Today I pulled up to work and saw the big “thank you health care heros” sign on the front lawn of RIH. Today I was running behind schedule and it was snowing so I parked in the public parkade.
I went throughout my day. I donned and doughed my PPE all day. I missed a break because it was a busy day and we were short staffed. I did a good job and left work with knowing my patients were well taken care of.
Leaving work I was glad that I had parked in the parkade as it was pitch black and snowing hard. I was glad that I didn’t have to park 20 minutes away and walk alone in the dark to my vehicle.
After a long 12 hour shift I returned to my car to find the dreaded blue ticket on my windshield. The ticket that means you will have to pay a fine as well as have repercussions with HR. The blue ticket that makes me wonder how far the public’s gratitude for doing an already hard job under even greater distress and danger to nurses and all medical staff.
Now, I know that parking at RIH has always been a hot topic with the public and the staff alike. Never enough spots, always impossible to find a space. I know that many people in the public get angry when staff members park in the parkade, and we get that.
What I want to know is where we, the ones taking care of your loved ones, are meant to park? We get threatening letters from management along with a bus schedule and impark lots. The bus is out of the question, as nurses don’t have 9 to 5 jobs.
We work wonky, long hours. Doing my due diligence I called Impark and the employee actually laughed when I asked if there was room for a monthly pass somewhere close to the hospital. The lots I was given are an even further walk to work than it is to park at the first available all day street parking.
This “solution” is dangerous. We have had staff followed, and even mugged walking back to their vehicles after a shift in the dark. We have had our vehicles broken into. So, public, I ask you: Are you given a safe place to park in order to go to your job?
I write this letter, not to complain, as complaining is easy but does not solve the problem. I am writing this seeking solutions. What is the solution? Going on like this is not safe for the employees or fair to the public. So let’s hear your suggestions Kamloops! Our city is so good at coming to together when needed, so this is our SOS.
ANONYMOUS EMPLOYEE OF RIH