The organizers had to put out more chairs as the audience filled the small room in the Oshawa Seniors Centre.
Upstairs they were playing Bingo, downstairs about 50 people came to talk about their frustrations with a health care system that is failing them.
NDP Health critic France Gelinas said there was a silver lining to the proroguing of the provincial parliament – it was an opportunity for her to get out and talk to citizens across Ontario about the care they are receiving.
Gelinas was part of a panel of three this night: OPSEU’s Sara Labelle and the Ontario Health Coalition’s Natalie Mehra rounded out the bill. An Oshawa civic politician, Amy England, did the facilitation. But most of the talking this evening would come from the audience, not the front of the room.
The owner of a supportive housing facility railed against a forced merger by the Local Health Integration Network.
Another complained about having to leave a crowded ER at Lakeridge Health because the noise was “like a rock concert.” He wanted to know what the statistics were on people who left the ER against medical advice.
One of the event organizers told the heartbreaking story of her lengthy struggle to reunite her elderly parents in the same long-term care facility.
“This is cruel – there is no reason for this,” Gelinas said.