Catholic Health Association of Canada (CHAC) has written to
the Prime Minister expressing strong disagreement about thee
manner in which the federal government is neglecting the needs
of all those who have been afflicted by hepatitis C due to
failures in the blood safety regulatory systems.
"The CHAC, in union with many other Canadians,
strongly urges the federal government to initiate action, with
the provincial governments, to provide just, compassionate and
prompt compensation for all people who have contracted
hepatitis C from tainted blood because of the failure of
government to adequately regulate blood safety," said
Gerald Herkel, CHAC Chairperson.
During the past few weeks serious concerns have been raised
as federal and provincial politicians have made claims and
counterclaims about who is responsible for compensating those
who have been afflicted. The public has been given false
information and spurious arguments have been put forward to
justify a policy decision to limit compensation. The CHAC
maintains that the argument that compensation for all will
threaten medicare is unfair in that it places those asking for
compensation in an adversarial stance with other Canadians. In
the meantime, those who are sick continue to be victimized.
Compassion, respect and justice are the cornerstones of
Canadian culture and the foundation of our health care system.
These values must be the governing principles that guide
efforts to address the needs of those who have been afflicted
by hepatitis C. "We believe that Canadians reject the
inherent unfairness of giving help to some of the injured and
not to others, based on questionable timelines," said Mr.
In its letter to Mr. Chrétien, the CHAC strongly
encourages the federal government to do the right thing by
providing compensation for all those who have been afflicted.
This is not a time for partisan politics. It is a time for
Parliament to speak for the conscience of Canadians who seek
only fairness, equity and justice.