October 31, 2017 11:33 am
Updated: November 1, 2017 9:09 am

Exclusive: Manitoba nurse laid off says province has broken promise

A Manitoba nurse says despite assurances from the WRHA and the nurses union, she’s out of a job. Global's Zahra Premji reports.

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A Manitoba nurse said she’s out of a job after what she calls broken promises from the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority and the Province of Manitoba.

On October 20, 40 nurses were laid off from Victoria Hospital as a part of the restructuring of the Manitoba Health Care system and the conversion of Victoria Hospital in to an Urgent Care Centre.

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READ MORE: 40 Winnipeg nurses to lose their jobs at Victoria Hospital as of Friday: Union

In an exclusive interview with Global News, one of the 40 nurses, who asked to remain anonymous, said she was expecting a job after the lay off as the WRHA had been promising.

“I ended up getting laid off and no job was offered to me after that,” she said.

She said she wants honesty from both parties because she’s being left in limbo with very few answers as to if and when she’ll get a job.

RELATED: ER at Winnipeg’s Victoria Hospital officially converted to Urgent Care

In August, Karlee Blatz with Labour Relations with the WRHA said anyone who wanted a job from Victoria Hospital would receive one.

“Ultimately we are confident that every nurse who wants a job within the region will be able to have a job,” Blatz said.

But, the nurse who spoke to Global News said that’s not the case for her and 39 of her colleagues.

“They have nothing left. It’s tough, it’s tough to hear that you know you’re going to be ok, we’re going to find you something and then all of a sudden there’s nothing there,” the nurse said.

She said she has had no choice but to resort to living on employment insurance until something hopefully pops up at another hospital.

The nurse said so far she’s found it extremely difficult to get a job elsewhere as many other nurses with more seniority than her are also vying for the same positions.

“I lost my job. There’s no jobs that are hiring out there,” the nurse said.

A spokesperson for the Manitoba Nurses Union said by laying off nurses, the lives of patients are being put in jeopardy.

Last week Manitoba’s Health Minister, Kelvin Goertzen, said patient care is being prioritized as the number one concern during this restructuring.

“We’re building a health care system now that is reflective and responsive to patient needs…we have to put patient care first,” Minister Goertzen said.

But the union said there are more patients and now less nurses to help them.

RELATED: Report shows deaths, critical incidents of patients in care: Manitoba Health

The nurse who Global News spoke to agreed.

“I felt very unsafe practicing when they sent us to places we’ve never been before,” the nurse said.

She fears that if nurses are being given false hope, that may also prove to be true for patients.

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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