I apologize to our guests for the challenges they're experiencing in delivering their messages.
I want to start off with our guests from CUPE. I want to thank both of you for sharing your stories.
My mother was a long-term care aide and my brother still is a nurse's assistant working in a long-term care facility. On your comment regarding physical damage and violence, that is the reason why my mother had to retire early. She still has steel rods in her back and is mobility challenged because of violence. That also led me to take the steps that my colleague Mr. Davies has taken in previous Parliaments, in putting forth a piece of legislation on violence against our health care workers. Earlier this year, I tabled Bill C-211, which includes the issue of violence against health care workers and first responders, so I thank you for your comments.
Ms. Vyce, in a recent article, your president, Michael Hurley, of CUPE's Ontario Council of Hospital Unions, was quoted as saying that “more than 20% of [their] confirmed cases are health care workers, with 68 testing positive so far” and that “[s]uch high numbers suggest workers don't have adequate PPE”.
When you look at the numbers of health-care workers who are currently reported as having COVID against the number of cases in the general population, [one] can only conclude that there has been a colossal failure to protect health-care workers and that is all about failures of ordering enough equipment.
Do you stand by your president's comments?