Quebec’s “Nurses on the Move” Facebook page bans WSWS reporters for criticizing unions
12 May 2018
Two World Socialist Web Site reporters, banned from the Infirmières en mouvement (Nurses on the Move) Facebook page, have sent an open letter to its administrators protesting the anti-democratic action and insisting that “workers entering into struggle need access to a wide range of ideas.”
The recently-established Infirmières en mouvement Facebook page attracted more than 35,000 members after Quebec nurses, in some cases outside official union channels, mounted sit-ins and other protests. It quickly became a forum for nurses and other health care workers to expose, and discuss how they can best fight against, the onerous working conditions and deteriorating patient care that has resulted from years of savage budget cuts imposed by all levels of government.
Several nurses have used this forum to directly criticize the union that represents the vast majority of Quebec nurses, FIQ (or in English, the Interprofessional Federation of Health of Quebec). Like the other unions, both public and private sector, FIQ has suppressed opposition to the austerity policies of successive Liberal and Parti Québécois (PQ) governments.
A video showing FIQ President Nancy Bédard talking about a “positive” emergency meeting with Quebec Health Minister Gaétan Barrette provoked many hostile comments on Infirmières en mouvement.
Ridiculing Bédard’s and Barrette’s empty promises to institutionalize patient-nurse ratios, a young nurse from Laval writes: “Ha ha ha! That’s great! She might get us a free subscription to the review of the oiiq [the order responsible for regulating the nurses’ profession in Quebec]!” He added: “I’m sure she would…