Wearing purple “Save Jackson” t-shirts, about 60 community members and Jackson healthcare workers packed County commission chambers on Tuesday, June 14th for a Public Safety & Healthcare Administration committee meeting to speak out against a report recommending privatizing Jackson and a resolution reducing oversight of the new JHS Financial Recovery Board.
Despite the overwhelming opposition from the crowd, the Commission discussed and ultimately passed a resolution requiring a 2/3 vote in order for Miami-Dade Commissioners to undo or change actions taken by the newly formed Financial Recovery Board. The resolution passed by a 3-2 vote, paving the way for Jackson’s new, small, unelected group of leaders to make critical decisions regarding our public hospital with less oversight of our elected officials. Commissioners Barbara Jordan and Javier Souto opposed. The measure is now headed to a full vote by the Miami Dade Board of County Commissioners. Click HERE to contact commissioners.
“Don’t give away authority you were elected to hold,” Local 1991 President Martha Baker, RN, told commissioners, “Especially when we have a brand new board.”
Commissioner Barbara Jordan agreed, adding that she “vehemently opposed” the motion. “I don’t want to hand over what I was elected to do to someone else. We are giving away our responsibilities to a group that is not tried and true.”
Commissioner Javier Souto said he doesn’t want to “pass power” to leaders that have been appointed, rather than elected, because Jackson is owned by the people of Miami-Dade County. “We cannot relinquish our power,” he said. “This is not meddling, this is doing our jobs. Anything that weakens the power of this board, I don’t think it’s right.”
The crowd showed its opposition to privatizing Jackson by standing and forming an “X: with their arms when Hospital Governance Task Force (HGT) Chairman Juan Zapata presented the final report of the task force, which is comprised of CEOs of most of Jackson’s competitors in the South Florida marketplace and President Martha Baker, RN. Baker attached a dissenting opinion to the HGT report which recommended, with no supporting evidence, that Jackson be converted to a private, non-profit entity.
Click here to see the report and dissenting opinion.
Commissioner Jose “Pepe” Diaz said that within a 60-day period he plans to hold a series of public hearings throughout Miami-Dade’s 13 districts to create a “sounding board” for the people to air their questions and concerns. He said commissioners should hold off on any action until the hearings have been completed.
It is crucial for our members and Jackson supporters to attend these hearings in full force so that we can OPPOSE any plans to privatize our public hospital. We will inform you of the dates, times and locations of the meetings as soon as this information becomes available.
Contact Your Commissioners Today! Tell them to SAVE JACKSON by keeping it public! Urge then not to allow profiteers and those seeking power to rip apart our community jewel for their own gain. Our patients deserve better! CLICK HERE TO CONTACT COMMISSIONERS!