City bans IH from using local roads to transport ultrasound machine; residents rally this afternoon

Kyra Hoggan
By Kyra Hoggan
October 20th, 2010

 Even former Governor General of Canada Adrienne Clarkson approves of a City of Castlegar move to prevent Interior Health from taking Castlegar’s ultrasound machine to Trail.

“I thought it was the most genuis, delightful bylaw I’ve ever heard of in Canada,” Clarkson said, in an interview Tuesday. Clarkson was in town interviewing locals for a book she’s working on (see related story in today’s Source).   The bylaw to which she’s referring is not, in fact, a bylaw, but rather a motion passed unanimously by city council Monday night, banning any vehicle transporting ultrasound equipment from Castlegar roads within a set radius of the Health Centre.   “If you want to take away our machine, try doing it without our roads,” said councillor Russ Hearne, who put the motion forward. “It’s not fighting fire with fire, it’s answering silliness with more silliness. We are well within our rights to do this.”
This, after Interior Health announced it would be taking the city’s one ultrasound machine and moving it to Trail, where it would complement the two such machines Trail already has.   Signs should be up today declaring the ban.   Council also voted unanimously, after a motion by Deb McIntosh, to close City Hall at 3:30 p.m. today, so city staff can, if they choose, participate in a rally to protest IH’s decision.   “We hope other employers will do the same, and let their employees attend,” Hearne said.   The rally will start in the Extra Foods parking lot at 3:30 p.m., with a march beginning at 4 p.m. along Columbia Avenue to the Health Centre. The rally is the brainchild of a townhall meeting last Thursday at the Complex, in which the level of community upset was made clear by more than 100 attendees, the majority of whom came to oppose the ultrasound machine’s removal.   Watch today’s Source for an updated story after the rally.

Categories: HealthPolitics