34 jobs eliminated at Hamilton-area LHIN as Ford government merges health agencies
None of the jobs are related to 'direct patient care,' says spokesperson
Fifteen employees of the Hamilton Niagara Haldimand Brant LHIN will lose their jobs as Ontario's government merges the provinces 20 regional health networks into one new, super-agency.
That's on top of another 19 "back-office" roles that are currently vacant and also be eliminated, according to a spokesperson for health minister Christine Elliott.
"None of the impacted positions provide direct patient care," stated Travis Kann in an email to CBC News.
The province is consolidating 14 local health integration networks, Cancer Care Ontario, eHealth Ontario and other agencies into a new organization called Ontario Health.
The local job losses are part of province-wide cut that will cut 825 positions, including 416 "back-office" jobs and 409 positions that are currently unfilled, says Kann.
An official with the LHIN declined to comment when contacted by CBC News, instead directing all questions to the ministry.
Premier promised no jobs would be lost
The cuts are aimed at getting rid of duplication in areas including communications, human resources, planning, data analytics and financial services, he added.
The government says it expects to save about $250 million in 2019. Kann said that money will be reinvested in "direct patient care" including more long-term care beds, home care and new funding for a dental program for low-income seniors.
Kann described the move as a "far better use of taxpayer dollars."
Premier Doug Ford repeatedly promised during last year's election that "not a single person will lose their job" under his government.
While speaking near Sudbury Wednesday, he denied that he had broken that pledge, adding the qualifier "front-line" to his original promise.
"I'll stick with my quote: 'No front-line person will lose a job."
with files from the Canadian Press