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Matt Wiebe, MLA Concordia
March 16, 2017

Concordia Health & Fitness Centre

Madam Speaker, the Pallister government has recklessly cut $1 billion in funding for a wide range of important health care projects throughout our province, including the Park Manor Personal Care Home, northern health clinics in Thompson and The Pas, the community clinics in St. Vital and the QuickCare clinic in St. Boniface.

The affected communities were counting on these critical investments to improve health care outcomes for their families and for generations to come. One particular project, which is still awaiting approval, is the Concordia Health & Fitness Centre. Families are now waiting to find out whether or not this much-needed project will be built.

The previous government was committed to this initiative and took steps to move the project forward. We heard from the board several times, and though we recognized it was an ambitious project, it was clear that the project had to go forward for the sake of the health of future generations.

The provincial funding was in place and the process to secure federal funding were in motion. The Concordia Foundation also worked hard to raise their portion of the funds. The whole community truly came together collectively to ensure that this project would succeed.

Initiatives like the Concordia Health & Fitness Centre are an important part of the continuum of care from prevention to treatment, to recovery and rehabilitation. Modelled after the centre at Seven Oaks, this centre would provide a much-needed location for those needing wellness programs. Concordia Health & Fitness was further meant to be a hub for other services, like child care, nutrition counselling and physiotherapy.

To shut down this project now, without any alternative or plan, is deplorable. This government's actions were ideologically motivated by an austerity approach to health care that places outdated economic myths ahead of patient care.

Madam Speaker, this is unacceptable. Manitobans expect and deserve a government that will act in their best interest, not one that cancels vital health projects and doesn't provide alternatives. Our NDP team will continue to fight for Manitobans and the services that they deserve.

Thank you, Madam Speaker.