A new sign grading for local eateries goes into effect in 2016. In theory it’s a great idea giving consumers a clear window via a Green card, inferring safety, yellow, and red for closed. However in theory Communism is the best form of government which has never really worked out.
The issue is the potential for abuse for this system and the false sense of security it gives for establishments that might not warrant a green card. It could be used as a weapon or a control tool. We do after all live in a community where one restaurant was told that if they didn’t pull their ad with this newspaper they would not get a permit for an expansion, and another establishment that was told their free sponsorship had to end for them to get a permit as well, while other restaurants have been allegedly been given free passes for actions taken without permits. (Permit issues are a whole other issue in Cornwall).
The Eastern Ontario Health Unit administers this new signage. Their chief, Paul Roumeliotis is the highest paid government employee in the region leading the Sunshine list with a salary of over $300K alone.
Dr. Paul as he likes to be called, boycotts this newspaper in spite of it having the largest market share in its mandate to the point of not sending us health bulletins to warn the community when there are health issues. A reasonable person might suggest that in itself puts the community at risk.
Dr. Paul boycotted CFN after another gentleman with the same last name demanded a free ad, and was refused.
The board of the EOHU is made up chiefly of some of the same politicians that lead a conspiratorial boycott against this same newspaper as well.
The current system has rare inspections of eating establishments with clear direction of failings posted on the EOHU website. Consumers can type in the name or browse area eateries and see what is going on, how often a restaurant has been inspected, etc.
Having worked in the “Food biz” when I was younger I can tell you that it’s not a perfect system. There are many places that seem to be given free passes with yours truly visually witnessing some pretty gross conditions getting clean bills. Likewise, some locations owned by visible minorities seem to get tougher results. Again, this isn’t to infer in any many abuse by inspectors, however the lines can get fuzzy.
With the economy the way it is, especially for restaurants, can they afford to have an agency such as the EOHU start to card them at the whim of the agency or inspector? What are the protections, because once carded the impact in the day of social media can destroy a business.
The EOHU sadly is run by politicians which should not be the ideal. The purpose of the org is to administer on health issues. Yet when CFN has asked for assistance on stories involving suicide, cancer, and other issues we have not been given information which the public clearly is paying for, especially via Dr. Paul’s ginormous salary, and deserve those answers.
Is it time for a review of the EOHU and a house cleaning? Should politicians even be allowed to serve on a board like the EOHU without some connection or expertise related to the health industry?
What do you think dear CFN viewer? You can post your comment below.