Jorge Maria LJI Reporter
Last week the building leased by Quyon’s CLSC was put up for sale by its owner with no notice to tenants or anyone else in the community.
The reaction from the community was swift, with many fearing the CLSC would eventually be closed. So, last Friday, a hasty press conference was called with MNA André Fortin and Doctor Ruth Vander Stelt in attendance.
For the last two years, the building owner, Joanne Marcotte, has been trying to get CISSSO to sign an updated lease agreement. The current lease has not been updated in 20 years, according to Fortin.
Marcotte would not say why she had put the building up for sale in an interview with The Equity. But she did express frustration with delays in dealing with CISSSO. She was adamant, however, that CISSSO is not delinquent on its rent payments.
Fortin received assurances from CISSSO that the location would not be closed and a final agreement between the owner and health authority is expected on Thursday.
“But at the same time, we’ve got a frustrated building owner who now has strained relationships with CISSSO, so until they sign on the dotted line, and everybody agrees to conditions, it’s really up in the air,” Fortin said.
Dr. Vander Stelt has been at the CLSC for 27 years. During the press conference, she spoke with passion about the ongoing problems within Quebec health services. At times, she was visibly upset.
After the media scrum,THE EQUITY had the opportunity to speak to her directly.
“It’s only getting worse,” she said.
Referring to the centralization of health in 2015, Dr. Vander Stelt said, “I’m not sure [CISSSO in Quebec City] know where Quyon is.” She is advocating for decentralization as a step to fixing some of these problems.
“I am very unhappy. I am very upset,” she said.
It is the local population that is the most upset. “They have a right to care,” she added.
The CLSC serves nurses for vaccinations, connects the community to social workers and provides care for babies and children. “[The community] come in for everything. I’m just a small part of the puzzle,” said Dr. Vander Stelt.