LETTER: Laundry move doesn’t add up

Reader says laundry privatization will export jobs.

Re: Interior Health closer to privatizing laundry services in Nelson

As alternate director for RDCK Area E I toured Kootenay Lake Hospital Feb. 25 before the West Kootenay-Boundary Regional District Hospital Board meeting.

A plant supervisor took us through the laundry. He told us the equipment was good for another 11 years. Yet the IHA’s press release quoted in the Feb. 13 Nelson Star said privatizing would “avoid significant capital costs associated with replacing industrial laundry equipment.”

These two statements clearly don’t jibe. Interior Health (along with Vancouver’s Coastal Health) wants to contract out all its 15 regional laundries to a single corporation, so it appears that Kootenay Lake Hospital’s laundry is being sacrificed because some bigger Interior Health laundry needs new equipment the health authority has not budgeted for.

Interior Health has confirmed no business in the BC interior is capable of handling this amount of hospital laundry, so the contract will go to the Lower Mainland, exporting over a hundred jobs out of our rural area. In addition to more trucks and drivers, this will cost the contractor more gas and cause both more road repairs and more pollution and global warming. How can this save us money?

Private companies pay higher insurance costs and higher interest rates on borrowed funds than government entities. In addition they need to make a profit. How can this save taxpayers’ money?

The only answer I see is to pay the workers less, and perhaps have fewer workers. This usually leads to high turnover, which means fewer trained workers. Infection control in hospitals is a very serious business. Laundries are one of the keys. Are we risking our residents’ health by implementing this contracting out?

Pegasis McGauley

Harrop

Just Posted

VIDEO: Nelson Tennis Club’s new home opens

The revitalized courts above LVR had their grand opening Saturday

U.S. Court upholds Teck pollution ruling

Teck appealed a previous decision that it must pay $8.25 million in Colville Confederated Tribes’ court costs

Leafs rout Border Bruins 6-2

Nelson remains undefeated this season

Chamber jazz at St. Saviour’s in Nelson

Four prominent Kootenay musicians present originals and classic jazz repertoire

Home and Energy Show returns

The annual event takes place at the Prestige on Sept. 25

VIDEO: Monday Roundup

Sept. 24, 2018

Edmonton cannabis company revenues more than triples to $19.1 million

Aurora Cannabis revenues more than triple in fourth quarter

B.C. pharmacist suspended for giving drugs with human placenta

RCMP had samples of the seized substances tested by Health Canada

Seattle one step closer to NHL after arena plan approved

Seattle City Council unanimously approved plans for a privately funded $700 million renovation of KeyArena

Harvest Moon to light up B.C. skies with an ‘autumn hue’

It’s the first moon after the autumn equinox

Hockey league gets $1.4M for assistance program after Humboldt Broncos crash

Program will help players, families, coaches and volunteers after the shock of the deadly crash

Canada has removed six out of 900 asylum seekers already facing U.S. deportation

Ottawa had said the ‘overwhelming majority’ had been removed

Appeal pipeline decision but consult Indigenous communities, Scheer says

The federal appeals court halted the Trans Mountain expansion last month

Most Read