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Press Release

Frontline Staff React to Report on CEO pay

Canada NewsWire

TORONTO, Dec. 8, 2011 /CNW/ - Runaway executive compensation at Ontario's hospitals needs to be capped by the province so savings can be invested in vital services like mother-and-infant health programs and senior care, according to the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), which represents more than 50,000 frontline healthcare workers in Ontario.

Frontline staff dismissed efforts by the CEO of the Ontario Hospital Association (OHA) to use a self-appointed panel to deflect mounting frustration over the failure to rein in CEO pay - which continues to soar as executives pocket double-digit pay increases despite calls for restraint, according to public sector salary disclosures.

SEIU pointed out that in announcing the self-appointed panel on CEO pay, the OHA failed to disclose the head of the panel is also the CEO of the Canadian Council of Chief Executives - and called for full disclosure of all payments, expenses and honorariums paid to panel members by public hospitals.

"The CEO of the hospital association has retained the CEO of Canada's very own CEO association to review CEO pay - and tried to call it independent. Really? Do they think the rest of us were born yesterday?" asked Sharleen Stewart, head of SEIU.

"To top it off, the OHA added to their self-appointed panel a member of the board of Sun Life Financial, which recently approved a whopping 115% raise for the CEO of the Bay Street firm to bring the executive's compensation up to $8.5-million. This is who hospital CEOs are taking advice from?"

"Hospital CEOs are out of touch and continue to take more than their fair share. This panel is about the wealthiest 1% covering for each other, while the other 99% of society gets shut out."

SEIU called for the province to cap hospital CEO pay, and convene a truly independent panel that would allow frontline staff, patients and their families to provide input on ways to reduce excessive layers of management at Ontario's hospitals and drive quality and value in the province's healthcare system.

WHAT: Reaction to the OHA panel on executive compensation policies and practices in Ontario hospitals

WHEN: Friday, December 9th, 2011, at 10:45 a.m.

WHERE: The Sutton Place Hotel, 955 Bay Street, Toronto, Ontario

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