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September 14, 2021

Federal parties have failed to prioritize health care

Federal Election
Media Release


Federal parties have failed to prioritize health care, say Canada’s nurses as they release election scorecard

September 14, 2021 (OTTAWA, ON) – The country’s largest nurses’ organization is expressing frustration over the lack of emphasis placed on supporting nurses and public health care by federal parties during this election campaign.

The Canadian Federation of Nurses Unions released its guide to federal platforms today, revealing a lack of clear and sufficient commitments to fix the nursing shortage and repair deep cracks in the country’s health care system that have been worsened by the pandemic.

“The nursing shortage has reached a critical level, yet the best election promises on offer are still only stopgap solutions. To say nurses are frustrated with this election would be an understatement,” said Linda Silas, president of the CFNU. “While nurses are pleased to finally hear some mention of the staffing shortage from federal parties, we need clear and comprehensive solutions to this crisis, not election soundbites.”

Silas recently called on all political parties to “stop planning in the dark” when it comes to health care, and to support the creation of a health workforce agency – modelled after what already exists for Canada’s construction industry – to bridge the gap between the nursing supply and public demand.

“If Canada’s next federal government fails to take urgent action to guarantee safe staffing levels, we can expect more nurses to leave the profession, resulting in even longer wait times, bed and ER closures, and less care for patients and residents.”

The CFNU’s platform guide reviews and analyzes the commitments made by four major federal parties in five priority areas: supporting nurses, seniors’ care, pharmacare, health care funding and child care.

“Canada’s nurses are urging all voters to cast their ballots for the best health care commitments on offer this election, and to join us as we continue to pressure our next government and representatives to step up for health care,” Silas concluded.

The CFNU’s guide to election platforms is available online:

Download the full analysis