UPDATED w/interview: Shawville Hospital “Pay-to-Park” Scheme


UPDATED-Interview with CHIP FM here.

We only visit hospitals when we’re at our most vulnerable, emotionally and physically. Apparently, the Centre intégré de santé et de services sociaux de l’Outaouais (CISSSO) believes that this vulnerability should extend to the wallets of Pontiac residents. The CISSSO Board of Directors, appointed by the provincial Quebec government, has decided that the Shawville hospital must impose parking fees on visitors and workers in order to be standard with city hospitals.

This blanket pay-for-parking scheme ordered by the board members of the CISSSO does not take into account that Shawville is a rural community, with free parking surrounding the hospital area and in town. This ridiculous decision to charge the Pontiac for parking will entail that patients, health care workers & visitors will now park offsite from the hospital to avoid paying these fees; essentially forcing the elderly, the injured, and nurses working 12-hour shifts to walk greater distances at their own risk to get to the hospital. Residential areas will be impacted as well.

I’ve benefited from the service provided by the health care workers at the Shawville hospital and forcing nurses and admin staff to now pay more than $2400 dollars (annually) to park onsite, when we’re surrounded by free parking, just seems petty. If forcing health-care workers to pay is petty, then forcing patients and visitors is an abject travesty. Shawville, unlike urban areas with health-care centers, does not have a public transportation option readily available to those who must visit or work at the hospital.

Make no mistake – this pay-for-parking scheme will not improve our local health care; it will only take more money from the pockets of health care workers and local residents.

Rural communities such as the Pontiac often are overlooked in favor of urban areas, or lumped in on decisions that are city-centric. All elected officials from all levels of Government, all political parties, local residents and Quebec health care worker unions need to work together to fix this.

This isn’t a partisan issue; it’s a common-sense issue. In my opinion, this is also an issue that is worth picking a fight over. Paid-parking at the Shawville hospital is a decision that should be suspended immediately pending public consultation, and rescinded prior to the March implementation date.

Further reading on this issue:

Gatineau imposes paid parking on Pontiac Community Hospital | Pontiac Journal


Mayors disappointed at CISSS de l’Outaouais restructuring in Shawville


Des tarifs décriés dans le Pontiac


A Facebook group was created that has attracted more than 1500 residents – https://www.facebook.com/groups/1699300137047057/  .

Photo above obtained here.

5 thoughts on “UPDATED w/interview: Shawville Hospital “Pay-to-Park” Scheme

  1. Anonymous

    I believe though I may be wrong but is it not $4.00 for the day for parking? Do you realize how much people from Shawville who have to commute to Ottawa everyday pay for parking? Yes if you look at the stats on the amount of people who have to travel to the city for jobs, as some of us are unable to get jobs in our very own town. Where do people believe the money is going? Maybe just maybe some of the expenses of the hospital such as winter plowing could be paid by the money generated by pay for parking scheme as everyone calls it. The hospital needs to generate money or eventually the hospital will no longer exist and then the residents will be forced to travel to Hull where parking is $16 for the day. Maybe we can focus on the way the hospital is now structured, managed, and come up with a more efficient ways. We have 6 to 8 hour wait times, 2 to 3 hour wait times for blood work, months to get to see your doctor and more for a specialist, but instead we are complaining about parking.


    1. Thanks for commenting. The parking rate amounts I obtained from the Dec 14th edition of The Equity, and rates for visitors were listed as being less than rates for employees.

      Since this was reported, a number of revised amounts have been floating around on Facebook but I’ve yet to see revised amounts documented in any publication. Maybe they do exist, but I’ve not seen them!

      In any case, I think the idea of charging for parking in Shawville at the hospital is a poor one. Very few people pay for parking when a free option exists nearby, and patients are going to be inconvenienced. The revenue generated (if any) by the parking lot is not going into the hospital to help with issues such as wait times either.


      1. Anonymous

        Perhaps we should receive better facts than ones posted on FACEBOOK. Money needs to be generated to keep any hospital in a means to keep their operations to the facility operational. If people are refusing to pay for parking and opting to park further away and walk then that’s their purgative. Maybe someone should look into the facts, (NOT FACEBOOK), or speak to the hospital to see where the money will be spent. Instead we go on tyrants of how our money is being spent on the big hospitals in Gatineau and Hull. No one in Shawville or surrounding areas has ever had to go to the larger hospitals for specific treatments? My comment was that people should be more concerned about the wait times, and the care they receive, not that the revenues generated should be used to help with these issues.


  2. Pingback: My First Date with CISSSO – The Right Profile

  3. From what I’ve gathered the funds from the parking scheme are to be used solely for the parking lot maintenance. The hospital is to receive a net reduction of its budget based on this amount. I have a number of qs in to CISSSO, we will see what they come back with on this and many other items.


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