• Justin O

Are Healthcare Workers Heroes or Victims?

I know I've shared videos questioning the true state of hospitals. It does appear that hospitals are not overrun. If anything they are underrun. Nurses and doctors are speaking out about this. Videos are surfacing exposing this. But whatever the reason, I think it's important to consider that our health care workers are not heroes of this crisis, they are victims.

Nurses and doctors are the vectors of this virus. They are the ones most at risk of contracting and spreading this thing. Evidence of this can be seen in the outbreaks of COVID-19 in hospitals old age homes. This is a global phenomenon. Mainstream media continues to paint health care workers with the hero brush. But considering what they are being subjected to, are they really heroes? Whether they are untrained, overworked, stressed out, it doesn't matter. These people are the ones being exploited. In the U.S., many of these workers are undertrained and underpaid. Here in Québec, our old age homes were severely understaffed and its workers severely underpaid. Take this as a lesson to the neo-liberals, AUSTERITY DOESN'T WORK. If I am being critical of healthcare workers doing Tik Toks in the ICU, I'm not critical of the workers themselves. I'm critical of the media coverage, I'm critical of the exploitative healthcare systems. These are people, not action heroes. They deserve to be treated with humanity.

We are amidst a great awakening. All of our problems are being thrown to the limelight. And as we continue through this crisis, it is my hope that we learn valuable lessons from all of this. In this situation, we need to be careful not to categorize health care workers as selfless heroes willing to put it all on the line for the greater good. They are valuable pegs in society. They are definitely needed. But they are not heroes. This sounds like a critique. but really it's a call for change. Let's fairly pay our health care workers, let’s equip them to handle situations like this. Let's treat them like we do each other. They don't deserve this. They deserve better.

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