– I wish Uran was less concerned with drawing a distorted picture of the Conservative Party’s politics and more concerned with discussing how we can improve care for the elderly in Oslo. I think that both the nursing home residents and its members deserve that, says Solberg to Dagsavisen on Thursday evening.
Deputy head of the Oslo Trade Union, Anna Elisabeth Uran, demands answers to which nursing homes the Conservative Party intends to privatize, after the Conservative Party’s city council leader candidate Eirik Lae Solberg this week presented a list of 16 immediate measures, which the party intends to implement if they emerge victorious in the autumn municipal elections.
Among other things, this involves putting three to four nursing homes out to competition.
In an interview with Dagsavisen, Uran reacts strongly to the plans, after all private commercial nursing homes in Oslo have been remunicipalized during the almost eight years under red-green government. Uran asks, among other things, whether Oslo Høyre believes that it is the case that employees in the nursing and care sector have too high a salary and refers to the salary growth they have had at public nursing homes.
– This is classic right-wing politics. Ordinary working people must pay the price for Oslo Høyre’s ideological recklessness, she says, among other things.
[ Krever svar fra Høyre: – Hvilke sykehjem skal privatiseres? ]
– Will make demands
Eirik Lae Solberg is more than happy to respond both to what he calls erroneous claims and attacks against the Conservative Party, and counters:
– Anna Elisabeth Uran acts as the extended arm of the Labor Party and comes exclusively with intimidation propaganda about the Conservative Party’s policies. She makes three claims and all of them are wrong, says Solberg, and points out what he thinks Uran misses:
– It is not right that those who work in a nursing home exposed to competition will see their pay go down. Oslo Høyre has made it clear that we will demand that those who work in a nursing home exposed to competition receive at least the same salary as before. It will be a competition to provide the best services to those in need of care, he explains.
Solberg is also happy to clear up a misunderstanding:
– Of course, it is also not right that nursing homes should be put out to competition in the first week. On the other hand, we will immediately begin the preparations for tendering three or four nursing homes. Such processes take time and it will probably take a year to carry out a tender. That process will also provide answers to which nursing homes should be put out to competition. Oslo has approximately 40 nursing homes. The fact that just under ten percent of these are eventually run by private individuals is really not a problem, but contributes to a positive diversity, believes Solberg.
[ «Slasken»: Mer sikkerhet, stort krigsskip og ny mistillit. Sånt blir det snodig stemning av ]
Football pub for the people
He has a lot on his mind after the criticism from the Trade Union.
– Thirdly, it is not right that the services are made worse by competition. On the contrary, diversity and competition are positive for quality, believes Solberg.
He first points out that the recently re-municipalized Oppsalhjemmet won international awards for its work with patient safety and risk management while it was run privately.
– Many of the municipal nursing homes visited Oppsalhjemmet to learn, he points out, and gives another example:
– At Manglerudhjemmet they established a football pub, spa and shop. After that, the well-being among the residents increased, argues Solberg.
The city council leader candidate points out that in the previous patient and user survey in Oslo, private and non-profits did slightly better than municipal ones.
– Many of the private sector are good at finding new creative solutions. It is best if municipal and private nursing homes can compete and at the same time learn from each other.
– But will the private nursing homes, with football pubs and spas, be for everyone?
– Yes, the private nursing homes will be for everyone. Applicants can choose freely between private and public nursing homes as long as there is room. The municipality must pay for the space regardless of whether it is public or private. If it turns out as Uran and Ap want, on the other hand, only those with the most money will have the opportunity to buy a place in a private nursing home, claims Solberg.
[ Byrådsleder Raymond Johansen (Ap) advarer: – Kriser er per definisjon uventede, plutselige og uønskede ]
Uran: – It just doesn’t end up in the media
Confronted with the answers from Solberg, Uran points out that there are good welfare services also in municipal nursing homes, and believes that this is not unique to the private ones.
– There is a lot of development and good services also in public nursing homes, but it just never ends up in the media. It is probably because the private sector is better, and has a greater need, to market it. But there are public nursing homes with both pubs, restaurants, spa departments and hairdressers, says Uran.
She rejects what the city council leader candidate says that the Conservative Party will demand that employees at nursing homes exposed to competition do not have to take a pay cut.
– He claims that our members will not lose wages as a result of being exposed to competition, and my answer is that then he has not followed the consequences of the nursing homes that have been exposed to competition. It doesn’t help what he is basing it on, because here there are market forces and completely different tariffs than the public sector has, reasons the deputy leader of the Oslo Trade Union, and finally responds to Solberg’s designation of her as the extended arm of the Labor Party.
– We are a trade union for our members and our members are our focus.
[ Bygger gigablokker mot byrådets og kommunens vilje ]
[ Kommentar: Storsatsingen på havvind ligner stadig mer på et luftslott ]