10/17/10

Conservatives trying to drink whisky out of a bottle of wine in Simcoe

Progressive Conservative MPP and former cabinet minister, Jim Wilson has started three petitions to keep medical laboratory services in Stayner, Tottenham and Elmvale,  small communities in Simcoe county.

All well and good. The centralization of medical laboratories in rural areas is causing people to travel further
and wait longer for services. It's good to see a Conservative politician oppose the loss of small town health services. (And we will see if he sticks to it if the PCs are elected next year.)

But in two of the three communities where Wilson has started his campaign, the labs are and run by large, for-profit corporations, Lifelabs and Gamma-Dynacare.

And that's the rub.


It is completely appropriate to have a political process about public services. It happens all the time.  The political process will ultimately determine whether demands from within the community will be afforded -- or not.

But you can't run a for-profit business the same way. Private businesses make private decisions, based  on their ability to make a profit. -- If they don't make a profit, they can't stay in business for long. 


That is one reason why public services, rather than private businesses, are more appropriate to meet certain public needs.  They have to be accountable to the public -- not just to investors seeking to make a profit.


dallan@cupe.ca

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