By Mario deSantis, August 2, 1998

One month ago, June 29, The Star Phoenix of Saskatoon reported the article "CEO quits: Gabriel Spring boss resigns amid stories of poor office conduct". The article included allegations of unethical conduct by the CEO, Alex Horner. Alex Horner, in return, indicated that "health district CEOs are under more pressure than many other occupations. Only eight of the original 30 district CEOs around the province remain since the districts were created less than five years ago".

The above situation portraits the management turmoil which is taking place in the health care environment and which is rooted with two decades of mismanagement and political interference. In this respect, I want to tell you examples of social corruption I experienced from a segment of the provincial health care leadership. In 1990, I implemented at St Joseph's Hospital/Foyer d'Youville, Gravelbourg, an economical and effective accounting and payroll microcomputer system. Mr. Patrick Dumelie, then Director of Administrative Services with this facility, complimented my work, and later, realizing that I could not penetrate the health care market stated that I was being "blackballed" by the Saskatchewan Health Care Association (today's Saskatchewan Association of Health Organizations-SAHO). In Saskatchewan, blackballing appears to be a "free market" human relations practice followed by a segment of our political and business leadership [The Leader Post, Regina, "Former PC MLA fights to stay on welfare", by Murray Mandryk, February 24, 1998]

Another example of injustice and social corruption, occurred in 1997 when I pointed out that the Saskatchewan Association of Health Organizations allocated millions of dollars of taxpayer money into the failed Stargarden payroll project. At that time, I received a letter from the legal office of McKercher McKercher & Whitmore, Regina, stating that I had to "...immediately retract and apologize for these libellous statements... if we do not receive a copy of your letter of retraction and apology, in a form acceptable to SAHO within one week of the date of this letter,... we will seek instructions to commence court action... Govern yourself accordingly..." [letter dated May 7, 1997 from McKercher McKercher & Whitmore directed to Mario deSantis].

I can let you imagine the suffering I had to experience because of this letter, especially so because in an effort to provide a component of hope and optimism for my family I kept this information away from them. I tell you, that I never retracted any of my statements and these emperors with no clothes did not have the courage to stick with their intimidating tactics, tactics reminiscent of those ones used by the Nazis against the Jews!

I am quite confident, that when Justice Ron Barclay declared widespread anti-aboriginal racism to be a grim reality in this province, he was referring to this same segment of influential people [The Star Phoenix, "Racism no longer a matter of debate", by Randy Burton, July 21, 1998].

(If you would like to contact Mr. deSantis, I am sure he would like to hear from you. If you a comment that you would like to make about this or any article, Ensign would like to hear from you and your comments would appear in Letters.)