who farm grapple with. This morning, on International Women's Day, we gathered a few people with some thoughts about how to address those problems.

Steffanie Scott is an Associate Professor in the Department of Geography and Environmental Management at the University of Waterloo. She was in Toronto. Ramata Thioune is a Senior Program Officer for Women's Rights and Citizenship with The International Development Research Centre. She's normally based in Dakar, Senegal but she was in New York City this morning. And Noemi Porro is an Anthropologist and a professor of natural resource management at the Federal University of Para in Brazil. And Vandana Shiva is the Director of The Research Foundation for Science, Technology and Ecology.

Last Word - Trouble In The Fields

We ended the program today with a musical thought about the difficulties of farming. We played Sarah Harmer's song Trouble In The Fields.

Music

Artist: Sarah Harmer
Cut: 8, Trouble in the Fields
Cd: Songs for Clem
Label: Cold Snap
Spine: CD 0855

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