Members from the Liberal and NDP Caucus once again shut down an opportunity to discuss doctor recruitment.
Today at the Standing Committee on Public Accounts, PC MLA Tim Halman put forward the topic of doctor recruitment, stemming from the 2017 Auditor General Report. Liberal MLAs Hugh MacKay, Brendan MacGuire, Suzanne Lohnes-Croft, Ben Jessome and Rafah DiCostanzo and NDP MLA Lisa Roberts voted it down.
“Where is the sense of urgency? We have a crisis. There are thousands of Nova Scotians without doctors; hospital closures stretching into months; and most recently, a vital clinic in Lower Sackville was forced to close,” says Halman. “Healthcare is unravelling across the province. This can’t wait for another month or another committee. I’m ashamed that my Liberal and NDP colleagues don’t feel the same.”
Public Accounts meetings have become few and far between since Liberal members used their majority to limit the once weekly meetings to monthly and restricted topics to items in Auditor General Reports. This has left opportunities to question government leaving the committee that once met between 20-29 times annually, to no more than 12 meetings.
“This once powerful committee used to be able to challenge government, ask tough questions on spending and public policy and keep them in line on behalf of Nova Scotians,” says Halman. “Now, the Liberals have reduced it to nothing more than an administration exercise. I truly believe this is possibly the best the Liberals could have dreamed of- governing and spending without accountability or consequence.”