May 30th, 2023

35 hours to go: Minden businesses bring their plea for their local ER to Queen’s Park

QUEEN’S PARK – With less than two days left until the Minden emergency room closes, the Official Opposition NDP joined small business owners to share their grave concerns about the impact this will have on Minden and surrounding communities.

“You have 35 hours to do the right thing,” said NDP Health critic France Gélinas (Nickel Belt), directly addressing the Ford Conservatives and the Minister of Health, who for weeks has failed to provide answers to questions about the Minden ER closure. “This is a very sad day for many people. There are laws in Ontario that govern how these decisions are made, and none of them were followed. How can that be? What is happening here is wrong. Give the people a chance to be heard, give the community a transition plan, and figure out a solution.”

NDP MPP Chris Glover (Spadina – Fort York) has been organizing alongside the local community in Minden for the past six weeks as they pushed back against this ER closure. He added, “This government is undermining the province’s competitive advantage with their privatization agenda. They are putting the livelihoods of local businesses at risk, and they are putting the health of local residents and tourists at risk. The government must reverse course on this decision.”

Haliburton Highlands Health Services announced that Minden Hospital will be closing their emergency room on June 1, giving the community just six weeks’ notice. Since then, residents in Minden and the surrounding areas have started a petition to call for a one-year moratorium on the decision, and brought their concerns to Queen’s Park numerous times.

Official Opposition NDP Leader Marit Stiles, who visited Minden last week, today tabled a petition in the Legislature with nearly 25,000 signatures calling for a moratorium on the ER closure.


Dennis Pennie, owner of Minden Auto Care

“We care for our community and this closure will hurt a lot of our clientele, who are above the age of 60. There is a good chance that I will lose up to 40 per cent of my business because of this ER closure. The community we serve needs healthcare close by. Haliburton hospital is already having a difficult time, and this closure will put a lot of pressure on that hospital and on our community.”

Mark Dracup, owner of The Rockcliffe Restaurant and Hotel

“This is not hyperbole, there is going to be blood on the hands of those making this decision. I have personally spoken to nurses who do not know where they will be working on Thursday. The fallout from this decision will be very bad. We are asking Mr. Ford, who we have supported, to please delay and reconsider this decision. Give time to the community to understand the impact and plan for the future. This is going to be devastating.”