I ran a quick google search to see if I could find some more impartial background, but the best I could find is this five month old article from the St. Catherines Standard.
Labour threat looms for hospital swap
By Peter Downs
Thursday, March 03, 2005 - 01:00
Local News - A potential labour relations battle is brewing over the swap of roles and properties between the Niagara Health System and Hotel Dieu Health Sciences Hospital.
The union representing NHS support staff at Shaver Hospital and Niagara Rehab is threatening to fight plans to switch their employer to the Hotel Dieu.
“In my opinion, it’s putting the whole issue of the transfer of services and programs between the NHS and Hotel Dieu in jeopardy,” said Marty Parker, union representative with the Service Employees International Union, representing approximately 1,900 NHS clerical and support workers.
The NHS and Hotel Dieu announced Wednesday their intended role change will be delayed by more than four months to Aug. 8 to honour legal and contractual obligations to employees.
Last November, the two hospital corporations struck a new restructuring agreement and abandoned plans to be partners in a $280-million hospital complex slated for west St. Catharines.
The new agreement gives the NHS sole governance of the planned facility, which would replace St. Catharines General Hospital and include a regional cancer centre.
Under the plan, the NHS will take over all of Hotel Dieu’s programs and its Ontario Street assets and absorb its debt.
In return, the Dieu is to assume ownership and operation of Shaver Hospital — a chronic-care facility — and the adjacent Niagara Rehab site in south St. Catharines.
The NHS and the Dieu had initially been asked by the Ministry of Health to set April 1 as a target date to take on their new governance roles.
But because unionized employees working for both organizations require five months’ notice of transfer, the swap date had to be postponed.